The short video packages Colorado has released throughout spring ball have included countless Kabion Ento highlight grabs. And again on Friday morning, during the Buffaloes' second-to-last spring practice, Ento made a one-handed grab in the corner of the end zone.
“Coach 'Chev' (Darrin Chiaverini) told me after last season, 'It seems like some days you are not as focused as others,'” Ento recalled. “I took that to heart and came out here this spring making sure I am always focused. I work hard every rep. I have just stayed consistent.
“I have been able to make the plays they expect me to make. And of course making more plays and more plays, it builds your confidence, but you never want to get so confident that you get cocky. So I always stay level-headed.”
Given Ento's path to Colorado, it is easy to understand why he is able to stay level-headed. He only had offers from Division-2 programs and Junior Colleges coming out of high school. And after two seasons at East Central Community College in Mississippi, as a two-star recruit, Ento only had one power conference option in Colorado.
Ento played in all 13 games and had two touchdown grabs during his sophomore campaign with the Buffaloes. But his first year in Boulder was a learning experience.
“You have to know the offense, know all the concepts with this fast-pace we go at. And then on top of that, you have to beat the best cornerbacks in the nation,” Ento said. “Trying to balance that was definitely an adjustment last fall."
There is no denying after 14 spring practices that Ento fits in at the Pac-12. And as long as his preseason camp production is close to his spring ball production, it will be hard to keep him off the field in 2017.
“Kabion has made some big plays, kind of come into his own,” Colorado head coach Mike MacIntyre confirmed. “He is very athletic, great kid. He is doing real well.”
Off-the-field, Ento is pursuing a degree in Sociology and spending quality time on FaceTime with his young daughter, who lives back in his home-state of Arkansas. Ento's daughter and family did make it out to Boulder to watch three of his games last season.
Additional notes -
*** The format for the Buffaloes' spring game festivities, which will begin around 1 pm on Saturday, will resemble last year's spring game.
“We'll practice for half of it and scrimmage for half of it,” MacIntyre said. “We are going to go defense on one side, offense on the other and do a situation type scrimmage. We've lost two running backs this spring, I'm not going to lose another. So we'll get after it but it'll mainly be a thud situation.”
The forecast in Boulder on Saturday calls for temperatures in the high 70s with very little wind.
*** Aaron Haigler said he continues to add good weight to his 6-foot-7 frame and aspires to get up to 290-pounds by August. Haigler is expected to man the starting right tackle role full-time in 2017 after platooning with Sam Kronshage last season.
“He has gotten bigger, strong and more comfortable out there,” MacIntyre said of Haigler. “He is ahead of where he was at the end of last spring, which is what you want to see. I have been pleased with Aaron's progress and hopefully he can put on 5-6 more pounds of good strength. I think he'll have a really good year.”
*** Colorado State and Oregon State agreed to move this season's game in Fort Collins to Aug. 26, prior to the Rocky Mountain Showdown. That means Mike Bobo's squad will have a game under their collective belt, while the Buffaloes will be opening their season against the Rams.
“I don't really think it matters unless they've changed something dramatically offensively or defensively,” MacIntyre said. “If they go from a 'Pro-I' team to a spread team, or go from a 3-4 defense to a 4-3 defense, that would help you because we'll have a game of film on them. But they probably won't [make any drastic changes].”