Why Is Deion Sanders Called ‘Coach Prime?’ Colorado’s HC Nickname Explained

From "Prime Time" to "Coach Prime," how the most popular nickname right now in college football courtesy of NFL Hall of Famer Deion Sanders came to be.

Deion Sanders has the entire football world talking. Coming into the 2023 college football season, Sanders and the Colorado Buffalos were considered by many to be one of the primary storylines, but “Coach Prime” has generated more views, and more sports talk shows have covered Colorado than ever before.

Sanders brings a rockstar persona to the college football landscape, and football fans and the TV ratings support the notion that Sanders has changed things. The Buffaloes have become must-see TV and are drawing huge ratings, no matter the opponent or game time.

Colorado is heading into the heart of their Pac-12 schedule, and the competition will only heat up from here.

How Did Deion Sanders’ Nickname Originate?

Long story short, the name is short for his nickname, “Prime Time.”

He’s had the Prime Time moniker since high school, which he shared during an interview with The Tonight Show’s Jimmy Fallon in February 2022. The name stuck after scoring 37 points in a basketball game.

But this time, in his transition to head coach, those who play for him, or coach next to him, refer to him as “Coach Prime.” Now, he’s energizing a new age of Buffaloes football and doing it for a program that has gone from a consistent top-10 team in the late 1980s/early 1990s to a program that’s endured 15 losing seasons since 2006.

Already, Coach Prime’s style has started new trends in college football. As Sanders put it to Fox’s Erin Andrews before the TCU upset: “I don’t follow trends. I set them.”

Is ‘Coach Prime’ Already Setting a New College Football Trend?

Coach Prime made no bones about the fact that he would be using the transfer portal like never seen before. The transfer portal was a mere fascination before, now it is a galvanizing enterprise that changes the fortunes of a college football team in just one offseason.

Sanders has changed the game and the way college teams use and embrace the transfer portal. There is no going back. Teams who are highly critical of Sanders’ approach to the sport will soon turn hypocritical and similarly use the portal.

MORE: Will Deion Sanders Coach in the NFL?

Coach Prime isn’t cheating or bending the rules. He is using the transfer portal to maximum efficiency, benefiting a once-dormant program and quickly making it into a national sensation. Sanders is a trendsetter, and the rest of college football needs to catch up with Coach Prime.

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