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Week 1 of college football started with a bang. We got our first major upset of the season as the Colorado Buffaloes took down the No. 17 TCU Horned Frogs. A first-year head coach with a completely new roster toppled last year’s Natty runners-up in a 45-42 shootout, signaling one thing: Saturdays are back, baby!
So leave it to Jemele Hill to throw a wet blanket over all of the excitement.
The former ESPN host took to X Saturday to do what she does best: cry racism.
“Really interesting listening to some of the commentary around this Colorado-TCU game,” Hill wrote. “Lot of coded stuff.”
For those unfamiliar, “coded” language is a way to describe seemingly neutral terms with racist undertones.
So let’s run through some of the commentary surrounding this Colorado-TCU matchup to see if we, too, can spot the racism.
How would TCU respond after getting embarrassed in last season’s National Championship game? How long will it take Colorado coach Deion Sanders to settle into his new role? Will the Buffaloes’ completely restructured roster fare better than last year’s squad, which finished dead last in the Pac-12? Is Travis Hunter officially in the running for a Heisman Trophy?
All of these are legitimate football storylines.
But don’t ever underestimate Jemele’s ability to find racism where there isn’t any.
Jemele Hill Calls Out Criticism of Deion Sanders
Coach Prime has been college football’s most polarizing figure this offseason.
He takes over as Colorado’s head coach after spending three seasons at Jackson State, an HBCU. And as soon as he set foot in Boulder, he completely overhauled the program.
So much so that the team now looks nothing like it did just a year ago. He brought the players he wanted with him (including his son, quarterback Shedeur Sanders) and sent the others packing. In fact, Colorado returns just 10 scholarship players from 2022 with 68 new scholarship players on the roster.
He acted more like an NFL GM than a collegiate head coach. That didn’t sit right with a lot of people, including many other college coaches.
But in the book of Jemele Hill, questioning or criticizing a Black person automatically makes you a racist.
And Sanders seemed to echo those sentiments in his post-game press conference, which Hill applauded.
“We’re doing things that have never been done, and that makes people uncomfortable,” Sanders said. “When you see a confident Black man sitting up here talking his talk, walking his walk, coaching 75% African Americans in the locker room, that’s kind of threatening. Oh, they don’t like that.”
Give me a break.
For the record, I like Deion. The man knows how to entertain, and he brings excitement to a program that’s been abysmal for a long time. I rooted for Colorado yesterday.
But to suggest his critics are racially motivated is entirely disingenuous.
Was it racism that made Sanders a huge star at Florida State and then later in the NFL? Was there racism in the ’90s when little kids across America had posters of Prime Time hanging in their bedrooms? And was it racism that made Deion millions of dollars and catapulted him into a wildly successful career in media and now coaching?
Of course not. And if Deion and Jemele are trying to argue that people are “uncomfortable” with a team full of Black athletes, then they must not watch sports very often.
So let’s just enjoy the Colorado Buffaloes for the fun football story they are. Deion said he’d bring the talent to win, and he delivered.
Granted, he’s going to lose at some point. But Jemele Hill will probably think that’s racist, too.