Jaleel Awini grew up in the Denver area and always dreamed of playing football at the University of Colorado in nearby Boulder. Jaleel Awini played quarterback at Rangeview High School in Aurora, and in his senior year took the Raiders to the Class 5A state quarterfinals. That same year, he was named the Gatorade Colorado Football Player of the Year.
He was courted by the University of Colorado for a while, but a shake-up in the coaching staff took him to the Air Force Academy north of Colorado Springs. He had settled on Air Force after receiving full scholarship offers to several D1 schools, including Colorado State University, Vanderbilt and East Washington University.
Two years later he was able to transfer to CU, and after sitting out a year due to eligibility rules, he finally became a Buff.
For most of his CU career Jaleel Awini played linebacker. But in a game against Utah in his junior year, CU’s starting quarterback went down with an injury, and he got into the game behind center. Behind by two touchdowns, Jaleel led the Buffs on a touchdown drive that brought them to within six points.
On the next possession, CU went with another backup quarterback and wound up losing the game, but Jaleel Awini took it in stride. Even though I wish I had more time, I was grateful for the opportunity,” he said. “And I am happy to be back on offense now for my senior year, which might be my last year playing football.”
Jaleel Awini graduated with a degree in Economics in December 2016.