Bryce Bobo has talked his way into being the subject of an intriguing preseason experiment.
Earlier this summer, the University of Colorado's junior approached head coach Mike MacIntyre about the possibility of playing safety in addition to his regular duties at wide receiver.
Of course, it wasn't the first time MacIntyre had heard a request to play on the opposite side of the ball, but usually such requests are met with a roll of the eyes — such as the interior lineman who always begs to get his hands on the ball.
However, MacIntyre had seen Bobo dominate in the defensive backfield during his days at Charter Oak High School in California. Despite having returning starters at both safety spots in Ryan Moeller and Tedric Thompson, MacIntyre believes getting Bobo up to speed at safety could help bolster his team's depth.
Since Bobo already has his job requirements mastered on offense, Bobo spent Friday's workout on defense and MacIntyre said he likely will rotate from offense to defense on a daily basis for the time being.
"It's all an experiment right now," MacIntyre said. "Everyone knows the injuries we had last year, and if something like that were to happen again Bryce could help us with depth. He's also a physical guy. We play him on special teams some, so you have to tackle and do some of those things. He has some of those instincts."
Bobo caught 24 passes for 207 yards last season and currently is listed at the top of the Buffs' depth chart at the X-receiver spot.
Last year, the Buffs' special teams were anything but special. A glut of blocked kicks and the struggles of placekicker Diego Gonzales—he finished 18-for-29 on field goals—were just two of the factors that led to the departure of former special teams coach Toby Neinas.
Instead of hiring a special teams replacement for Neinas, MacIntyre opted to divide the special teams duties amongst the entire coaching staff. It will be a work in progress throughout the preseason.
"Full-time special teams coaches really just came into existence in college football probably about 10 years ago," MacIntyre said. "There's still quite a few teams that run their special teams by position coaches.
"What we've done is we've broken it down within our team. We have coaches that have been special teams coaches before on staffs. We have coaches that have coached different special teams in their career a tremendous amount. What it's done to me is that it's put more emphasis on each member of the staff. Now the staff is totally involved in it."
MacIntyre began his media day session Friday by expressing his condolences for two people close to the CU program who recently passed away, Charlie Whitaker and Tom Kensler.
Whitaker, a longtime Buffs fan who often worked as a volunteer at CU football practices, died recently of pancreatic cancer. Kensler was a longtime college sports reporter for the Denver Post who covered the Buffs when MacIntyre took over.
"I just wanted to make sure I said our condolences to the families and tell how much I appreciated them," MacIntyre said.