Deion Sanders Campaigns for Jackson State to Be First FCS Team Invited to Bowl Game
With his team undefeated and ranked in the top five of the FCS coaches poll, Jackson State coach Deion Sanders has the Tigers primed for another successful season. Following a SWAC championship in 2021, Sanders has his sights set even higher in ’22: a bid to an FBS bowl.
“Why can’t that be us?” Sanders said, per J.T. Keith of the Clarion-Ledger. “I’m just saying, why can’t that be us? You got teams that are virtually 6-5 going to a bowl game. Ain’t nobody going to see them play, and nobody is turning the channel to witness that foolishness. But you have us, that travels deep and travels heavy.”
Sanders envisions a scenario in which Jackson State (9-0, 6-0 SWAC) could play in an FBS bowl after the Celebration Bowl, which pits the champions of the SWAC and MEAC, two leagues made up of prominent HBCU football programs. There were 41 bowl games played last season, which featured 17 teams with a .500 record or worse. This bowl season has 43 FBS bowl games on the schedule.
FCS schools are ineligible to participate in FBS bowls, so to make Sanders’ vision a reality, a legislative change would need to take place.
“That’s a goal. This is a pre–New Year’s Day bowl game that we would love to have an opportunity to play in,” Sanders said. “Along with FAMU and some of the other wonderful teams that are doing some wonderful things.”
Jackson State can clinch a spot in the SWAC championship game with a win over Alabama A&M at home on Saturday.
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