In the midst of a talented Buffaloes backfield, Colorado sophomore Patrick Carr has what it takes to rise above the herd.
After posting mixed results as a true freshman last season, Carr has impressed his coaches thus far in the spring, especially running backs coach Darian Hagan.
"He's the guy with his speed and how physical he is, he'll change the game for us," Hagan said.
Last season, the running back contributed some on offense with 272 rushing yards in 11 games. In his biggest game, at UCLA, Carr had 100 yards and one touchdown on 19 carries.
During Saturday's spring game, Carr finished with 10 rushing attempts for 31 yards and two first downs.
Mentally, Carr said the game has not changed much for him in the way he approaches each snap, but he's focused more on what he can physically do each time he gets the ball.
"It's just being able to read in the hole better and then being an explosive player, and it's been working out this whole spring. I'm still getting consistent and getting better at that, and I just keep on striving to get better every day," Carr said.
In spring practice this year, he's improved leaps and bounds in how he approaches the game both on and off the field, according to Hagan.
"I just think that's he's more mature, he knows what's going on, and I think he's more decisive with his running style," Hagan said. "I think as a freshman, what you tend to do is you get on the field early and you play a lot because you're a freshman and you got talent and all of that, but you don't really, fully know what you're actually doing. Your talent takes over.
"But now, I think he understands what he's doing. He's running harder, he's playing faster, and the game has slowed down for him."
A multisport athlete in football and track and field (sprints), Carr has been able to improve both his speed on the track and his strength in the weight room.
Because of that, Hagan has high hopes for what Carr can bring to the offense next season.
"I think it will impact (the game) a lot because he's playing faster, and when you got a guy that, with the speed he has and playing fast with confidence like he is, the sky's the limit," Hagan said.
Alissa Noe: firstname.lastname@example.org