Alabama head coach Nick Saban is drawing the ire of Jackson State head coach Deion Sanders following comments he made while discussing Name, Image, and Likeness (NIL) earlier this week. While speaking at an event, Saban directly mentioned programs like Jackson State, Texas A&M, and Miami that he believes are operating outside of what NIL is supposed to truly represent.
In his reference to the Tigers, Saban stated that they paid a player $1 million dollars to come to their school. It's obvious that he's talking about the No. 1 prospect in the 2022 class, Travis Hunter. After being committed to Florida State for over a year, Hunter flipped to Jackson State on Early Signing Day.
“We have a rule right now that said you cannot use name, image and likeness to entice a player to come to your school. Hell, read about it in the paper!” Saban said according to AL.com. “I mean, Jackson State paid a guy a million dollars last year that was a really good Division I player to come to school. It was in the paper and they bragged about it. Nobody did anything about it.”
In the aftermath of a historical signing for an HBCU program, rumors surfaced that Hunter was enticed by a massive NIL deal. Sanders has continually shot down those reports throughout the offseason.
Following Saban's comments, Sanders fired back on social media that he plans to address the alleged lie. After being sent the quotes by his son, Sanders stated that Jackson State doesn't have to fork out money to land talented players.
"You best believe I will address that LIE Coach SABAN told tomorrow. I was awakened by my son Shedeur Sanders that sent me the article stating that WE PAID Travis Hunter a Million to play at Jackson State! We as a PEOPLE don't have to pay our PEOPLE to play with our PEOPLE."
Everyone loves a good offseason drama, especially when it involves one of the most polarizing figures in the sport against the top coach that college football has ever seen. Interestingly enough, Sanders and Saban have worked together in Aflac commercials as of last year. Those might be a little more heated moving forward.
To this point, the only NIL deal that Hunter has made public is with J5 Caffe, a black-owned coffee company that is based in Mississippi. Recently, Hunter claimed that he doesn't have any new endorsements on Instagram.
Stick with NoleGameday for more coverage of Florida State football throughout the summer.
Follow Dustin Lewis on Twitter