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February 27, 2013

Four arrested UA players off team

TUSCALOOSA | The four University of Alabama football players arrested for legal charges ranging from second-degree robbery to fraudulent use of a credit card are no longer part of the football program, UA coach Nick Saban said Wednesday. Defensive back Eddie Williams, defensive lineman D.J. Pettway, linebacker Tyler Hayes and tight end Brent Calloway were initially suspended from the team indefinitely by Saban.

"Some people learn by words, some people learn by consequences, some people can't learn," Saban said.

Williams is accused of robbing two UA students during the early morning hours of Feb. 11, taking a laptop and a wallet. Pettway and Hayes are accused of participating in one of the robberies and being present during the other. Williams and Calloway are also accused of using a credit card stolen in one robbery.
The administration suspended all but Calloway and banned them from campus immediately after the arrests.

"(Their) actions do not reflect the spirit and character that we want our organization to reflect. Obviously it's very disappointing and unacceptable, what happened," Saban said. "I also think that I've been really proud, over the last five years, that our team has done a very good job with personal responsibility in how they represent the university and what they've done in the community, in the classroom, on the field. We're going to continue to do as much as can in personal development, character development, in our program, with education, to try to help guys be more successful in life."

Attorneys for all but Hayes have asked a judge to grant youthful offender status, which would limit the possible length of punishment and probation and greatly restrict case information available to the public. A joint preliminary hearing in the criminal cases against all but Hayes has been scheduled for March 19. Defendants usually choose to waive a hearing if they are out on bond and if prosecutors have already shared discovery evidence, such as police reports and other investigative documents.

Said UA associate vice president of university relations Deborah Lane: "UA's judicial review has been completed. The four students involved in the robberies on campus are no longer enrolled in UA."

Spring practice notes
Wide receivers Marvin Shinn and Danny Woodson will not participate in spring practice, while the spring statuses of receiver Kevin Norwood and cornerback John Fulton are questionable, Saban said.

Woodson has been suspended for a violation of team rules, while Shinn has not been involved in offseason workouts.

"Marvin Shinn has elected not to go through the offseason program, therefore he will not be going through spring practice or (be) part of the team. I'm assuming that he's going to decide to go some place else," Saban said.

Fulton and Norwood, meanwhile, are dealing with turf toe injuries that could prevent them from spring participation. Fulton had surgery for his turf toe, which hampered him late in the season last year. Neither has been part of the team's offseason workout program.

Reach Chase Goodbread at chase@tidesports.com or at 205-722-0196.

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