BOULDER - Nothing has come easily to Colorado Buffaloes running back Kyle Evans. The former walk-on has had to work for everything he’s got but nothing has felt like more of a setback than when he dislocated his hip during a spring football scrimmage and his 2017 season started to look like a doubt.
“I learned that I’m able to persevere more than I thought I could before,” The 5-foot-7 Evans said. “Just because I’ve never dealt with an injury like that before. I’ve never felt that kind of pain so it was something that I had to deal with by myself and with everyone else just trying to get through it. Having people to help me out when I needed help was a big deal.”
It had seemed like Evans wouldn’t be able to get back on the field until midseason but, just like with a lot of things that Evans does, he surprised people and was able to make his season debut in week three against Northern Colorado.
He wasn’t able to contribute a lot this past Saturday although he did tally one catch for six yards in limited playing time. But it’s obvious that Evans brings a new dimension to the running game.
“I bring depth,” Evans explained. “We already have great running backs as it is, but just knowing you have more people that you can put in there when Phil [Lindsay] gets tired, when Mike [Adkins] gets tired or when Beau [Bisharat] gets tired we can keep pounding them and pounding them. What I’m good at is being agile in space. When I get into space, I can make that first guy miss which is big for a running back. And also catching the ball out of the backfield.”
The former walk-on has grown drastically since arriving in Boulder in 2014. But Evans had never been struck with the kind of adversity he had to go through over the summer. Because of that, Evans learned a lot about himself in just a few months.
“It really made me stronger in terms of how I think about stuff like what I can push through,” Evans said. “Even when I think about people dealing with the hurricanes and all of these natural disasters, I’m like what I’m going through is nothing compared to what they’re going through so I got to be able to push through.”
It’s easy to see the type of leader that Evans is starting to become. Especially with the time off that he had, he started to teach and mentor some of the younger guys and took every opportunity to try and compliment them.
“I gotta say Coach Mac does some great recruiting because Alex Fontenot, he’s going to be a great back,” Evans said. “Beau is a great back already and then Mike and Phil and obviously Donovan Lee.”
Whatever role that Evans finds himself in this season, will be one that he will take in full stride because of the attitude that he has. Whether it’s on special teams, in the running game or just by having a voice on the sideline, Evans will have a big impact on the 2017 Buffaloes.