Colorado head coach Deion Sanders recently addressed the NCAA’s investigation into Michigan over allegations of sign-stealing.
“I don’t know how accurate that stuff is,” Sanders said Tuesday, according to ESPN’s Mark Schlabach. “I mean, everybody’s trying to get an edge. Everyone’s trying to get an edge wherever they can. You can have someone’s whole game plan. They could mail it to you. You’ve still got to stop it.”
Michigan is accused of using unnamed individuals to attend games of scheduled opponents and other potential College Football Playoff contenders to steal the signs. The Wolverines recently suspended football analyst Connor Stalions, who’s reportedly at the center of the NCAA’s investigation.
Stalions apparently purchased tickets in his own name for more than 30 games over the past three years at 11 different Big Ten schools. Electronic records have revealed that Stalions also bought tickets to the last two SEC title games, The Associated Press reports. Sign-stealing isn’t prohibited in college football, but in-person scouting of opponents has been banned since 1994.
Sanders said there’s a big difference between stealing signs in football and baseball. The Pro Football Hall of Fame cornerback was also an outfielder with multiple MLB teams during his playing career.
“In football, it’s not as pronounced as baseball,” he added. “If I know a curveball is coming, I got you. With football, I don’t give a darn if you know a sweep is coming, you still got to stop it. … It’s a physical game. You got to stop it, so that’s a little tough. I don’t buy into a lot of this stuff that someone’s stealing this, stealing that. I don’t buy into a lot of that. You still got to play the game.”
Sanders joined Colorado this year after three seasons as Jackson State’s head coach.