The hype and pageantry that led up to Sunday’s Orange Blossom Classic between the Jackson State Tigers and FAMU Rattlers was much better than the actual game that took place at Hard Rock Stadium in Miami, Florida.
The fans of the Tigers were treated to an aerial and defensive show at the expense of the Rattlers in a 59-3 blowout. The game was a laugher from the early minutes as the Tigers jumped out to a 24-3 halftime lead, only to tack on another 35 points after halftime.
Tigers sophomore quarterback and reigning Jerry Rice Award winner, Shedeur Sanders was dynamite in his season debut, passing for 323 yards (29-for-33 and five touchdowns). The strong-armed Sanders began the game 17 of 17 before his first incompletion.
The extremely confident Shedeur sounded a lot like his dad, Coach Prime, during a sideline interview after he’d been removed from the game.
The ESPN reporter asked Sanders how it felt out there in the heat of battle.
“2 felt comfortable. 2 felt very comfortable with just preparation in the week, and coaches got me ready for this moment. 2 got a great O-line. Let’s just say that.”
The ESPN reporter asked Shedeur is his speaking of himself in third person a tribute to Coach Prime, who often did that when he was a player?
“I didn’t know (Deion Sanders) did that. 2 got that from himself. O-line did an excellent job. The way they were able to protect me, keep me upright, I can’t ask for no better. Defense did better than we did last year.
“You gotta understand we don’t just say we’re gonna dominate to say it, to write it on the board. We mean it, we live by it every day, and that’s what’s preached in the locker room and that’s what we stand for. This was a big, big, big opportunity. We chose the culture this way.”
“Look, we just scored again. This ain’t nothing, we chose to come to this spot.”
His father agreed that Shedeur’s third-person interview technique makes him a chip off the old block.
Confidence is exuding in Jackson, Mississippi, but they must also channel that a bit and be careful not to disrespect or show up other opponents.
Black College Football Player of the Year Award Spotlight: @GoJSUTigersFB QB Shedeur Sanders completed 29 of 33 passes for 323 yards and 5 TDs in the Tigers win over Florida A&M pic.twitter.com/iNgacb3rlx
— BlackCollegeFootball (@BCFHOF) September 5, 2022
Can Sanders And The Tigers Keep Up Their Dominance?
The chances of Sanders and the Tigers drubbing teams in the SWAC weekly aren’t that farfetched. Will it happen? They probably shouldn’t get used to 50-plus-point wins, but with the weaponry at their disposal on both sides of the football, they’re going to outclass just about every opponent on their schedule. If they do meet a challenge, they will be prepared to handle it.
Coach Prime was in such a great mood at game’s end that he had his freshman placekicker repeat everything he said in Spanish.
— justasisterfromthechi (@justasisterfro2) September 5, 2022
Tigers Have Championship-Or-Bust Mentality
After coming up short in last season’s Celebration Bowl, following their first SWAC championship since 2007, Coach Prime and the Tigers have a championship or bust mentality. That’s the way they’re thinking in Jackson, and next week they travel to Memphis to face former NFL player Eddie George and his Tennessee State Tigers in what it likely the final Southern Heritage Classic.
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