Deion Sanders believes Colorado fighting in practice is a 'great thing'

On3 imageby:Grant Grubbs11/09/23


Andy Staples Week 11 Picks: Arizona at Colorado | 11.06.23

It’s not a secret that Deion Sanders‘ coaching style is unconventional. During an appearance on “The Colorado Football Coaches Show” on Thursday, Sanders reminded fans just how irregular his strategies for success are.

“We’ve had a great week of practice. We had a couple of fights, which I like,” Sanders said. “It’s a great thing. I always want to know who won because I keep records. I don’t break them up. Some coaches break them up. I don’t.

“Some guys fight hoping for the break up. No, we’re going to let you go,” Sanders said. “I love it. They’ve been getting after it. It’s almost like a rededication. It’s almost like a refocus. I love where we are. We’ve had great practices this week, offense, defense, as well as special teams.”

Rededication is a spiritual term, and it’s appropriate. Colorado will need a near-miracle to turn its season around. After falling to Oregon State 26-19, the team is on a three-game losing streak. With two of its three remaining opponents in the AP Top 25, Colorado’s final stretch will be brutal.

Nonetheless, the Buffaloes showed progress in their most recent loss. Following a sluggish first half, Colorado outscored the Beavers 16-12 in the final two quarters. The late surge is a promising sign for Colorado’s new play-caller, Pat Shurmur.

Shurmur replaced Sean Lewis as the team’s primary play-caller following back-to-back losses. While Shurmur hopes to ease some of the Buffaloes’ anger, Sanders doesn’t mind the extra aggression. After all, this isn’t the first time Sanders has encouraged intrasquad fighting.

Colorado must fight its opponents, not itself

In August, Colorado players got into a scuffle at practice. As assistant coaches lunged between the players, Sanders watched from afar. When everyone settled down, he delivered a poignant message.

“I seen two of you walking off, over there, and you’ve got a key teammate fighting,” Sanders said. “Where they do that at? Where they do that at?”

Not here, his players replied.

“If one fights, we all fight,” Sanders said. “You understand that? I don’t want to see you all walking off when somebody’s fighting. Never again.”

Colorado must channel its fight against opponents. Currently sitting with a 4-5 record, the team has to win two of its final three outings to reach a bowl game. The Buffaloes will begin their late-season hunt with a matchup against Arizona.

On Saturday, Colorado will host the Arizona Wildcats at 2 p.m. ET. The game will be broadcast on the Pac-12 Network.