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Shedeur Sanders gets keys to JSU offense

Published: Aug. 25, 2021 at 8:59 PM CDT
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JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - Shedeur Sanders and Deion Sanders will always be connected. After all, they are literally blood.

However, the elder Sanders is giving his son some autonomy when it comes to the Jackson State offense this season. There will be no ‘ease in’ period for the true freshman quarterback, having been given full control of the offense by his father and the rest of the Tigers’ coaching staff.

“He’s coming along,” Deion said of Shedeur after Wednesday morning’s practice. “He can go up to (the line of scrimmage) regardless of what we call to get us in the right situation. No coaches are perfect, we don’t all call the right things, but it’s up to him to see what the defense presents and get us in the right situation and get the ball into the hands of playmakers.

“That’s his responsibility and he is capable of doing it.”

A four-star prospect according to 247sports, Shedeur will be the highest-rated quarterback coming directly out of high school to ever start for Jackson State. And he was always destined for this role since he flipped his commitment from Florida Atlanta after his father took the JSU head coaching job back in 2020.

Having had to watch the games from the sidelines last spring, but still be able to practice with the team, the younger Sanders will look to make a seamless transition to college after a decorated high school career at Trinity Christian (TX) where he posted a 27-1 record with two state championships in his final two seasons.

“He’s definitely a leader,” said Deion. “He’s been a leader since day one on this campus.”

Shedeur is just one of what Deion estimates is 70 new players on the JSU roster just from the spring to this fall. While the record took a bit of a hit late in the schedule, The Tigers head coach is appreciative of what the spring season gave him in terms of his first foray into college coaching and a chance to essentially try out players in real-game situations.

Those four months paved the way for what Deion hopes will be an historic fall for Jackson State.

“Had it not been for the spring, we’d be totally different right now,” he explained. “We’ve improved at every position. It’s going to be a much better unit all the way around because of the depth that we have at every position.

“We turned this roster over, this is a whole new roster and a whole new thing what we’re doing here.”

That new thing will get its first chance on the field on September 5 when the Tigers travel down to Miami, FL to take on, future SWAC colleague, Florida A&M in the Orange Blossom Classic. JSU will follow that with a trip up to Memphis, TN the following weekend in the Southern Heritage Classic against Tennessee State who, like JSU, has an NFL Hall of Famer as a head coach in Eddie George.

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