It’s time to bury the hatchet.
Or in this case, the scooter.
After a week where the storyline leading up to the most anticipated regular-season game of the SWAC calendar to date was dominated by scooters banter, there was a much different tone several days removed from what was a lopsided 61-15 Jackson State triumph over defending SWAC East champion Alabama A&M.
“I always enjoy it. That’s me, that’s who I am,” said Bulldogs coach Connell Maynor on Monday in reference to all the media attention the game received on the strength of a joke made about Maynor wanting a custom scooter like one fashioned by Tigers’ coach Deion Sanders.
“Some people (might) take it the wrong way, I can’t help it, but I’m not going to stop being who I am because the other person don’t receive it the same way.”
Sanders — the other person in this case — was under the impression that comments made by Maynor were personal and disrespectful in nature.
After Jackson State’s victory, the second-year head coach signed a small pink scooter affixed with a JSU logo sticker in response to Maynor’s request.
“I apologize for giving him what he asked for!!! I’m from FLORIDA y’all know how we get down,” Sanders later tweeted.
Shedeur Sanders, Deion Sanders’ son and starting quarterback was also riled by the banter and suggested the team’s performance was inspired because of the perceived trash talk.
Also read: ‘I didn’t talk about the man’: Connell Maynor wants critics not to read too much into question to Deion Sanders
“When you disrespect Pops, what do you think is gonna happen?” Shedeur said, who threw four touchdowns and ran for another against the Bulldogs about the 49-point differential between the teams. “How do you expect me to perform?”
Deion Sanders said during SWAC media availability that he’s never discussed another opponent prior to a game in his playing or coaching career nor has been “disrespectful to another man in my life on a football field.”
“That’s not my character,” he said. “I’ve never done it.”
In any event, Maynor, who characterized himself as an “unemployed comedian” with a fun-loving reputation, said there is no animosity between him and Sanders after a whirlwind week.
“I think it’s great for the game,” he said. “It’s not anything personal. Other coaches in the SWAC have great relationships to where we can say stuff and understand that it’s all in the fun of the game.
“…His (Sanders) quote was I was talking about him. I wasn’t talking about him at all. I was just asking a question. That’s over with. We’re looking forward to Florida A&M.”