The University of Alabama has placed an assistant strength coach on administrative leave for providing improper benefits to safety HaHa Clinton-Dix, according to The Tuscaloosa News.
UA coach Nick Saban announced Clinton-Dix, one of the top pro prospects in the nation, was suspended for a team rules violation on Wednesday, and it was reported Thursday that Alabama expects him to miss 1-3 games. The university self-reported that Clinton-Dix received an impermissible benefit and proposed a 1-3 game suspension to the NCAA, per CBSSports.com.
The NCAA can accept the proposal or deny it and issue a longer suspension.
Alabama assistant strength coach Corey Harris reportedly was found by Alabama compliance officials to have a connection with a sports agent. Clinton-Dix took a loan of $100-300 from Harris, according to CBSSports.com, after Clinton-Dix's car was broken into in late June, which would be an NCAA violation and an eligibility issue. Money, an iPad, stereo sub-woofers, shirts, Nike Air Jordan shoes, a backpack and sandals -- both embroidered with Clinton-Dix's jersey number (6) -- were stolen from his 2012 Dodge Charger, according to a police report of the incident obtained by TideSports.com. Clinton-Dix, in turn, provided bank records showing a withdrawal for an amount he claimed to have repaid Harris, according to the report.
Landon Collins and Geno Smith are among the possibilities to replace Clinton-Dix in the Crimson Tide lineup Saturday, when Alabama plays host to Georgia State for Homecoming.
Clinton-Dix is already well-established as one of the nation's top safety prospects, with about a season and a half of game film available, so it's unlikely his NFL draft stock would tumble because of missed games. What's less clear is whether a lengthy suspension might influence Clinton-Dix's pending decision of whether to turn pro early or return to the Crimson Tide in 2014, assuming he is reinstated.
Clinton-Dix was a preseason All-SEC pick and a candidate for the Thorpe Award as the nation's top defensive back.