Deion Sanders strongly denounced the disturbing death threats directed at Henry Blackburn following his illegal hit on Travis Hunter, a prominent player for the Colorado State Buffaloes. It is crucial to remember that violence or harm should never be tolerated in any form, especially when it comes to sports.
“Henry Blackburn is a good player who played a phenomenal game,” Sanders said Tuesday. “He made a tremendous hit on Travis on the sideline. You could call it dirty, you could call it, ‘He was just playing the game of football.’ But whatever it was, it does not constitute that he should be receiving death threats.
“That this is still a young man trying to make it in life — a guy that’s trying to live his dream and hopefully graduate with honors or degree, committed to excellence and go to the NFL. He does not deserve a death threat over a game.”
In a regrettable incident during the game, Blackburn, a respected senior hailing from Boulder, Colorado, was penalized for a personal foul due to his late hit on Hunter. The severity of the hit necessitated Hunter’s departure from the game and subsequent visit to the hospital.
Hunter, unfortunately, had to be released from the hospital on Monday due to a lacerated liver. As a result, he will be unable to participate in the upcoming game against No. 10 Oregon this Saturday. It is anticipated that he may need several more weeks of recovery before returning to the game. Wishing him a speedy recovery!
“It’s football at the end of the day,” Hunter said Monday on his YouTube show. “That stuff happens.”
Even before No. 19 Colorado sealed its impressive 43-35 double-overtime victory on Saturday night, threats against Blackburn had already begun. According to Colorado State athletic director Joe Parker, he informed ESPN’s Pete Thamel about this concerning situation.
Both university and local authorities have conducted thorough investigations into the threats. These threats were received through multiple channels such as phone calls, text messages, and social media platforms. Rest assured that every effort has been made to address this situation seriously and ensure the safety of all individuals involved.
“At the end of the day, this is a game,” Sanders said. “Someone must win, someone must lose. Everybody continues their life the next day.
“[The death threats are] very unfortunate. I’m saddened if there’s any of our fans that’s on the other side of those threats — I would hope and pray not. But that kid was just playing the best of his ability and he made a mistake. I forgive him. CU, our team forgives him. Travis, he’s forgiven him. Let’s move on. But that kid does not deserve that.”
Before ending his weekly news conference, Sanders asked for prayers for Blackburn, adding that it’s “absurd for people to be threatening him.”
“I don’t mind getting death threats,” Sanders said. “I get them every week — but a kid, it’s not good.”