Embree has to quickly develop his tight end room

Chase Howell

The Colorado Buffaloes are only returning one tight end that played any significant snaps last season for CU.

His name is Brady Russell and he’s a big reason why the tight ends room is shaping into a really good one in 2020.

After walking on at Colorado, Russell earned himself a scholarship after one season with the Buffaloes.

As a redshirt freshman he played in every game and started three.

As a sophomore, he started in every game, caught 28 balls for 262 yards and a touchdown. Now he’s one of the more reliable pass-catchers on the team but his blocking is where he separates himself from other tight ends in the past.

"I will say this right now, Brady Russell is one of those guys that you want in your room and you need in your room," Tight ends coach Embree said during a conference call. "He is a true competitor. He is a true leader and I think he'll really come out of his shell this year as a leader for the team. I am happy with what I got.”

The only other tight end with experience playing for the Buffaloes is Luke Stillwell. A junior college transfer who played in two games last season during a redshirt year.

“I think there is a bright future in Luke Stillwell,” Embree said. “I think he can be elite in the pass game, and he is hungry to learn the run game."

They also have a few transfers joining the mix in Matt Lynch, Nick Fisher and Jake Peters.

“With some of the guys that came in and some of the people that are already here, we're all very different in our abilities and our skill sets,” Russell said. “So it's exciting seeing what we might be able to do, putting one or multiple of us on the field at a time.”

Two of them come from Pac-12 foes UCLA and Arizona while Fisher had a successful career at the division two level.

Lynch and Fisher are graduate transfers and will be immediately eligible while Peters will likely have to sit out a season pending a waiver.

“I'm excited with a lot of the new guys we've got and excited about, with the personnel we have, what we can do and what we're going to be able to do,” Russell said.

Not only does Embree like the way his group is shaping up, the tight ends have also seemed to take a liking to Embree and his coaching style.

“I love Coach Embree,” Russell said. “We're getting along pretty well already. It's cool having a coach that comes from the background that he's had already. He's so young still, we can relate to him real well, we can communicate really well with him. But he's just a good dude too.”

Embree has already shown some success on the recruiting trail, and if he can develop like he says he can, the tight ends room at Colorado is something to get excited about.