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Ronnie Harrison on Nick Saban: ‘Do you really care about the success of the kid?’

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NCAA Football: College Football Playoff National Championship-Clemson vs Alabama Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Jacksonville Jaguars strong safety Ronnie Harrison enjoyed a solid rookie year after being drafted in the third round out of the University of Alabama. He started eight games, playing off and on in six more, and showed himself to be a player who is smart as he is physical.

But before being drafted in the third round, Harrison had a decision to make — go back to Alabama for his senior season or declare for the NFL Draft.

Harrison chose the latter and it seems to have stung Alabama head coach Nick Saban, who sounded off on good players leaving early:

“Now, we have guys that have no draft grades, seventh-round grades, free-agent grades, fifth-round grades that are going out of the draft. And the person that loses in that is the player,” Saban said after Alabama’s spring game. “If you’re a third-round draft pick, and we had one here last year — I’m not going to say any names — goes and starts for his team, so he’s making third-round money, which is not that great. He’d be the first guy taken at his position this year, probably, and make $15-18 million more.”

It’s laughable that Saban would say he’s “not going to say any names” because Alabama had only one third round draft pick: Ronnie Harrison. Anyone who could Google last year’s draft results knows exactly who Saban is talking about.

Harrison knew too, responding to Saban in kind:

Good for you, Ronnie. You gave three (unpaid) years to the University of Alabama and you don’t owe them anything.