Colorado receiver Jay MacIntyre will have foot surgery on Friday, but is expected to be ready for fall camp.
CU head coach Mike MacIntyre said his son, a senior slot receiver, has not fully recovered from the foot injury he sustained last season.
Jay had a Lisfranc injury that caused him to miss the Buffs' Pac-12 opener against Washington on Sept. 23 last year, but that injury wound up leading to a Jones fracture, which is a fracture of the fifth metatarsal bone on the outside of the foot.
"He basically played with a broken foot all year and just fought through it," coach MacIntyre said. "We didn't realize it was as bad as it was, so they've been shutting him down."
CU held its ninth of 15 practices of the spring on Monday, and Jay has not participated. After his surgery on Friday, he faces six to eight weeks of recovery, but coach MacIntyre said at that point Jay will be "full speed, ready to go."
Jay is CU's active career leader in catches (66) and receiving yards (870). He had 28 catches for 396 yards and two touchdowns last year, starting five games in the slot.
"He's our most reliable returning receiver with the most catches on our team, so we need him and we're excited about him getting well," coach MacIntyre said. "It's been frustrating, but he's played through it unbelievably."
Evans competing for starting role
A year ago at this time, running back Kyle Evans was recovering from hip surgery, uncertain of his future. Now, he's in a wide open competition at running back as the Buffs look to replace Phillip Lindsay, who has graduated after back-to-back 1,000-yard seasons.
Evans, a senior, is competing with fellow senior Donovan Lee, junior Beau Bisharat and redshirt freshman Alex Fontenot.
"It's going well," Evans said of his spring. "I'm a very hard critic of myself, so there's a lot of things every day I think I can work on. I try to keep the other running backs to that standard, too, because the harder we are on ourselves, the better we'll be and the more we'll want to work to be great."
A former walk-on, the 5-foot-7, 175-pound Evans, has rushed for 400 yards in his career, but had just two yards on two carries last season as the Buffs leaned heavily on Lindsay.
While Virginia Tech transfer Travon McMillian could take over the starting role when he arrives in the summer, Evans said he and his fellow backs are making the most of their opportunity this spring.
"We still help each other out because we're a position group and we're still competing within our group to be the best we can be," Evans said. "With the addition of Travon, it only makes us better, but it really just makes us compete even harder to be better players in fall camp."
Running backs coach Darian Hagan said Evans has had a good spring, and the Buffs are looking to him to be a leader.
While Hagan prefers to have a featured back, he said Monday that he has no problem rotating players if they can all be productive.
"You have to have guys fresh, but the thing I tell guys is this: 'If I don't trust you, I ain't going to play you. We have to be able to trust you; the team has to be able to trust you,'" Hagan said.
Several newcomers have turned some heads this spring for the Buffs, including defensive lineman Mustafa Johnson. A transfer from Modesto (Calif.) Junior College, the 6-foot-2, 285-pounder has been mentioned by several teammates and coaches as standing out.
Senior safety Nick Fisher described a play from Saturday in which Johnson, from a three-point stance, dove and nearly picked off a ball at the line of scrimmage.
"He's been making crazy plays like that, getting in the backfield," Fisher said. "I call him the ankle taker, because you think someone is getting away and here comes a little flash. How big he is, he moves really well. I think he's leading the team right now in tackles for loss because he just gets in the backfield. He has a nose for the ball."
Johnson is competing for a starting role in his first season with the Buffs.
Coach MacIntyre said the Buffs worked on red zone and third down situations at practice on Monday. "We did a good job with that," he said. ... The Buffs have four practices this week, including Saturday's "Spring Showcase" at Folsom Field. That will run from 1-3 p.m., with one hour of position of drills before a scrimmage. ... For those who can't attend the spring showcase, it will be broadcast on the Pac-12 Network.