Deion Sanders’ first in-person appearance on SWAC Media Day ended abruptly on Tuesday after a reporter referred to the second-year Jackson State coach by first name.
Nick Suss, a reporter for Clarion Ledger (Jackson, Mississippi), called him “Deion,” prompting Sanders to say he wanted to be treated like Alabama coach Nick Saban.
“You don’t call Nick Saban, ‘Nick.’ Don’t call me Deion, ”Sanders told Suss (according to the Clarion Ledger). “If you call Nick, Nick, you’re going to get yelled at right away, so don’t do this to me.” Treat me like Nick.
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Suss, who according to the Clarion Ledger has covered several rhythms over the years, told his post that he regularly uses first names in interviews. He said this included conversations with Saban, as well as Ole coach Miss Lane Kiffin and Mississippi State baseball coach Chris Lemonis, who led the Bulldogs to the first-ever National Championship in the school with a victory in the 2021 University World Series.
“When I interview people, I call them by first name,” Suss told the Clarion Ledger. “Whether it’s someone I’ve worked with for years or someone I’m talking to for the first time. That’s true of Ole Miss coaches and rhythm players, Mississippi State coaches and players. and Southern Miss when I help cover their teams and, as recently as January, even Sanders. “
Sanders addressed the interaction on Twitter after leaving the event, calling Suss’ choice of words “insanity.”
This isn’t the first time Sanders has been at the center of a bizarre incident while coaching Jackson State.
Sanders, whose team went 4-3 in his first year with the Tigers, claimed his personal items were stolen when he made his coaching debut in February 2021. A Jackson state official said that the items had been misplaced and then recovered, but Sanders publicly denied report, claiming his items had been stolen.
No, it was stolen but they got it back. It was stolen from my personal bag in my office and my assistant caught the gentleman stealing it but she was alone. No miscommunication my man https://t.co/foXTKwqsQC
– COACH PRIME (@DeionSanders) February 22, 2021
Say this for Sanders: his tenure at Jackson State has never been boring.