Jackson State coach Deion Sanders has one thing on his mind heading into the Southern Heritage Classic on Saturday: dominate.
“We’re going there for a reason and that’s to dominate,” Sanders said. “That’s the only reason we’re going. We’re not going for anything else. We’re not going for the Classic. I’m not even going for my dear friend who I love, Coach Eddie George.”
This could be Tennessee State’s last meeting in the Classic, following a 28-year rivalry that began in September 1990. Jackson State ended their deal in February. The contract was not due to expire before 2024.
Sanders said he doesn’t know if this will be the last Southern Heritage Classic to involve the Tigers.
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“I don’t know,” Sanders said. “I’m not calling this shot. I’m making recommendations but I’m not calling this shot. In business, I just want us to benefit. I want us to benefit and the State of Tennessee. Coach George, I think he feels the same way. We have some of the same feelings towards those classics.
According to Sanders, giving up a home game for a classic is a problem when Jackson State could host another game.
“I just hate giving up a home game when we could be playing it at home,” Sanders said. “We welcome at least 45,000 (fans) on a bad day. I would rather have this game at home.”
The Tigers earned a 38-16 win in the Classic last season, behind 362 passing yards and three touchdowns from quarterback Shedeur Sanders. It was also a coming out party for James Houston and Aubrey Miller defensively. The duo combined for 20 tackles, 7.5 for loss and 6.5 sacks.
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Jackson State takes on Grambling State at 1 p.m. on Sept. 10. 17 for their home opener. Sanders explained how important the program is to the city and why Jackson’s water crisis needs to be addressed ahead of time.
“We better get that water right before our first game here,” Deion said. “We have to do this.
“We want to give (our fans) what they want. They want to see us go down. They want to see us play. are blessed and able to do, it instills hope in everyone, it brings everyone together.