Jerry Rice

Sanders, Rice face off in Colorado-USC decades after fathers' last NFL matchup

NBC Universal, Inc.

Plenty of eyes will be on Saturday's matchup between Colorado and USC, but NFL fans watching the college football game will get a heavy dose of nostalgia.

Colorado coach Deion Sanders and 49ers legend Jerry Rice last squared off in the NFL about 25 years ago, and their sons will do the same in Boulder, Colo., as the Buffs take on the Trojans.

Sanders has two sons playing for him: quarterback Shedeur and defensive back Shilo. Both sons have taken the collegiate football scene by storm this season, following in their father's footsteps as stars in the sport.

And so has Brenden Rice, who plays wide receiver like his father and played a part in USC quarterback Caleb Williams winning the 2022 Heisman Trophy.

Shilo and Brenden should make for quite the matchup Saturday -- again, similar to their dads. Jerry and Deion often found themselves opposite each other in key NFL moments during the 90s, Jerry with San Francisco and Deion with both the Atlanta Falcons and Dallas Cowboys. The rivals also played together on the 49ers in 1994.

The two NFL stars faced each other 10 times and each went 5-5 during those matchups, though only three of those were truly head-to-head clashes. The last meeting came on Nov. 10, 1996, when the Cowboys beat the 49ers 20-17. Jerry finished the game with five catches for 49 yards, while Deion had one tackle and two pass breakups.

Their final head-to-head matchup came in 1995 and saw Rice pick up 161 yards and a touchdown on five receptions while Sanders failed to do much. (h/t The Sports Rush).

Now, nearly 25 years to the day, perhaps their sons will start a rivalry of their own.

Download and follow the 49ers Talk Podcast

Contact Us