During his career at Colorado, running back Michael Adkins II has spent more time on the sidelines than he imagined.
The junior is hoping his latest setback isn’t a big deal, however.
Adkins tweaked his hamstring on Saturday and was out until Thursday, when he returned on a limited basis.
“Just a little mix up, but I’m getting that back and ready to go,” he said. “Definitely easing back into it and we’ll keep on making progress and make sure I’m 100 percent for the games.”
Adkins injured his hamstring on his first carry of the Buffs’ third game last year, Sept. 19 against Colorado State, and did not play again the rest of the season.
“It’s definitely not as bad (as last year), so we’ll get through it and get ready for the season,” he said. “I think last year helped me out a little bit how to get through that, so I kind of know what to do.”
When healthy, Adkins is arguably CU’s best running back. He has 1,145 yards and 12 touchdowns in his career, while averaging 5.1 yards per carry. He had 209 yards and three touchdowns through two games last season.
Adkins, however, has yet to play a full season. He’s been on the field for just 22 of a possible 37 games during his career and was limited or played sparingly is several of those games.
He missed the final two games of the 2014 season with a knee injury and was limited in other games that season. He missed a game with a concussion in 2013.
“It’s definitely important to stay healthy and do that,” he said. “I haven’t played a (full) season, so I want to get back out there and make sure I’m ready for the season and take strides to get there and make sure I can withstand the season this year.
“I got a little bit stronger in the offseason, so I’m definitely where I want to be in terms of weight and strength. So, it’s just a matter of putting everything together and going from there.”
Settling in at WR
Jaleel Awini has spent a lot of his career trying to learn a new position. This fall is no different, but the senior is excited about his transition to receiver.
“It’s been good so far,” he said.
A year ago at this time, Awini was transitioning from quarterback to outside linebacker. While he was a solid defender, he never fully enjoyed playing on that side of the ball. By late in the season, he was an emergency quarterback and got a chance to play on offense in the finale at Utah.
Although it’s in a new position, Awini is thrilled to be on offense.
“I’m very excited,” he said. “I love having the rock in my hands, I love making plays.”
Awini said he played receiver as a freshman at Rangeview High School and then again as a freshman at Air Force in 2012.
“I’m pretty comfortable catching the ball,” he said. “The biggest thing I need to work on is you have to be a lot more technical at this level. My routes aren’t the sharpest right now, so I really need to work on my routes, but I think I have the speed and the hands to really produce and make an impact on the team.”
Junior Bryce Bobo is no longer alternating between receiver and safety, as he did early in camp. He is now working exclusively at receiver, where he’s caught 47 passes over the past two seasons. … Freshman Tony Julmisse is still splitting his time between receiver and defensive back. … Head coach Mike MacIntyre said the Buffs continue to play offensive linemen in different spots to increase the group’s versatility. Overall he said camp has “gone real well” for the linemen. … The Buffs held their first two-a-day practices on Wednesday and responded well with a spirited practice Thursday. “That showed not only their physical conditioning, but their mental conditioning in being an older team,” MacIntyre said.
Brian Howell: firstname.lastname@example.org, on Twitter: @BrianHowell33.