Shane Callahan made his first appearance on the football field for the Colorado Buffaloes on Saturday.

It's still unclear, however, what kind of role the big lineman will play for the Buffs this season.

Callahan is a sophomore transfer from Auburn. The 6-foot-6, 300-pounder from Chaparral High School recently enrolled at CU and is currently ineligible to play because of the NCAA's transfer rule. CU has filed an appeal, however, and hopes Callahan can play this year.

"We're going to practice him as he learns everything, just practice him like he's getting ready to play," CU head coach Mike MacIntyre said. "Right now, he's having to learn everything, so he's a little bit behind, but hopefully they'll clear him and he'll be ready to play. We'll look forward for the next two or three weeks, until we find out, like he's getting ready to play."

If he is allowed to play immediately, Callahan figures to compete for a starting job on the offensive line. At the very least, he is expected to give the Buffs some good depth up front.

"It's going to help a lot," MacIntyre said. "When we see him in pads, we'll know more, but he's a good-looking young man and moved around well today."

Buffs open camp

Saturday marked the first practice of fall camp, and MacIntyre said the three-hour session was a good start. It was better than Day 1 a year ago, he said, because the players are much more familiar with the system.


"We are more efficient," MacIntyre said. "We're way ahead of where we were last year at this time and able to get into the offense, into the defense and special teams. It's not necessarily you put in a ton more offense and defense. It's that you're able to be fundamentally sound."

Players, in general, were excited about being back on the field together.

"Everybody was really positive, giving a lot of energy and having fun with it, not being all timid and nervous like we were last year," linebacker Addison Gillam said.

Colorado offensive lineman Shane Callahan grabs some water on Saturday during practice. Callahan is waiting to hear from the NCAA if he is able to play
Colorado offensive lineman Shane Callahan grabs some water on Saturday during practice. Callahan is waiting to hear from the NCAA if he is able to play this season. More photos and video: (Cliff Grassmick / Daily Camera)

New NCAA rules allowed coaches to spend eight hours per week with the players over the summer, with up to two of those hours being used for film study. Previously, coaches couldn't spend any time with the players over the summer.

"It does help," MacIntyre said. "In our meetings is where it really, really helped. We started installing the first, second, third, fourth day a month ago, so today we kind of reviewed it.

"It does bring the freshmen more up to speed. But, they're still a little bit lost when they first get out here. I thought they were able to line up better, do things better, execute more stuff on that field."

Returning to the field

Redshirt freshman defensive end Timothy Coleman was elated to be on the field Saturday. The 6-foot-2, 250-pounder from Mullen went through his first full practice in nearly two years.

Coleman suffered a devastating knee injury (ACL and MCL tears) in the second game of his senior year at Mullen in 2012. Then, on Sept. 18 of last year, he ruptured an Achilles' tendon.

"It felt great," Coleman said of his first practice as a Buff. "It was really good to get back on the field. The biggest thing is getting prepared. My body is not used to doing what it used to do anymore, so I have to use this fall camp to get back, get right."

Depth at end

The Buffs could use a healthy Coleman, because they've got unproven talent at defensive end. They lost standout Chidera Uzo-Diribe to graduation, junior Samson Kafovalu will be ineligible to play this year, and junior college transfer Leo Jackson, who had hoped to play this year, won't enroll until January.

Nevertheless, defensive ends coach Andy LaRussa said he likes the group the Buffs have this season.

"I see a lot of athletic ability, I see a lot of potential," he said. "I'm excited about the prospect of us being really good. We're a little bit young, but I think there's a lot of athleticism there and if we can grow them up fast we've got a chance to be really good."

In addition to Coleman, the Buffs will look to players such as junior Tyler Henington, sophomore Jimmie Gilbert and redshirt freshmen Derek McCartney and Markeis Reed to compete for starting jobs.


Henington left Saturday's practice early after rolling his ankle. ... Tackle Jeromy Irwin, who missed the last part of spring practice with a fractured bone in his foot, was on the field Saturday. MacIntyre said Irwin "moved around well." ... After some speculation that he would be listed as an athlete, Jaleel Awini, who transferred from Air Force, is playing quarterback. Awini has to sit out the season because of the transfer rule.

Contact Writer Brian Howell at or on Twitter: @BrianHowell33.