JSU football coach slams SWAC over nameless jerseys, vows to pay for upgrades.
Updated: Oct 29, 2021
Jackson State football coach Deion Sanders had a message for schools in the Southwestern Athletic Conference following the Tigers' 7-6 win over Florida A&M on Sunday: Put players' last names on the back of their jerseys.
"Turn around, Aubrey," Sanders said during his postgame news conference, speaking to JSU linebacker Aubrey Miller Jr.
The second-year coach then pointed to Miller's name on the back of his jersey.
"Why don't we do that in this SWAC?" Sanders asked. "Is it that expensive to put their name on the back of the jersey?"
"Don't you think his mom and them, want to see the baby name on the back of the jerseys? Don't you think his siblings, his friends, his family, his loved ones?"
Sanders has been an outspoken advocate of leveling the playing field for athletics programs at historically Black colleges and universities. As far as the nameless jerseys are concerned, schools individually determine whether names appear on jerseys. The SWAC does not have a policy on it.
Florida A&M's jerseys did not have names printed on the back during Sunday's game.
"That's the kind of stuff we take for granted," Sanders said. "I don't. I'm very detailed. That guy worked his butt off, did what he had to do, changed his whole composite of his thought process. We could at least put his darn name on the back of his jersey."
"What is that?" Sanders continued. "An extra $5 a jersey? I'll take care of it for the whole SWAC if they do it."