University of Alabama

Alabama football notes: Luther Davis sticks up for teammate Marcell Dareus amid NCAA investigation

Dareus still can practice during probe



TUSCALOOSA, Ala. — Alabama defensive end Marcell Dareus hasn’t talked much about his eligibility issue, and fellow defensive end Luther Davis isn’t asking.

As the program waits to hear from the NCAA about Dareus’ status, Davis said his younger teammate is handling the controversy well.

“He’s not any different,” Davis said. “He’s still playing around, watching cartoons and still hanging out. He’s just such a laid-back, lovable person. He’s a great guy.

“A lot of people try to make him out to be something he’s not. I know in my heart what kind of person he is, and everyone on the team knows what kind of person he is.”

Coach Nick Saban said Wednesday that the school is waiting for a ruling from the NCAA after an investigation into potentially improper dealings between Dareus and a sports agent. Dareus practiced Thursday with the first-team defensive line. His eligibility status with the NCAA has no bearing on his practice availability.

Searing heat

Being August in the South, the searing heat was no surprise. but it certainly was a factor in Thursday’s practice, as it is to be expected.

The temperatures were already close to 90 degrees when the practice for returning players began at 9:30 a.m.

By the evening session for newcomers, the temperature dropped from the mid-90s to a more comfortable 81 degrees without bright sun and a heat index.

The two cooling tents, complete with misters, were back again this season to aid players who were drenched in sweat just minutes into the morning practice.