Right, for those of you not in SEC world, Alabama junior starting safety HaHa Clinton-Dix was suspended indefinitely from the Crimson Tide yesterday, for a violation of team rules.
Alabama said that it has also suspended an assistant strength coach Corey Harris, who was connected with the Clinton-Dix suspension.
So here’s what we know:
1) Clinton-Dix has been suspended indefinitely. We don’t know if that means he’s out for just Alabama’s game against Georgia State, or out for the rest of the season. Somewhere, Nick Saban’s thanking God that the Texas A&M road game wasn’t later in the season.
2) According to the Tuscaloosa News, Harris provided money to Clinton-Dix. But: “UA’s internal investigation has found no indication that Clinton-Dix has had contact with any agent or agent representative.” So the ‘scurrilous’ rumors about Clinton-Dix perhaps being involved with an agent had an element of truth to them.
3) According to the report: “Harris made a short-term loan to Clinton-Dix in an amount less than $500 at some point in the summer, an apparent violation of NCAA Bylaw 188.8.131.52, which states that “an institutional employee or representative of the institution’s athletics interests may not provide a student-athlete with extra benefits or services, including, but not limited to … a loan of money.”
4) It added: “Clinton-Dix has provided bank records to UA athletic compliance department representatives that show a withdrawal in the amount he said he repaid to Harris, The Tuscaloosa News has learned.”
5) Clinton-Dix did pay back the loan before the season started, apparently.
6) ESPN noted, quoting a source, that Clinton-Dix was expected back on the team by the end of the month.
7) Clinton-Dix’s violation is not viewed as being that serious, according to a NCAA specialist speaking to AL.com.
He told AL.com: “I think if Alabama is proactive about it and reports to the NCAA that they will suspend him for a certain period of time in advance of actually carrying out the suspension, there’s a good chance it will put them in a better position than if they simply suspended him and declared what they had done afterwards.”
“Depending on exactly what the coach’s level of involvement was with an agent and whether he had any arrangements like this with other players, it likely won’t impact Alabama as a program.”
BOTTOM LINE (1): Alabama’s secondary becomes a lot weaker without Clinton-Dix, but in the long-term, it could be a good thing for ‘Bama, as Clinton-Dix could well return. If it’s a loan and Clinton-Dix repaid the loan, then why should the NCAA get involved at all? I’m sure they will, though.
BOTTOM LINE (2): There’s a possibility – however distant – that the NCAA could get involved, ban HaHa Clinton-Dix for the season and make Alabama ineligible for the postseason. You never know with the NCAA, after all.
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