Harper, Castellanos rock Coach Prime swag before 2-HR games

October 12th, 2023

Bryce Harper and Nick Castellanos were primed for big days.

Before Game 3 of the National League Division Series on Wednesday in Philadelphia, the two Phillies stars paid homage to a sports icon. Harper donned a T-shirt featuring “Coach Prime” -- first-year University of Colorado football coach Deion Sanders. Castellanos, meanwhile, strolled into Citizens Bank Park with a white “Coach Prime” hoodie.

They then went out and tormented the Braves -- Sanders' former team -- during the Phillies' 10-2 win with Castellanos and Harper both going deep twice, a postseason first for Harper.

"I'm a big fan of Prime and what he's doing to Colorado," Harper said after his massive performance in Game 3. "Of course I'm [an Ohio State] Buckeye fan through and through until I die, but just the way he goes about it, his interviews, his charisma, him being able to coach his kids, and he's all about family. It was crazy because I walked in, and I was sitting there and then Caste walked in, and I went, 'Oh dang, you're wearing the same Prime stuff,' and then it just kind of rolled from there."

Sanders has gained nationwide attention for his turnaround of the Buffaloes, who are 4-2 on the gridiron, with a season-opening win over 2022 national runner-up TCU so far this season. The two-sport star played 14 seasons at defensive back (and even appeared at wide receiver) in the NFL as well as playing parts of nine seasons in MLB for the Yankees, Braves, Reds and Giants.

Perhaps it’s fitting that the pair of Phillies supported Sanders on Wednesday -- 31 years to the day after he tried to pull off an incredible feat. After playing for the Atlanta Falcons on Oct. 11, 1992, in Miami, Sanders flew to Pittsburgh to join the Braves in the NL Championship Series -- but didn’t get in the game.

Harper and Castellanos, of course, have no such two-sport dreams. But while arriving for a massive game against Sanders’ former Braves squad, what better time could there be to channel one of the best pro athletes ever?