To say Alabama State head coach Eddie Robinson Jr. “poked the bear” with his postgame comments following Saturday’s 26-12 homecoming loss to the Jackson State Tigers would be an understatement. Robinson ranted in his postgame interview that while Sanders is doing a great job with his program, “he ain’t SWAC, I’m SWAC.”
That was a shot at Sanders following a pretty hostile postgame midfield handshake that went left quickly. Robinson was insinuating that because he played in the SWAC at Alabama State (and is now the school’s head coach) and Sanders didn’t, that the former NFL star who attended Florida State, wasn’t worthy of claiming the conference he has put on the national map in less than two full seasons.
While Robinson apologized for his actions on Sunday, his apology seemed to be to his team and the ASU community, not Sanders and JSU.
— ASU Athletics 😷 (@BamaStateSports) October 9, 2022
During the Tigers team meeting on Tuesday, Sanders entered the room to the chants of “who is SWAC, I am SWAC,” from his players and had fun with it. It was obviously a response to Robinson’s comments, which Coach Prime naturally took as a slight.
Early Morning Vibes pic.twitter.com/7oCZo93fJU
— COACH PRIME (@DeionSanders) October 11, 2022
He also wore a hoodie with the words on the front and back.
Sanders Says Robinson Was Upset About The Homecoming Result And In Turn Acted Out
The Hornets pushed the heavily-favored Tigers in front of a sellout homecoming crowd of 26,500 at the beautiful ASU Stadium in Montgomery. Robinson’s guys came to play and while Sanders credited them for their effort, he also joked that Robinson mistakenly believed he was going to get a program-changing victory at JSU’s expense.
Per the Tuscaloosa News, in his postgame presser Sanders talked at length about that.
“I think he thought he was gonna get a win. I don’t know why he would’ve ever thought that. … Secondly, he said that I didn’t come to greet him in the center of the field. I don’t know if you understand, but we got here very late. So that expedited our whole process of preparation. So, then we were in like, Let’s go get it mode.”
Sanders says the traffic in and around the stadium played a huge role in the team’s delayed arrival, so he didn’t get a chance to speak to Robinson pregame.
ASU Fans Split On Robinson’s Behavior
While many Hornet fans were OK with Robinson standing up for his team and “Black Belt Nation,” there were those who felt he could’ve handled it better since he is a leader and role model of young Black males. But Robinson did the classy thing and accepted some responsibility in his apology.
Here is what happened between Eddie Robinson Jr. and Deion Sanders at midfield. pic.twitter.com/Xs0gDDjGou
— HBCU Sports (@HBCUSports) October 8, 2022
He says he’s owned it, learned from it, and will be a better person and leader because of it. Now let’s see if Jackson State schedules the Hornets for their 2023 homecoming game,
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