Alabama Football News

Former Alabama RB, Trent Richardson on Nick Saban being diagnosed with COVID-19: “It’s an emotional thing”

Nick Saban doing pregame walk onto the field at Bryant-Denny Stadium
Credit: Gary Cosby Jr/The Tuscaloosa News via USA TODAY Sports

He has not shown any symptoms for Coronavirus, even though he tested positive on Wednesday, but former Alabama players are coming out in support of Nick Saban.

According to Christina Chambers, a sports reporter and anchor for WBRC Fox 6 News in Birmingham, Ala., Trent Richardson was emotional in discussing the situation with Saban.

Richardson, a native of Pensacola, Fla., was a five-star in the 2009 recruiting class. He was an exceptional running back from 2009 to 2011 and played on two national championship teams.

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Richardson was a fan favorite and he set the school’s single-season rushing mark in 2011.

That year, he totaled 1,679 yards rushing with 21 touchdowns on 283 carries. He propelled the Crimson Tide to a 21-0 victory in the 2012 BCS National Championship Game versus Louisiana State University. His professional career did not turn out the way he wanted it to, but he owes a lot to Coach Saban for giving him an opportunity.

In hearing the news on Saban, Richardson said ‘it’s an emotional thing.’

“It has a big impact on you when you talk about a guy that has impacted so many lives,” he said. “Nick Saban is really these kids parents now. When I heard about it, I called right then and there to check up on him. He’s been a father figure to me. He has done so much for me and my family that I can never repay him. As I was thinking about it as a player now, even for the kids I was talking to, I was talking about how is everyone taking it. They are just in awe and they feel like we have to do this for Coach. We have to make sure we are out the way and we don’t have COVID. It’s taking more responsibility and looking at it more carefully.”

Richardson said when something hits home, it hits hard.

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Coach Saban is arguably the most powerful person in the state of Alabama, aside from Governor Kay Ivey. He has won six national championships in his career and he pushing for No. 7, which would surpass the legendary Paul W. “Bear” Bryant.

He will continue in isolation this week and hopefully remain asymptomatic. Steve Sarkisian is currently running the football program and is expected to be the head coach in Saban’s place versus Georgia, if the 68-year-old isn’t permitted to coach.

Per an update from the University of Alabama, Saban was evaluated on Thursday and still feels fine.

He wants to coach this matchup against the Bulldogs, but it is awesome to see the support Saban and his family are receiving at this time.

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Stephen M. Smith is the managing editor and senior writer for Touchdown Alabama Magazine.  You can “like” him on Facebook or “follow” him on Twitter, via @CoachingMSmith.

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