Earlier this week, the decision by Deion Sanders to walk out of SWAC Media Day after a reporter referred to him by his first name made major waves.
Sanders, who seems to favor “Coach Prime,” claimed that Alabama coach Nick Saban does not like being referred to by his first name, and that he should be treated the same as Saban.
Suss: “Hey Deion, was just wondering if you could—”
Sanders: “Hold on, let’s back up a little bit. You don’t call Nick Saban ‘Nick.’ Don’t call me Deion.”
Suss: “I call Nick Saban ‘Nick.'”
Sanders: “No you don’t, that’s a lie. If you call Nick ‘Nick,’ you know you’ll get cussed out on the spot, so don’t do that to me. Treat me like Nick.”
Suss: “OK, Deion.”
Sanders: “Alright. (walks out)”
Deion was proven wrong just the very next day as Alabama Crimson Tide head coach Nick Saban was called by his first name several times and he never got upset about it.
Mike Bianchi of The Orlando Sentinel said he would refer to Saban as ‘Coach’ instead of ‘Nick’ as he tried to make a play on what happened with Deion Sanders. His joke fell flat as nobody even chuckled.
Fast forward to 23:12:
Later on in the press conference, Saban was asked more directly about how he’d like to be addressed.
“Look, I respond to just about anything — and I’ve been called just about everything,”Saban said. “Not something that’s really important to me, but I think everyone should have the opportunity to sort of create or make their expectation of how they get addressed.”