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Deion Sanders Jr. commits to play receiver at SMU

By Matt Hinton | Blogger

College coaches have been waiting 20 years for "the next Deion Sanders," and SMU finally has him: On Tuesday, the Mustangs received a commitment from Deion Sanders Jr., son of the former Florida State All-American and NFL Hall of Famer turned broadcaster and businessman. Deion Jr. confirmed the commitment on his Twitter feed.

To be fair, he's not projected as the second coming of his feted father on the field. The younger Sanders is regarded as a two-star or three-star recruit, depending on which service you consult, with reported interest from Houston (which offered him a scholarship), South Florida and Rutgers, among others. At Flower Mound High in Marcus, Texas, north of Dallas, he played on both sides of the ball as an option quarterback, receiver and cornerback; at 5-foot-7, 170 pounds, he will likely play as a slot receiver at SMU, whose leading receiver the past two years, Darius Johnson, is listed at just 5-10, 175.

The Mustangs also offer a family connection: Head coach June Jones was offensive coordinator with the Atlanta Falcons when the elder Sanders played in Atlanta in the early nineties. The Mustangs' wide receivers coach, Jason Phillips, also recruited Sanders Jr. when he was on staff at Houston.

In January, Sanders Jr. was one of 13 prospects who also happen to be relatives of ex-athletes selected to play in the Under Armour All-America Game, including Ken Griffey Jr.'s son, Trey, who is now a freshman wide recover at Arizona. In February, a dozen sons of former NFL players signed letters of intent to FBS schools, headlined running back Barry Sanders, Jr's signature with Stanford.

Although he graduated from high school on time in the spring, Deion Sanders Jr. is coming to SMU from a prep school, the Atlanta Sports Academy, where he enrolled in hopes of getting offers from more high profile schools without burning any of his NCAA eligibility. In high school, he transferred twice before settling in his third school, Flower Mound Marcus. Meanwhile, he also played a prominent role in a reality show on the Oxygen Network, "Deion and Pilar: Prime Time Love," and took a stab at "clothing line" that he dubbed Well Off Apparel. He's expected to enroll at SMU in January.

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Photo via US Presswire.

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