Deion Sanders tells '60 Minutes' that he's the best coach in college football

So far, his claim is backed up by his team's performance and the buzz he's generating off the field.

Colorado University football head coach Deion Sanders declared himself the best coach in college football — and backed up the claim — on 60 Minutes. (CBS)
University of Colorado football head coach Deion Sanders declared himself the best coach in college football — and backed up the claim — on 60 Minutes. (CBS)

The head coach of the University of Colorado football team and one of the buzziest figures currently in sports, Deion Sanders, sat down with 60 Minutes Sunday to talk about his effect on the college game and why he is the best coach in the country.

After a successful college career playing football and baseball at Florida State University, playing professionally in both the NFL and the MLB, and then building a successful broadcasting career, Sanders became the head coach of Jackson State University’s football program in 2020 and quickly turned it around.

After three seasons there he moved on to Colorado, what’s known as a “Power 5” school in a major conference, that was coming off a 1-11 season in football. In Sanders’ first three games, the Buffaloes opened the season as 21-point underdogs on the road at TCU — who played in last year’s National Championship game — and walked out with a 45-42 win, and they have since won home games against Nebraska and Colorado State.

Sanders' success away from the field has already been measured as well, in the fact that merchandise sales for the program are up 819% from last season, the team’s Instagram followers have increased 10 times what they were and season tickets have sold out for this year.

For the 56th season premiere of 60 Minutes, Sanders spoke with Jon Wertheim for what happened to be the second time in two years.

“I truly make a difference. I make folks nervous, man. I get folks moving in their seat. I get folks twiddling their thumbs. I get them thinking and second-guessing themselves,” Sanders said about being an agent of change. “Have you ever been so clean that you walked in and somebody looked down at you and looked at themselves and had to check themselves because you were so clean? I have that effect.”

Sanders immediately made waves when he arrived in Boulder by encouraging many of the current players to enter the transfer portal — what college athletes use to switch schools — and over 50 of them ultimately left. That made room for players like two of Sanders’ sons, Shedeur and Shilo Sanders, to join the team among others from Jackson State and elsewhere.

“If you were able to let words run you off, you ain’t for us. Because we’re an old-school coaching staff, we coach hard, we coach tough, we’re disciplinarians,” Sanders said of his approach, and later added, “I think truth is good for kids. We’re so busy lying, we don’t even recognize the truth no more in society. We want everybody to feel good, that’s not the way life is.”

Sanders also said that any criticism he has gotten from other coaches — both publicly and privately — about how he does things is “fear” that the “little engine that could” will go from saying “I think I can” to “I did that.” So far his success already represents the latter.

And speaking of coaches, Wertheim asked who Sanders thinks is the best coach in college football today.

“Let me see a mirror, so I can look at him,” Sanders said. “You think I’m gonna sit up here and tell you somebody else? You think that’s the way I operate, that somebody else has got that on me?”

But the man known as Coach Prime did actually have some strong words to say about someone besides himself in the industry, and that’s the University of Alabama head coach, Nick Saban.

“I love and I adore and respect… every time I do a commercial with coach Saban it’s a gift. Just sitting in his presence and hearing him and throwing something else out there so I could hear his viewpoint on it, because he’s forgotten more things than I may ever accomplish,” Sanders said of the seven-time national champion. “So I’m a student, looking up to this wonderful teacher saying, ‘just throw me a crumb of what you know.’”

60 Minutes airs Sundays on CBS, check local listings.