Reports: Colorado S Shilo Sanders, Deion's son, facing NIL questions after filing for bankruptcy, $12 million assault lawsuit

A high school security guard won $12 million lawsuit after alleging Shilo Sanders broke his neck in 2015

Shilo Sanders, the son of US football star Deion Sanders, presents a creation for the Louis Vuitton Menswear Ready-to-wear Fall-Winter 2024/2025 collection as part of the Paris Fashion Week, in Paris on January 16, 2024. (Photo by ALAIN JOCARD / AFP) (Photo by ALAIN JOCARD/AFP via Getty Images)
An incident from Shilo Sanders' high school days has followed him into the last season of his college career. (Photo by ALAIN JOCARD/AFP via Getty Images)

Colorado safety Shilo Sanders, the son of head coach Deion Sanders, is facing questions about his NIL income after declaring bankruptcy in the wake of losing an $11.89 million assault lawsuit, according to Westword and Sports Illustrated.

A state court reportedly found in 2022 that Sanders had committed assault and battery against John Darjean, a security guard at Triple A Academy, the high school branch of the since-shuttered Focus Academies charter school. The incident in question reportedly occurred in 2015, when Shilo was a high schooler and Deion was the school's CEO.

Court documents reportedly allege that Darjean escorted Shilo to in-school suspension for violating the school's no-phone policy, at which point Shilo called his mother, Pilar Sanders. One of Deion's assistant coaches then arrived at Darjean's office and gave him a phone with Deion on the call. When Deion was told Shilo was talking to Pilar, who divorced Deion in 2013, the coach told the guard to confiscate the phone.

At that point, Shilo allegedly slammed his elbow into Darjean's chest and continued to hit him after he fell. Darjean was taken to the hospital in an ambulance and later claimed he had “sustained severe and permanent injuries including a broken neck, damage to his cervical spine, permanent neurological injuries and irreversible incontinence.”

Shilo reportedly admitted to an altercation in bankruptcy court, but denied parts of Darjean's claims, including Deion's instruction to take the phone. He also claimed he was acting in self-defense, with Darjean instigating the incident.

Shilo reportedly filed for bankruptcy last October with the money still not paid, and his ability to do so is now a topic of contention.

The profile of Shilo and his brother Shedeur rose significantly in their first year at Colorado, where Deion took over as head coach after two years at Jackson State. Shilo was the leading tackler on a much-hyped team that ended up sputtering to a 4-8 record, but still received enormous attention for Deion's reputation as a paradigm-breaker.

Anyone who follows modern college athletics will know that social media fame frequently leads to NIL income. Shilo has more than 1 million followers on Instagram, where he doesn't exactly project a modest lifestyle.

However, Sanders reportedly claimed to have only $320,477 to his name last December, with his assets consisting primarily of the above Mercedes and a Robin Hood investing account. That number was down from $477,881 in October.

Darjean's attorneys reportedly took issue with Shilo's filing not documenting some of his other possessions, which he has shown off publicly. From Westword:

“Contrary to the schedules, Shilo has admitted acquiring vast amounts of high-end and expensive clothing,” the filing reads. “For example, on his YouTube Channel posted on May 4, 2023, he states, ‘Alright we at the Louis (Vuitton) Store I am trying to spend at least $50,00.00 today.’”

None of the items displayed on Shilo's social media were documented in the disclosure, the filing notes. In response, Shilo's attorneys argue that he is not obligated to itemize and give value to individual items of personal property.

Darjean's attorneys also reportedly objected to the lack of mention of Shilo's various NIL partnerships, which include Instagram promotions of KFC, TurboTax and Oikos yogurt. You can see another one for Meta Quest here:

Sanders is entering his sixth college season and will likely be starting again for Colorado in its first season in the Big 12. His father has made it very clearly he expects him to be a top pick in the 2025 NFL Draft.