Deion Sanders is the only person to play in both the Super Bowl and the World Series, not to mention the only player to be a major hit in MLB and score an NFL interception in the same week.
On October 11, 1992, he played in the NFL and was fit for an MLB game….on the same day…in two different cities. That probably beat the time in Florida when he won the 100 and 200 meters in a morning track meet and then started as a center player for the Seminoles baseball team that night.
There is more, of course. Much more, mostly in football. How many players can count both a Super Bowl reception and interception? Just he.
How about scoring NFL touchdowns six different ways (Lush, Reception, Point Return, Kick Back, Intercept, Confusion Recovery)? Just Deion and fellow Pro Football Hall of Famer Bill Dudley, who retired in 1953.
Is Sanders just another world athlete? barely. As coach of the Jackson State FC, not only is he 14-2 in the last 16 games (including 3-0 this season), he’s the only person to ever sign with America’s #1 Rookie (corner quarterback Travis Hunter) FCS School .
And this is not a part-time, celebrity coach. Watch Hunter, who has put his faith and future in Sanders, happily weep on his coach’s shoulder before their first game together.
Perhaps the most confusing mystery of major college football is how Arizona—with its resources, location, weather, etc.—seldom does well. The Sun Devils scored in the top ten at 35 years old (in 1996). He. She Herm Edwards launched Sunday After his defeat by eastern Michigan.
So here we have a potential situation – the seemingly omnipotent program but inexplicably never going out of its way and the man and coach who has spent his life redefining what is possible.
Dion Sanders to Arizona? Now this will become something.
Sanders, of course, coaches Jackson State and has said in the past that he wants to continue his work there, specifically, and at HBCU in general. If so, that’s fine. It’s been an incredible story so far.
However, Sanders has given interviews to major coaching jobs at conferences, including TCU and Arkansas. “I should have had it,” Deion said – in classic Deion style – on the Dan Le Batard Show last winter.
He should definitely get the following. Dion Sanders should be the number one coaching candidate in the country this year without naming Urban Mayer. Until then, Meyer comes with baggage and the promise of a potentially rough ending.
Sanders? He’ll arrive with a whole new flair, noise, and attitude, with goals that seem improbable when first uttered.
This should be especially tempting for Arizona State University, which many agree just needs the right man to become a juggernaut. It’s a city school, a fun school, a great school. Almost everyone (athlete or not) who set foot in Tempe looked around with the same reaction – This is incredible.
The right guy can finally make it matter. Attendance, fan excitement, media, support donations, business support, etc.
Sanders, the son of a legendary drummer, is the king of noise. Once known as “Neon Deion” and “Primetime”, he now refers to himself as “Coach Prime”…at least when he’s not responding to “GOAT” in Aflac ads.
Sanders could potentially be a successful coach anywhere, but that doesn’t mean he should give it a try.
Nebraska is open, after all, but Deion in Lincoln’s cold cornfields seems out of place. Should Auburn be available, that would be very tempting – and put him in the Iron Bowl across from his Aflac co-star, Nick Saban. Will it work well with the historically toxic boosters and small town environment? Can. Maybe not.
Sure, Sanders back at his alma mater would be huge, but Mike Norville has the Seminoles at 3-0, so any possibility might not materialize.
Arizona is a sleeping giant for the right person and it looks like Sanders is checking all the boxes.
If nothing else, he would immediately change his enlistment fortunes. Arizona has not signed a four- or five-star induction into the state since 2017 — it has lost 32 players rated as such by Rivals.com. Almost all of them are from the Phoenix area.
This would be patriotic, though. Sanders can draw vistas of a palm-lined campus located minutes from one of the nation’s largest airports. And don’t forget the transfer market, where Sanders is incredibly aggressive — “We live in the gate,” he once said.
He’s also likely to arrive with half a dozen emerging stars from Jackson State, including, likely, his son, quarterback Shedeur Sanders (10 TDs, 0 interceptions this season).
Perhaps best of all, Sanders has shown that he is more than just a showman. It’s not about one great recruiting victory or getting to a press conference with a band and Escalade.
Jackson State is well organized, well managed and well trained. The little things are what usually hinder former star players or NFL coaches when they return to campus. Not Sanders. Despite dealing with a horrific citywide water failure, JSU has edged its opponents 141-30 this season.
So, will he take it all to the desert, where the promise of great power has been like a mirage for decades?
Can we get Coach Prime to switch to PHX and pick some five-star recruits at Bentley while the rest of the country starts to worry that the behemoth has finally woken up?
Maybe only Dion Sanders knows, but the demons of the Forever Stumbling Sun connect and find out.