Barry Sanders stops in Mid-Michigan

2011 marks the first year that Barry Sanders has participated in the Jason Richardson Golf Classic in Frankenmuth. Sanders and Richardson are friends. The NFL great took time to meet and greet fans and fellow golfers. / Dan Williamson

NFL defenses know firsthand how hard it is to stop Barry Sanders. So, when the NFL legend decided to stop in Frankenmuth at the Fortress Golf Course for the 8th Annual Jason Richardson Golf Classic, he made it easy for NBC25 to catch up to him. All proceeds from Richardson's golf classic will benefit the United Way of Saginaw County.

It is the first time Sanders has participated and when asked why he chose to, Sander's said: "I know Jason (Richardson) through a close mutual friend and he has invited me down the last couple of years and probably more than that and this year, I was able to make it down and that is what I am doing here."

"Being able to bring the community together and put on an event like this, it raises money for a much needed charity and Jason is from this area and cares very much about this area and the people here."

Any interview with Barry Sanders has to include football. The NFL is still locked out and Sanders says: "We are starting to see some movement and both sides were dug in pretty good for a while and I think this time of year, they are going to be a little more motivated to get something done."

As for the team that he played all 10 seasons of his NFL career, the Detroit Lions? Sanders says he has high hopes for them.

"I think they have a lot to be excited about. I think they showed great strides last year and there is no reason why that can't be right there in the thick of things in their division. Obviously, they have the Super Bowl Champions (Green Bay) in their division and a great (Chicago) Bears team, but I think talent wise, we have to feel very good about where we are."

Sanders won the Heisman Trophy in 1988 while attending Oklahoma State. He was elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2004.

You can view the entire interview at the link above.

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