Football legend Deion Sanders has not been shy about making his real-life “War of the Roses” divorce drama public.
Now his estranged wife, Pilar Sanders, is speaking out, accusing the man who became known as “Primetime” during his college and NFL days, of using the couple’s divorce and custody battle over their three children to boost his public image.
“I just can’t believe to what extent he’s willing to go just to get attention from the media,” Pilar Sanders said today on “Good Morning America,” alongside her attorney. “He’s a legend and he’ll always be a legend in what he’s accomplished on the field, but he’s just not relevant to today’s world.
” I think he just wanted and needed the media attention for him to continue to do what he does, which is sell himself,” she said. “No real man would act in such a way.”
Pilar Sanders’ comments come after a gag order was lifted against her following an April 23 domestic dispute between the couple at the family’s $5.7 million Prosper, Texas, mansion that ended with Pilar held in jail overnight on a misdemeanor assault charge and her husband cited, also for misdemeanor assault.
After the altercation, Deion took to Twitter to allege that Pilar had attacked him and then posted a photo of the couple’s two sons, ages 12 and 10, filling out police reports. He later removed the photo from the site.
He appeared on “GMA” after the incident to explain why he posted the pictures.
“I can’t be alleged the guy that’s lost his mind,” Deion said. “That’s not who I am or what I am. I’m opening up schools. I’m doing many things for the community. I have endorsements.”
Pilar denies attacking her husband and says the Prosper police officers who responded to the couple’s home on April 23 did not tell the judge all the facts.
“None of what you heard from my estranged spouse is even true,” she said. “What unfortunately was the case was the Prosper Police Department either was in his [Deion's] pockets or something like that, but they never presented all of the facts to the judge that did give the go-ahead for me to be jailed.”
The altercation is the latest in a contentious divorce that began when Deion Sanders, 44, filed for divorce from Pilar, 38, last December after 13 years of marriage. The couple have continued to live together with their children in their sprawling mansion outside of Dallas, despite the divorce drama.
Pilar has accused Deion of cheating on her with entertainment producer Tracey Edmonds and has filed two separate lawsuits against him, one for defamation and one accusing his aunt of attacking her in their home.
On Monday Texas State District Judge Ray Wheless ordered Pilar to stay 500 yards away from the family’s home and gave Deion temporary custody of the couple’s three children, two sons and a daughter, pending a full custody hearing. The judge also ordered that the children undergo psychological counseling.
“The children are doing their best,” Pilar said. “They’re coping with, unfortunately, this horrible media blitz Deion has gone on.”
Sanders, who became an icon in the Dallas area during his five seasons as a cornerback with the Cowboys and is now an analyst for the NFL Network, took to Twitter again Monday after the judge’s ruling.
“GOD IS SO GOOD! DON’T EVER DOUBT HIM NO MATTER HOW YOUR SITUATION LOOKS. TRUST HIM PLEASE. HE IS SO FAITHFUL,” he wrote late Monday night.
“We’re dealing with a man who admittedly said he fooled the media, he concocted another character just to earn more money, well, this is the same thing,” Pilar said of her husband’s publicizing their divorce. “This is ‘Primetime’ and this is Deion Sanders that you’re seeing all-in-one.”
“That ‘Primetime’ never died off,” she said. “It’s still him and he’s still here and he’s still dancing and laughing and doing everything he did years ago in his college dorm room when he created ‘Primetime.’ He’s still at it.”
The couple will face off again May 15 in a Texas courtroom for a custody hearing regarding their three children in which Pilar plans to ask the judge for full custody from Deion, who she calls a “provider,” not a father.
“To me, a father interacts with his children on more than just one level, on more than just sports,” she said. “There was never a question of whether I had full custody anyway. Deion traveled and he worked all the time and the only interaction he ever really had with our children was during sports, practices or games, so it really was never a question who was the primary parent of our children.”