Coach Deion Sanders of the University of Colorado has been advocating for college football teams to host scrimmage contests against other programs for a few years now. This idea has been gaining more attention lately, with other coaches such as Auburn’s Hugh Freeze, UAB’s Trent Dilfer, and Alabama’s Nick Saban also expressing interest. Sanders believes that these exhibitions can be a financial windfall for universities while also helping to curtail exposure to injuries and revealing a team’s strengths and weaknesses more completely.
The Coach explained that scrimmages against other schools could allow a team to measure themselves against players who are not in their own camp. He went on to advocate for the evolution of player development, suggesting that summer passing leagues and individual drills could also benefit players. Sanders believes this will help players see where they can improve and how they compare to other players outside of their own program.
Sanders has made it clear that as his team prepares for its sold-out, ESPN-televised intrasquad scrimmage on April 22, he is looking to bolster his roster even more before kicking off the season against 2022 College Football Playoff runner-up TCU. The Coach stated that the team he has now will not be the same team that takes the field in their first game of the season. Sanders wants a lot of new faces and attitudes on the team he sends to Texas for their season opener.
Sanders continues to push for spring exhibitions while also using the NCAA Transfer Portal to his advantage. He believes that his approach will help his team compete at a high level and possibly even secure a victory in their first game of the season. It remains to be seen if other coaches will follow his lead, but for now, he seems to be ahead of the curve.