“It’s just different than a lot of places,” Colorado Buffaloes head coach Mike MacIntyre said of Colorado. “It’s a spectacular place.”

Glowing with the purple mountain’s majesty and more sunshine than the rest of the country realizes, Colorado is an amazing place. It has also started to produce some solid football players at the high school level; players that MacIntyre wants to have come to the University of Colorado.

“We want to keep the guys that we feel like fit our program, that are great players in the state of Colorado, we want them to be here to play,” he said.

When things became official on National Signing Day on Wednesday, CU had the 25th best recruiting class according to ESPN. Perhaps even more impressive was that several of the standouts came from right here in Colorado, including the player that is perhaps the classes’ crown jewel, offensive lineman Jake Moretti, who decommitted from Ohio State.

“You get to play in front of family and friends, said Moretti, who attended Pomona High School. “I grew up here, and it’s been cool watching Colorado turn around.”

Of the 27 players that comprised the 2017 class, five hail from the Centennial State. Though they chose to stay, a few of them had offers elsewhere, including tackle Heston Paige, who hails from Highlands Ranch, Colo.

“His dad grew up in Colorado and went to UCLA,” MacIntyre said. “Heston had opportunities to go out of state too, but he wanted to stay here.”

That was also the case with late-blooming nose tackle Jalen Sami from Colorado Springs.

“It was kind of funny, after he committed to us, that night Ole Miss called him and tried to get him,” MacIntyre recalled.

Rounding out the Coloradans are linebacker/defensive end/tight end Dante Sparaco, who gained national exposure after transferring to IMG Academy (a high school powerhouse in Florida) and his former Cherry Creek teammate Jon Van Diest, who MacIntyre described as a “Tasmanian devil.”

“He has that motor,” he said. “If you’ve watched him play in high school, that’s what you see.”

There is only one University of Colorado, with top-flight local talent now wanting to bring their talents to Boulder (thanks in no small part to it’s sudden ascension in the Pac-12), they could cement their place squarely on the map for years to come.