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#15 Jason Espinoza
Position: Wide Receiver
Height: 5'8"
Weight: 175
Year: Junior
City/State: Alamosa, Colo.
High School: Alamosa
Experience: 2 Letters
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AT COLORADO: Career Note—As a sophomore (2009) when he was a receiver, he caught eight passes for 109 yards and a touchdown at Toledo; as a senior (2011) after moving to cornerback, he had two interceptions, thus becoming just the third player in Colorado history to have a 100-yard receiving game and make at least one interception in their Buff career, with nearly half a century passing in-between.  The only other two to do it were Leon Mavity (two receptions for 112 yards/1TD vs. Utah in 1961) and Ken Blair (2-105/2TD vs. Kansas, also in 1961); Blair had an interception in 1962 and Mavity picked off three career balls, one in 1962 and two in 1963. 

2011 (Sr.)—He played in 10 games, six on defense including two starts (versus Washington State at left corner and at Washington as the nickel back).  He moved to cornerback from wide receiver the Monday before the season opener against Hawai'i, and would play 219 snaps from scrimmage on the season, finishing with 23 tackles (18 solo, one for a loss), along with four third down stops and a team-best two interceptions.  In his two starts, he had five tackles (four solo), and played every snap (76) against WSU; he had a career high six against Arizona (five solo, with two third down stops) and also posted five (three solo) against Southern California.  His two picks came in as many weeks, and against two of the top quarterbacks in the nation, USC’s Matt Barkley and Arizona’s Nick Foles.  He also earned four special team points (one each: assisted tackle, knockdown block, forced fair catch and caused penalty).  He missed the second half of spring drills after suffering a deep hip contusion in practice.  He caught two passes for 20 yards in the one major spring scrimmage he was able to participate in.

2010 (Jr.)—He played in all 12 games, including two starts (Hawai’i, Oklahoma), catching one pass for 13 yards and a first down against Texas Tech.  He finished the spring second on the depth chart (“H” receiver spot), having caught 12 passes for 103 yards and a touchdown in the three main spring scrimmages.  After working hard for two years, the coaches placed him on scholarship beginning in the spring semester.  He had the top bench press (322 lbs.) of all the wide receivers in spring conditioning tests, and his 3.90 time in the pro agility drill was the best figure on the entire team.

2009 (Soph.)—He played in 11 games, including starts in the first three (CSU, Toledo, Wyoming), missing the Texas A&M game due to an injury.  He caught 13 passes for 136 yards and a touchdown on the season; six earned first downs, five of the grabs were for 10 or more yards, and his long catch covered 27 yards.  His top game was at Toledo, where he caught eight passes for 109 yards and a touchdown; it was the 100th 100-yard receiving game in CU history.   He caught three passes for 18 yards versus Wyoming and two for nine yards against Colorado State.  He was also CU’s main punt return man, with 22 for 68 yards (3.1 average); the aim of the punt team, however, wasn’t so much on the return but to field all the kicks and prevent worse field position: he would often catch a ball and get hit practically at the same time.  One of the recipients of the team’s Gold Group Commitment Award as selected by the coaches, as the honor recognizes excellence with class in a variety of areas.  He was the Iron Buffalo Award winner for the receivers in the spring, presented to the player at each position who represents hard work, dedication, toughness and total poundage lifted in the weight room.  He had a fantastic spring on the field, leading all receivers in the three main scrimmages with 14 catches for 256 yards (18.3 per) and four touchdowns.   

2008 (Fr.-RS)—He missed the first five games of the year with a broken collarbone, returned to play in two games (against Kansas and Texas A&M), and then missed the last three after suffering the same injury.  In his brief time back, he returned two punts, one for four yards and the other for a 5-yard loss when he muffed the catch.  He switched to wide receiver from safety for spring drills, and had an excellent spring at his new position as well as emerging as a candidate to return kicks.  He caught six passes for 110 yards and a touchdown in the three main scrimmages, also returning nine punts for 91 yards with a long runback of 45 yards.

2007 (Fr.)—Redshirted; practiced both as a safety and a wide receiver over the course of the fall after joining the team as an invited walk-on for August drills.  Though a defensive back on the roster, he was primarily used in practices on the scout team at receiver, and did so well that the coaches named him the recipient of the Offensive Scout Award.  The coaches also selected him as the scout team special teams player of the week for the Colorado State game.

HIGH SCHOOL—He was named first-team All-State, All-South Central Conference and All-San Juan Valley his senior season as a wide receiver, when he had 67 catches for 1,507 yards and 20 touchdowns, the latter two setting state records for all classifications.  He also earned first-team All-State and All-Conference honors at cornerback.  As a junior, he was named second-team All-State at receiver and first-team All-State, All-Conference and All-Valley at cornerback.  Under longtime Mean Moose head coach Manny Wasinger, Alamosa was 14-0 his senior year en route to winning the 3A State Championship.  He also lettered twice in basketball, as he was named second-team All-State his junior and senior seasons and was the South Central League most valuable player during his junior campaign. 

ACADEMICS—He earned a degree in Communication in December 2011.

PERSONAL—Born March 12, 1988 in La Jara, Colo.  Hobbies include playing basketball.  He is a licensed financial advisor, as he took classes outside of CU on weekends to get certified.

Receiving High Games
Season G No. Yds. Avg. TD Long Rec Yds
2008 2 0 0 0.0 0 0 0 0
2009 11 13 136 10.5 1 27 8 109
2010 12 1 13 13.0 0 13 1 13
Totals 25 14 149 10.6 1 27 8 109

 

Defense Tackles  
Season G Plays UT AT Total TFL Sacks 3DS Hurr FR FF PBU INT
2011 6 219 18 5 23 1-5 0- 0 4 1 0 0 0 2

ADDITIONAL STATISTICS—Punt Returns: 2-minus 1, -0.5 avg., 4 long (2008); 22-68, 3.1 avg., 15 long (2009). Interception Returns: 2-33, 16.5 avg., 0 TD, 26 long (2011).

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