College Football
Could 5-star QB JuJu Lewis keep Deion Sanders in Colorado after Shedeur, Shilo leave?
College Football

Could 5-star QB JuJu Lewis keep Deion Sanders in Colorado after Shedeur, Shilo leave?

Updated May. 29, 2024 4:31 p.m. ET

Five-star quarterback recruit JuJu Lewis appeared poised to suit up for the USC Trojans as soon as 2026, but since reclassifying to 2025, his recruitment is essentially still open, with the Colorado Buffaloes looming as a suitor for his services. 

In fact, Colorado has "a real shot" at landing Lewis, according to a recent report from the Coloradoan. Lewis himself recently told On3 that "Colorado is the biggest name popping right now," while also posting a clip to X about his upcoming visit to the school.

Could flipping Lewis be a seismic move for Colorado not just for the post-Shedeur Sanders era at quarterback, but also in keeping the face of the program in place for the long haul?

On the latest edition of "The No. 1 College Football Show with RJ Young," host RJ Young opined that Lewis plays a pivotal role in head coach Deion Sanders' future in Boulder.


"We have folks that believe that Coach Prime has no reason to stay at Colorado once Shedeur Sanders and Shilo Sanders are gone to the NFL. I think there's some credence to that because Prime got into coaching to coach his boys," Young said about Deion Sanders. "He watched them play in Little League. He didn't like the way the coach was coaching them [and] thought he was going to get them hurt. He found himself getting up out of his chair more often than not to go to correct something or to help, and before you know it, he's coaching the teams. And he did that in high school at Trinity, and he did that at Jackson State, and now he's done it at Colorado. Everywhere that they have gone, he has gone, so if you think that he would follow them to the NFL, you got a point given what we've seen in the past. 

"I think that a JuJu Lewis could help put down all of that and be like ‘nah, nah, nah, he has a five-star quarterback coming in as an heir apparent to Shedeur, who has the goods to play right away.'"

As for Lewis' game, Young said that the quarterback "can put a ball wherever he wants to" but also that a lack of speed works against him.

In his sophomore season of high school, Lewis totaled 3,094 passing yards, 48 passing touchdowns, two interceptions and a 140.1 passer rating, while completing 66.4% of his passes. The season prior, Lewis threw for 4,118 yards and 48 touchdowns.

Sanders coached Shedeur and Shilo in high school before becoming the head coach of the Jackson State Tigers for the 2020 season, where he also coached his sons. Jackson State went 27-6 under Sanders from 2020-22 before he left for Colorado — and his sons with him. In Colorado's debut season with Sanders at the helm, they went just 4-8 (1-8 in Pac-12 play).

Both Shedeur and Shilo Sanders are entering their senior seasons.

Cormani McClain transfers to Florida & Colorado threatens USC to snatch 5-star QB JuJu Lewis

Shedeur Sanders is projected to be in the mix to be the first quarterback off the board in the 2025 NFL Draft. Last season, he totaled 3,230 passing yards, 27 passing touchdowns, three interceptions and a 151.7 passer rating, while completing 69.3% of his passes. Sanders also ran for four touchdowns.

Meanwhile, safety Shilo Sanders totaled one interception — which he ran back 80 yards for a pick-six — three passes defended, four forced fumbles and 70 combined tackles in 2023. 

The Buffaloes are entering their first season back in the Big 12 conference since the 2010 college football season; Colorado previously left the Big 12 for the Pac-12 ahead of the 2011 season.

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