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Deion Sanders' Jackson State football team has faced plenty of issues amid the Mississippi floods.
He said the team was in “crisis mode” before its season opener against Florida A&M — which was moved from Mississippi to Florida — as many members on the team did not have reasonable living situations, most without clean water.
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Sanders also had to displace some of his players from campus and give them accommodations in a nearby hotel.
But Sanders is no stranger to turbulent times as the team's head coach — he was brought in at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic in September 2020.
“The AD brought me in during the pandemic. It was turbulent times then,” Sanders said via The Shadow League. “Touch and go. Whether you’re going to play this week, play next week. Whether we’re going to have players eligible or not. … Dealt with a snowstorm. Now we dealing with a water crisis. One thing that I’ve garnished and I’ve gathered, Jackson, Mississippi, is resilient.”
With plenty of Jackson natives still needing help, Sanders thinks his squad — a team that went 11-1 last year — can be the heroes their city can lean on.
JACKSON STATE'S DEION SANDERS SAYS TEAM IS IN ‘CRISIS MODE' AMID MISSISSIPPI FLOODS
“All they want is a little hope. Just let them peek and see a little light, and they’re going to make it to the next day,” he said. “And I promise you they’re going to be there. Ain’t nobody complaining. Ain’t nobody tripping. They might be uneasy because they want information. The governor, mayor are doing a phenomenal job to me in supporting that.”
“You get sound bites, so you really don’t hear the whole story. But all they want is hope and desire. And guess what? The Jackson State University football team gave them that. And we plan on giving them that.”
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More than 160,000 people in the city are still without clean drinking water.