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Opinion | Southern Heritage Classic: In jeopardy because JSU’s Deion Sanders doesn’t care? | Otis Sanford

ABC24 political analyst and commentator Otis Sanford shared his point of view on Deion Sanders and the Southern Heritage Classic.

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Now that another glorious Southern Heritage Classic is in the books, all the talk post-game, and pre-game for that matter, has been on what many believe is the classic’s uncertain future. And it’s because Jackson State University, one of the two schools involved, intends to make last weekend’s game its last.

Or more precisely, JSU’s celebrity head coach Deion Sanders is no longer interested in the classic. He thinks he can earn a bigger payday for his school elsewhere.

Sanders even added insult to the injury by saying he doesn’t know much about the classic’s 33-year history. What’s more, he doesn’t care. And, like a character in the Godfather movies, Sanders insists this is just business – not personal. He also insists it’s all about the students.

But let’s be real. This is about the inflated ego of one sports star who thinks he’s too big to play in Memphis. Never mind the tradition, the pageantry, the party atmosphere, the impact on local high schools, the recruiting possibilities, and the economic boost for Memphis – as well as for JSU and Tennessee State.

All of that is now jeopardy because Sanders doesn’t care. But is it really in jeopardy? If I know anything about Classic founder Fred Jones, I know that he plans to continue staging the classic – with or without JSU. And it will be glorious again. Because, unlike Sanders, Fred Jones does care.

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