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Deion Sanders does not seem overly concerned about Michigan’s sign-stealing scandal.
The Colorado head coach downplayed how much stealing signs helps opposing teams during his meeting with reporters Tuesday.
“I don’t know how accurate that stuff is,” Sanders said. “I mean, everybody’s trying to get an edge. Everyone’s trying to get an edge wherever they can. You can have someone’s whole gameplan. They could mail it to you. You’ve still got to stop it.”
Suspended Michigan staff member Connor Stalions has been at the center of the Wolverines’ sign-stealing scandal. Pete Thamel and Mark Schlabach of ESPN reported Stalions bought tickets to 30 games featuring 11 Big Ten opponents over the past three seasons.
The assistant coach is accused of using those seats to have people illegally record hand signals, a violation of NCAA rules. Stalions is currently suspended with pay while the NCAA investigates.
“The Big Ten conference considers the integrity of competition to be of the utmost importance. Due to the ongoing nature of the NCAA investigation, the conference has no comment at this time,” the Big Ten said in a statement.
The seat purchases coincide with Michigan’s re-emergence as a national power. After a dreadful 2-4 campaign in 2020 put Harbaugh arguably on the hot seat, Michigan has compiled a 33-3 record over the last three seasons. The Wolverines made the College Football Playoff in 2021 and 2022 and are again favored to be among the final four teams remaining this season.
In-game sign stealing is not prohibited. However, the use of recordings of opposing teams and in-person advance scouting are violations of NCAA rules.
Michigan said it plans to fully cooperate with the NCAA investigation. Harbaugh already served a three-game suspension this season for violating COVID-19 practicing policies.
If he’s found out to have orchestrated the scouting scheme or to have known about it, it’s possible he will face dismissal.