College football: Deion Sanders gifts Colorado players sunglasses after rival's slight


Sept. 15 (UPI) -- Deion Sanders responded to a slight from rival coach Jay Norvell by providing his entire Colorado roster with sunglasses during a meeting in Boulder, revving up tension for Saturday's game against Colorado State.

Sanders presented the Buffaloes will the glasses Thursday. The Buffaloes (2-0) will take on the rival Rams (0-1) on Saturday at Folsom Field in Boulder.

Norvell alluded to Sanders' typical hat-and-shades attire during his radio show Wednesday night, intimating that the coach is being disrespectful to others by sporting the wardrobe during interviews.

He also implied that Rams players aren't receiving enough positive attention ahead of the game, which will air on ESPN, compared to the polarizing Buffaloes.

"I sat down with ESPN, and I don't care if they hear it in Boulder. I took my hat off and glasses off and said, 'When I talk to grown ups, I take my hat and glasses off,'" Novell said. "That's what my mother taught me.

"They aren't going to like us no matter what we say or do. It doesn't matter, so let's go up there and play."

Sanders told his players at Wednesday's practice that he took the slight personally.

"They messed around and made it personal," Sanders said. "It was just going to be a good game."

Sanders told reporters Wednesday that he was "glad he said that," when asked about Norvell's comments. He followed that comment by providing Blenders sunglasses to his entire team.

"I realize [that] not only are we going to kick their butts, because it's personal, it's going to be business," Sanders said at the meeting. "But it's also pleasure."

The No. 18 Buffaloes, who went 1-11 last season, are 23.5-point favorites to beat the Rams. They started the 2023 campaign with a 45-42 win over TCU. They beat Nebraska 36-14 on Saturday in Boulder.

Sanders and the hosts of First Take all wore sunglasses Friday during a broadcast on ESPN. The Pro Football Hall of Famer, known throughout his career for his "Prime Time" nickname and flashy wardrobe, said he never planned to tone down his style while working his way up the college coaching ranks.

"I've always been that," Sanders said of his personality. "This is just a different tool I'm using, but it's the same game."

Sanders' son, Shedeur Sanders, leads the nation with 451.5 passing yards per game for Colorado. He totaled six touchdown passes, no interceptions and 903 passing yards through his first two starts.

The Buffaloes are tied for eighth in turnover margin. They rank 15th in total offense.