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The ‘Celebration Bowl’ between Jackson State and North Carolina Central will go down as one of the best bowl games of 2022. After winning the HBCU National Championship last Saturday in Atlanta, NCCU head coach Trei Oliver wasn’t done with Deion Sanders.
The buildup to the game was all centered around it being Deion Sanders last game at Jackson State before taking the Colorado job. It started the night before when Jackson State athletic director allegedly addressed Oliver’s team as North Carolina A&T State. It carried over to Saturday, as North Carolina Central was preparing to take the field, according to Oliver.
“Pregame, we’re supposed to come out at a certain time before the national anthem. For whatever reason, the team wasn’t ready, so they stopped everything. My guys sat in the tunnel for 10 minutes waiting to come out. But it didn’t matter. … They’re gonna put some respect on our name and Black colleges,” Oliver said following the win.
The game itself as fascinating, with NCCU winning in overtime and claiming the HBCU national title. Entering the game, the Eagles were anywhere from 15 to 17 point underdogs, only giving them further motivation for the game. But, along with all the attention being put toward Deion Sanders, rightfully so when it comes to television ratings, NCCU felt slighted.
The Eagles ended up stopping Jackson State on 4th and goal to win the game 41-34.
One Last Joke At The Expense Of Deion Sanders
Following the win and wrapping up the season, North Carolina Central’s Trei Oliver met with the media. During his zoom availability, the head coach had one parting shot or joke for Colorado officials in regards to Deion Sanders.
“I will say this right here, Colorado probably could have got me for half the price. So I don’t know if the ink is dry on the contract, because I know they had to wait after the game, but Colorado, if you’re having any second thoughts, contact my agent.”
Take it however you want, but the reigning national champions weren’t feeling the love in ‘Coach Prime’s’ last game at Jackson State. Now, Oliver can enjoy the offseason and we can only hope their path’s cross again one day on the field.