Deion Sanders Responds to Nick Saban’s Pay-for-Play Comments: ‘We Need to Talk Publicly – Not Privately’

by Tyler Mansfield

Nick Saban messed up with the comments he made this week. Everyone knows it – including himself. Although he’s arguably one of the best college football coaches ever, Saban still makes mistakes. He should’ve never signaled out Jimbo Fisher and Texas A&M or Deion Sanders and Jackson State, but he did. Now, he’s dealing with the consequences for his actions.

Nearly the entire college football world is against Saban on this matter – you would think even some Alabama fans are, too. As for Sanders, he’s certainly not happy with what Saban – who happens to be his friend and partner in Aflac commercials – said about his Jackson State program.

In case you’ve forgotten, Saban made the claim that Sanders and Jackson State paid star recruit Travis Hunter $1 million to play football for the HBCU. After Saban said he found out about it in the newspaper, “Prime Time” wasted no time clapping back and defending his team. Furthermore, Sanders has made it clear that he’s not going to accept a private apology from Saban.

“I haven’t talked to Coach Saban,” Sanders said, via Andscape. “I’m sure he’s tried to call. We need to talk publicly — not privately. What you said was public. That doesn’t require a conversation. Let’s talk publicly and let everybody hear the conversation. You can’t do that publicly and call privately. No, no, no.

“I still love him. I admire him. I respect him. He’s the magna cum laude of college football and that’s what it’s going to be because he’s earned that. But he took a left when he should’ve stayed right. I’m sure he’ll get back on course. I ain’t tripping.”

According to Andscape, Saban contacted Sanders’ representatives, but he wasn’t interested in chatting. It appears that the Alabama head coach will have no choice but to apologize to Deion in a public manner.

Did Saban Use His Shots at Texas A&M, Jackson State to Alert Boosters?

Nick Saban and Alabama have had top-tier recruiting class after top-tier recruiting class throughout his time in Tuscaloosa. With the Crimson Tide now starting to miss out on some players due to Name, Image and Likeness deals, Saban appears worried.

With that said, Sanders believes Saban made his shots to alert Alabama’s boosters.

“Coach Saban wasn’t talking to me,” Sanders said. “Coach Saban wasn’t talking to Jimbo Fisher. He was talking to his boosters. He was talking to his alumni. He was talking to his givers. He was trying to get money.

“That was what he was doing. He was just using us to get to where he was trying to get to.”