The Colorado Buffaloes and coach Deion Sanders don’t need any outside motivation.
They proved as much with victories over the TCU Horned Frogs and Nebraska Cornhuskers in the first two weeks of the season.
But then Colorado State head coach Jay Norvell had to go and make things “personal” before his team’s Week 3 rivalry game with the Buffs.
Despite a game that was far, far closer than most expected, Colorado walked away with yet another victory to move to 3-0 on the season.
Now the Buffaloes hit the meat of their schedule as they begin Pac-12 play against powerhouses Oregon and USC in the next two weeks.
First up are the Ducks, led by second-year head coach Dan Lanning.
And while Lanning didn’t say anything about Sanders himself, he did take aim at Colorado in a preseason press conference when asked about the Buffaloes leaving the Pac-12 for the Big 12.
“Not a big reaction. I mean, I’m trying to remember what they won to affect this conference. I don’t remember. Do you remember them winning anything? I don’t remember them winning anything,” Lanning said.
Of course, Oregon then announced it was leaving the Pac-12 for the Big Ten shortly thereafter.
On Monday, Lanning had a chance to walk back those comments. But he opted against it.
“I don’t regret anything I’ve said,” he said. “At the end of the day, I wasn’t talking about Deion’s team, I was talking about the past and future for our team. But if that serves as material for them, great. I don’t think it’s going to have any bearing on the game or the success of the game.”
To his credit, Lanning isn’t wrong.
Since joining the Pac-12 in 2011, Colorado has enjoyed just two winning seasons.
But this Colorado team is not those Colorado teams. And this Colorado coach is most definitely not those Colorado coaches.
So Lanning may want to rethink his words next time he decides to make it personal with Coach Prime.