While Deion Sanders’s first season at Colorado brought significant hype and represented a big step forward on the field, the team had major structural issues that became apparent during the slide from 3–0 to 4–8. Defensively, the Buffaloes were a sieve, finishing in the bottom 10 in scoring and total defense.
Sanders, an NFL legend from his time playing for the Atlanta Falcons, San Francisco 49ers and Dallas Cowboys, may not have a ton of interest in coaching NFL football, but he’s looking to the pro ranks to fill a major spot on his coaching staff: defensive coordinator. According to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport, Cincinnati Bengals defensive backs coach Robert Livingston was set to speak to Sanders about the job on Wednesday and is expected to fill the role.
Livingston has been a mainstay on the Bengals’ staff, joining the franchise as a scout in 2012 and moving to assistant coach in 2015. Before entering the NFL, he served as an assistant at Vanderbilt and Furman. Livingston was a safety at William & Mary in the late 2000s.
If Livingston takes the job, he’ll oversee a talented group of defensive backs including two-way standout Travis Hunter and Shilo Sanders, Deion’s son.
Colorado is hiring to replace college football veteran Charles Kelly, who served as defensive coordinator in ’23 before moving on to take a co-defensive coordinator role at Auburn.
Sanders has made significant changes to his coaching staff since the end of the ’23 season. After demoting offensive coordinator Sean Lewis (who would leave to take over as head coach at San Diego State), Pat Shurmur steps in as the new full-time offensive coordinator. Former NFL offensive lineman Phil Loadholt takes over perhaps the most important position coach role and will lead a Colorado offensive line that struggled mightily a year ago. He previously served as an analyst at Oklahoma, Ole Miss and UCF.