HOOVER, ALABAMA — Alabama coach Nick Saban questioned the motives of the Monroe Police Department and accused police officers who arrested two Tide football players in May of being LSU fans.
Media personality Paul Finebaum confirmed that Saban, during an off-the-air exchange Wednesday, "indicated" the officers who arrested left tackle Cam Robinson and defensive back Hootie Jones were LSU fans.
AL.com shot video of the somewhat heated conversation between the radio and television star and the 10th-year Alabama coach on Day 3 of SEC media days in this Birmingham suburb.
"He indicated that the police were LSU fans, yeah," Finebaum told The Advocate. "I think that’s accurate."
On air, Finebaum grilled Saban on the arrest of Robinson and Jones, Louisiana natives, before the two became embroiled in an off-air conversation on the stage of SEC Network’s set. The stage is located toward the rear of the primary media room in the Wynfrey Hotel.
"There were four people in the car. Why did the two football players get arrested and the other guys did not get arrested?" Saban said to Finebaum on air. "There’s no law about concealed weapons in Louisiana. Is that right, Marcus (Spears). You’re from Louisiana? All right. So why did they search the car just because there was a gun on the seat?"
Saban's rant then unfolded during a commercial break in SEC Network’s live coverage. It came about an hour after he told media members that Robinson and Jones would not face suspensions if they fulfilled internal punishment obligations.
Robinson, one of the top left tackles in the nation, and Jones, a reserve defensive back, were arrested May 17 in Monroe when police spotted their car parked in a closed public park. Both were charged with possession of marijuana. Robinson was charged with possession of a stolen gun, a felony.
District attorney Jerry Jones decided against prosecuting the players, dropping the charges. His reasoning for the move drew criticism nationally.
"I want to emphasize once again that the main reason I'm doing this is that I refuse to ruin the lives of two young men who have spent their adolescence and their teenage years, working and sweating, while we were all home in the air conditioning," Jones told KNOE-TV.
Alabama opens the season with Southern Cal in a highly anticipated matchup at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas.
MONROE — The district attorney's office has decided not to prosecute Alabama offensive linem…
"Cam Robinson and Hootie were not charged with anything," Saban said. "I think the facts we have are a little different than sort of what was advertised. Both players have done a significant amount of things to change their behavior internally, whether it was police ride-around, whether it was community service or juvenile groups that need positive role models and influence to make better choices and decisions."