Alabama coach Nick Saban has suspended star safety Ha Ha Clinton-Dix indefinitely for violating unspecified team rules.
Saban announced the suspension of one of the top-ranked Crimson Tide’s top defensive players after Wednesday’s practice. Saban wouldn’t say what Clinton-Dix did wrong.
“I want to be consistent,” he said. “When guys get suspended, I never, ever say what it’s for. So I’m not going there. So don’t ask me. It’s the way it always happens. Every guy. If they do right, they wouldn’t be getting suspended. I don’t know for how long this will be, so don’t ask me that either. “
Clinton-Dix is second on the team with 24 tackles and is a projected first-round NFL draft pick. He upended Mississippi wide receiver Laquon Treadwell on a fourth-down stop early in last Saturday’s 25-0 victory.
His backup, Nick Perry, has been lost for the season after shoulder surgery. Saban said sophomores Geno Smith and Landon Collins are working at Clinton-Dix’s spot leading up to Saturday’s game with winless Georgia State.
“Landon Collins really doesn’t play the same position,” the coach said. “We’ve been working him at that position. Nick Perry was really Ha Ha’s backup. Nick Perry’s out, he had shoulder surgery. So he would have obviously been a guy who had experience, who played a lot in games before, who would have played there. But we’ve been working Landon and Geno Smith, primarily. We moved Geno to safety way back in fall camp. So those are the two guys that will primarily play that position in this game.”
Clinton-Dix is Alabama’s fourth announced suspension since the start of preseason camp, joining linebacker Trey DePriest, Smith and tight end Malcolm Faciane.
“He’s a great player and obviously he will be missed, but I’m confident in the guys we have behind him and the guys in the secondary to make adjustments,” Tide defensive end Jeoffrey Pagan said. “I think we’ll be all right.”
Steelers acquire tackle Brown from Cardinals
PITTSBURGH — Levi Brown failed to live up to his pedigree with the Arizona Cardinals. The winless Pittsburgh Steelers are hoping a change of scenery might help Brown turn his career — and Pittsburgh’s sagging season — around.
Both teams announced Wednesday that the Steelers have acquired Brown for a conditional draft pick.
The 29-year-old Brown never appeared comfortable in Arizona after the Cardinals selected him with the fifth overall pick in the 2007 draft, two spots ahead of Adrian Peterson.
As a rookie, he started at right tackle for Arizona’s 2008 Super Bowl team, then was moved to left tackle. But he never became the dominant blocker the Cardinals envisioned.
After missing all of 2012 with a torn triceps, Brown was labeled an “elite” tackle by new coach Bruce Arians in the offseason. But Arians quickly lost faith in Brown as the big lineman struggled against the pass rush off the edge. He gave up three sacks to Robert Quinn in Arizona’s season opener at St. Louis.
“I don’t think it comes as any surprise that Levi Brown was not living up to our expectations,” Cardinals general manager Steve Keim said.
Brown will be replaced by Bradley Sowell, claimed off waivers from the Indianapolis Colts on Sept. 1. Sowell played in 10 games for Indianapolis as an undrafted rookie last season.
, when Arians was offensive coordinator, then interim head coach.
Arians said he expected “no drop-off at all” at the position.