As the reborn XFL readies for its next stage, league officials – including co-owner and Hollywood icon Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson – were in Jackson, Mississippi, Saturday for a showcase event that featured HBCU stars from myriad schools, including host program and Deion Sanders’ Jackson State Tigers.
But appearing on ESPN, Sanders – who effusively praised Johnson and XFL officials for their work with HBCU programs – instead had college realignment as his focus.
Or, more bluntly, college football’s great money-grab. After the Southeastern Conference last summer plundered Oklahoma and Texas from the Big 12 Conference, last month the Big Ten snared both UCLA and USC from the Pac-12.
Everyone, it seems, is now in some form of catch-up mode.
“Well you called it realignment, you can really call it chasing the bag,” Sanders told the network. “That’s all they’re doing, is chasing the bag.
“Everything with realignment is all about, I’m trying to put it nicely because I’m a head coach now, but they’re trying to get money, man. Everybody’s trying to line themselves up properly so their program can prosper. I don’t mind that; I want ours to prosper as well.”
With that approach, Sanders said his Jackson State program – while he also implied other schools – already began exploring potential future options.
“It has a tremendous effect. Sooner or later, some of the prominent schools are going to have to make a decision. What do we want to do? Do we want to sit back in that tradition or do we want to put ourselves in a financial situation that our school prospers? You really gotta factor that in and weigh those options. There are some tremendous that a few of the schools are going to be faced with. We’re already speaking about it.