Major News For Colorado Buffalo Football

The Colorado football program received great news late this week when 5-star linebacker Jon Major told CU coaches he wanted to be a Buffalo next year. It marks the second consecutive recruiting cycle that CU has landed the state's top high school prospect.

The Colorado Buffaloes are in Lubbock, Texas, today playing the Texas Tech Red Raiders. The CU coaching staff took the trip south with the news that their No. 1 instate target, inside linebacker Jon Major from Ponderosa High, will sign with the Buffs in February.

The news, a major recruiting coup for CU, means for the second straight season the university has become the future home for the state's most sought after prospect. Last season, it was offensive tackle Ryan Miller — also a 5-star prospect by — who decided to stay home and play for the Buffs.

Major is ranked as the No. 1 strongside linebacker prospect in the country by He had literally dozens of offers, and narrowed his choice down earlier this fall to CU, Oklahoma and Wisconsin. (He took official visits to all three schools).

At Colorado, Major will be mentored by one of the most respected college linebackers coaches in the country in Brian Cabral. Cabral played inside linebacker at Colorado in the mid-1970s, then played several years for the Chicago Bears. He backed up Mike Singletary and was special teams captain on the Bears' 1985 Super Bowl Champions team.

At CU, Cabral coached Butkus Award winner Matt Russell, and other standouts who went on to enjoy long NFL careers such as Greg Biekert, Chad Brown, Hannibal Navies and Ted Johnson.

Major knows what he's in store for in working under Cabral.

"Cabral is one of the best linebacker coaches in the country," Major told BSN in an interview earlier this year. "That's very important because that's the guy you're going to see six days a week. He's going to help you take you to where you want to be."

In fact, Major — who took his official recruiting trip to CU during the win over Oklahoma on Sept. 29, and made several unofficial visits to the school, as well — has always been impressed with the Buffs coaching staff.

"I think they're on the rise and they have a good plan," Major said. "They've got everything to get to where they want to be."

Why do college coaches and prospect analysts think the kid from Ponderosa High is a major talent? It's his combination of size and speed. He is listed at 6-foot-4 and 225 pounds, and has been clocked below 4.6 in the 40-yard dash.

Major has been told his sideline-to-sideline motor is what especially earned him great interest this recruiting season when he garnered over 50 scholarship offers.

"I'd say that's more important actually," he said. "That's the name of the game — speed kills."

But Major has long been a big hitter, as well.

"The officials in little league used to make up penalties," Jon's father, Ken, told BSN. "They used to flag him for hitting too hard. I didn't know that was a penalty."

Ken Major — who is an assistant coach at Ponderosa — was an All-American as a tight end at three different levels: high school, junior college a Division I (Rice). An injury to the elder Major late in his college career derailed a possible NFL career.

"My father was successful as a football player," Jon said. "It's kind of been bestowed on me since I was young."

Major's older brother, Justin, is a freshman at Colorado this year. Jon said among his hobbies are hunting and fishing in the outdoors of Colorado.

"You like to stick to your hobbies," he added, something he'll be able to do if he can find the time after he embarks on what's sure to be a busy college career.

How soon will Major make an impact at Colorado? That's to be determined. But Miller, who played in a run-oriented game at Columbine High School, worked his way into the starting lineup at Colorado three games back. That's rare for a college offensive lineman to start as a true freshman.

Major will certainly have the opportunity to compete for playing time in 2008. Jordon Dizon, the nation's leading tackler, is a senior. Dizon started his first game as a true freshman out of Hawaii and never looked back.

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