Sports Illustrated Names Deion Sanders Sportsman of the Year for 2023

Lauren Victoria Burke NNPA Newswire Contributor

New Colorado Buffaloes Coach Deion Sanders has been named Sports Illustrated’s “Sportsman of the Year.”After all the controversy that came with his decision to leave an HBCU, Jackson State University, Sanders remains a winner even after a losing season. The Colorado Buffaloes record is 4-8.

But the excitement around the Buffaloes, despite the record, led to excitement for all of college football.

Even though the Colorado Buffaloes did not make it to Pac 12 Championship and have lost their last six games, Sanders’ short time as head coach has brought attention and money to a failing sports program in Colorado. Sanders’ son, Star Quarterback Shedeur Sanders, did not finish the season for the Buffaloes after a leg injury.

But the excitement around Deion Sanders, 56, despite the team’s record, has been undeniable. Sanders had already been a legend because of his exceptional skills on the field and his impact on the sports world as a multi-sport athlete and a charismatic personality. Sanders was the first time two-time Super Bowl Champion after winning with the San Francisco 49ers in Super Bowl XXIX and the Dallas Cowboys in Super Bowl XXX. Sanders was known for his exceptional speed and coverage skills, which earned him the nickname “Prime Time.”

Deion Sanders attended Florida State University, where he played both football and baseball. In football, he played as a cornerback and a punt returner. He won the Jim Thorpe Award as the best defensive back in college football. Sanders was also an outstanding baseball player, playing as an outfielder. He was drafted by the New York Yankees in the 30th round of the 1988 MLB Draft.

Even after a season with an unimpressive record Sanders remains optimistic. “Coach Prime” is causing excitement in the same way he did at Jackson State even though the population at Colorado is only 1.3% Black. Sanders is promising improvement next year.

Lauren Victoria Burke is an Independent Investigative Journalist and the Publisher of Black Virginia News. She is a political analyst who appears regularly on #RolandMartinUnfiltered. She can be contacted at and on twitter at @LVBurke.

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