- Deion Sanders said earlier this week that Nick Saban does not want to be called by only his first name.
- He was wrong and Saban made him look silly at SEC Media Days.
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Jackson State head football coach Deion Sanders walked out of a press conference on Tuesday.
Sanders at SWAC Media Day:
A reporter at SWAC Media Day referred to ‘Coach Prime’ as ‘Deion’ and the NFL Hall of Famer falsely claimed that Alabama coach Nick Saban doesn’t like being referred to as his first name.
“You don’t call [Alabama’s] Nick Saban, ‘Nick.’ Don’t call me Deion,” Sanders told Nick Suss from the Clarion Ledger. “[…] if you call Nick [Saban], Nick, you’ll get cussed out on the spot.”
Sanders requested that he be treated the same as Saban, at which point the reporter said that he also calls Saban by his first name, Nick. When the reporter doubled down and called Sanders ‘Deion’ again, he got up and left.
Saban at SEC Media Days:
Well, sure enough, Sanders was proven wrong a day later. Saban took the podium at SEC Media Days on Wednesday.
The greatest coach in college football history was called ‘Nick’ multiple times and couldn’t have cared less. Believe it or not, he didn’t cuss anyone out either.
Breaking news: Alabama coach Nick Saban was called “Nick” 8 times by reporters during his press conference at SEC Media Days. And didn’t “cuss out” one reporter #DontCallMeDeion #CallMeMrPrimeTime
— Brett McMurphy (@Brett_McMurphy) July 21, 2021
In fact, at one point, reporter Mike Bianchi of the Orlando Sentinel made a joke about what happened with Sanders. Saban didn’t laugh because he just doesn’t care, and nobody else did either because it wasn’t funny.
Bianchi begins his question to Saban: “I’mma call you Coach instead of Nick, if that’s alright.”
Because Saban doesn’t give a crap. And not many there did either. #SECMD21 #SEC #RollTide pic.twitter.com/0Uqg7c1pAE
— CHRIS TORELLO (@TorelloSports) July 21, 2021
Jump ahead to the 23:12 mark to hear the silence:
To go one step further, even though he clearly didn’t care, a reporter asked Saban how he — and other coaches (cough cough, Deion Sanders) — should be addressed. Saban cracked a smile while the room laughed and proceeded to completely debunk Sanders’ statement.
“It’s not really something that’s really that significant to me,” he said.
Coach? Nick? Coach Saban?
Alabama head coach Nick Saban fields a question at SEC Media Days on how he prefers the media to address him. "I respond to just about anything. I've been called just about everything." #RollTide #BamaFactor #SECMD21 pic.twitter.com/kBczworkn4
— #WVTM13 (@WVTM13) July 21, 2021
Near the end of 2020, TV reporter Rick Karle hilariously got upset with another member of the media for calling Coach Saban just ‘Saban.” Perhaps that is what Sanders was wrongly referring to? Either way, it is a tough look for Deion.
If six-time national champion SEC coach Nick Saban doesn’t care, why should zero-time national champion SWAC coach Deion Sanders?