Early in Nick Fisher's career, it was talented veterans standing in his way of a starting role with the Colorado football team.

Last year, a hamstring injury got in his way.

Now a senior, Fisher is hoping this will finally be the year he steps in as a starter for the Buffaloes defense.

The 6-foot, 190-pound Fisher is one of the favorites, along with fellow senior Evan Worthington, to start at safety for the Buffs next season.

"You never know what's going to happen, just like last year," Fisher said. "If everything stays well, I think it would be great to compete for a starting job."

So far this spring, things are going well for Fisher, who made his first career starts at safety in the Buffs' final two games last season (he had one other start, at nickel, in 2015).

"Now he's getting his chance to shine and be the guy and he's doing a good job of that," CU safeties coach ShaDon Brown said earlier this spring. "He's a coach on the field for us in the back end. I'm pleased with his development and I'm pleased with his focus and attention to detail in everything that he's doing right now, as well as helping others."

Fisher, from Temecula, Calif., was talented enough to play as a true freshman in 2015, and has flashed his big-play potential at times.

In 2016, he came off the bench in a game against No. 20 Washington State and was so good in that win that he earned Pac-12 defensive player of the week honors. Last year, he had his first career interception on Oct. 28 against California and took it 100 yards for a touchdown.


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Fisher played a career-high 315 snaps last season, recording 28 tackles and six pass breakups, but his season got off to a late start.

After beginning August camp in competition for a starting role, Fisher was sidelined with a hamstring injury. He was out about a month and missed the first two games of the season.

Since then, Fisher has changed his workout regimen in an effort to stay healthy.

"I started stretching a lot more," Fisher said. "After the hamstring happened my first time, I took it upon myself to start stretching. I do that after every practice with the trainers. I feel a lot better."

Fisher has also spent more time in the film room and said he's taking conditioning seriously this offseason.

"When our offense goes fast out here, it's killer; it's hard to keep up," he said. "I believe if we can keep up with them, we can keep up with anybody. I'm glad our offense goes fast tempo like that so we can get that practice in."

Fisher is also hoping to sharpen up his eyes when on the field and believes better conditioning is going to help him stay fundamentally sound late in games.

Perhaps just as important, Fisher is taking on more of a leadership role.

"Nick's done really well (this spring)," head coach Mike MacIntyre said. "He was really vocal out there (Saturday) in the scrimmage and making checks and making plays. Nick's doing what I think he should be doing."

Fisher is hoping what he's doing now translates into his best season, but also into a great season for the safeties as a unit and the defense as a whole.

Outside of Fisher and Worthington, the Buffs lack experience at safety, but seniors Jaisen Sanchez and Kyle Trego and redshirt freshman Isaiah Lewis are getting valuable reps this spring.

Sophomore Aaron Maddox, a junior college transfer sitting out this spring with a shoulder injury, and true freshmen Hasaan Hypolite and Ray Robinson are expected to join the mix in the fall.

"(This spring is about) getting the bond there, getting the guys bought in and making sure we're cool as a unit," Fisher said.

"It's going great."

Contact staff writer Brian Howell at howellb@dailycamera.com or twitter.com/BrianHowell33