Jackson State coach Deion Sanders was preparing to leave to take the job as head coach at Colorado, sources told ESPN on Friday.
An announcement is expected late Saturday or early Sunday, sources told ESPN’s Adam Rittenberg.
With Jackson State on the cusp of Saturday’s SWAC title game, Sanders and his staff have spent the week researching both potential members of his field staff and support staff in Colorado and getting them to join him in Boulder, said sources.
A source told ESPN Friday night that Sanders’s outreach included a call to a prominent player on the NCAA transfer portal, who encouraged him not to make a decision because Sanders was on his way to Colorado to recruit him there.
Another source close to a player who has signed to play in Colorado said that earlier this week a current State official called Jackson to inquire about the player’s Colorado signing. He also asked him for a movie of the player to rate him.
“They weren’t exactly hiding anything,” the source said. “It seemed like a done deal.”
Internally in Colorado, support staff were seen preparing material for Sanders’ hiring, sources said. There is a widespread expectation in the building that Sanders will get there this weekend, although staff have not been officially informed.
“They are not doing a good job of hiding this,” said a staff source. “If he backs out of this deal, it would be a huge problem for Colorado.”
The Colorado Council of Regency called a special meeting for Sunday at 12 p.m. ET as a sort of placeholder, as it would only take place if Colorado and Sanders figured out the details of his contract. Sanders is expected to fly in from Jackson State after the game.
Sanders has said publicly that he was offered the job in Colorado. All signs point to him accepting it in the next 48 hours, as all the other candidates Colorado hired faltered after interviewing weeks ago.
Sanders has played 26-5 for the last three seasons at Jackson State and 22-2 for the last two years. Jackson State (11-0) is playing Southern (7-4), a team they defeated 35-0 earlier in the year, for Saturday’s SWAC title. Sanders is expected to update his team on his departure shortly after the game.
Sanders is only in his third season as a college football coach.
Colorado fired Karl Dorrell as coach in October after a 0-5 start and an 8-15 record overall in three years. Mike Sanford filled in as an interim and finished the year 1-6.
Sanders is a legendary American athlete and a member of both the Pro Football and College Football Halls of Fame. He played 14 seasons in the NFL, won two Super Bowls and played for five different Major League Baseball teams from 1989-2001.
https://www.espn.com/college-football/story/_/id/35168153/sources-deion-sanders-preparing-accept-colorado-coaching-job Deion Sanders preparing to accept Colorado coaching job