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Pettway is back with Alabama, signs with Tide after one-year hiatus

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D.J. Pettway was arrested on charges of second-degree robbery in February, and he was promptly dismissed from Alabama’s football program. But now he’s back after a 10-month hiatus.

Related: Top 4-star decommitted from Alabama

The defensive end went the junior college route and played this fall for East Mississippi Community College. He got back in the Alabama staff’s good graces and he proudly signed a letter of intent with the ‘Tide on Wednesday–the first day junior college transfers could ink with their respective schools. Pettway was an freshman All-SEC team member for the Tide in 2012, so he’s a huge player to get back. He played in 12 games, and had sacks against Michigan, Arkansas and in the national championship game last year.

Pettway, who wore No. 57 at Alabama in 2012, had this to say on Twitter.

“57 back, signed with Bama again today. nothing but God,” Pettway Tweeted Wednesday. He also posted this last week on Facebook: “Blessed would be an understatement, thank ya lord for delivering me and being my rock and foundation when nobody else was there for these tough ten months.”

In the altercation, Pettway was accused of attacking another student along with former Alabama teammates Eddie Williams and Tyler Hayes, who were also dismissed from the program. Pettway left and went on to record 47 tackles and 11.5 sacks this fall at EMCC–which recently won the junior college national championship. In March, after Pettway wrote a long letter emphasizing his regret for what he’d done, a judge granted Pettway permission to attend junior college, and he received youthful offender status.

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Comments 26

  1. How many Fulmer Cup points is this worth?? What a joke…..

  2. Let this be a lesson children: If you’re an elite athlete and want to commit a violent, cowardly crime, do it early in your college career, so you have time to (cough) apologize (cough) and return to the team you were kicked off of, in order to help that team win another championship.

    • Every hear of Cam Newton or Nick Marshall just to name a couple! I think the message was sent along time ago that if you can play ball that character doesn’t matter!

      • iamme
        Commented : 4 months ago

        Amen Strickbama! They forget about all that when it comes to Bama though.

      • Though Cam and Nick are thieves, and I despise thieves, what they did is NOTHING compared to ganging up someone 3-to-1, beating that person, and robbing him. Do not try to reconcile the two.

        • Its funny that you’re ready to condemn a kid that you’re not even sure what part he played in the crime if any! You don’t know if he was just there with his boys and they did this or if he participated. Personally I question the decision to allow any of them the privilege of playing football but I won’t condemn one of them over the others especially when I don’t know the facts of the one I’m condemning!

        • “According to arrest warrants and depositions filed by University of Alabama police officers, Pettway, Williams and Hayes admitted involvement in separate attacks on two students that left the victims unconscious in the early hours of Feb. 11.”
          You’re right, I don’t know exactly what he did, but his involvement is unquestioned. Come back to reality; Lord Saban allowed a monumental POS back on the team.

    • Let’s see, 1st there was Scam, I mean CAM NEWTON. Of course that never really got resolved. After all, Auburn wouldn’t have made it to the NC & won that year without him. (Notice how they completely flopped once Scam, I mean, Cam left to head off to the NFL.

      NOW, once again, here is Auburn with the “star QB” Nick Marshall, who has the tag of being dismissed from the team in Georgia & also dismissed from the school. And you want to talk about lessons for kids? And we will never forget the “Heisman Trophy” winner for 2013. The star rapist for FSU. Gotta keep those championship hopefuls alive & well for the alumni & the deep pockets that support them.

      • Well we know that Cam Newton stole a computer and stole a paper with threats to the owner with physical harm …He left Florida with 16 traffic violations and a criminal record that was given youthful offender status and removed from his record…. They made a new r rule so that no one else can ever pull the trick he and his dad pulled on Miss ST. and Auburn… now that is class right there….lol

  3. How many other schools do this as well? Y’all act like Alabama is the ONLY program that allows problem players back. At least the guy didn’t give up and worked his way back. Most kids would have just went home and probably got in more trouble. People deserve a second chance. Now if he screws up again, that’s it.

    • “Problem player”? Tyrann Mathieu was a problem player. Violently robbing someone with two of your football teammates makes you a lowlife POS that deserves 5 years in prison, not a problem player who deserves a second chance to play for the team that kicked you off less than a year before. You Bammers somehow never cease to amaze me.

    • No one is saying Bama is the only school with bad apples. But when you’ve won 3 out of 4 BCS Champs you get an extra dose of scrutiny. I’m all for 2nd chances and this kid got one. The chance to get a scholarship to play football in exchange for an education…..but not back at the very same school he as at before which HAPPENS to be Bama….the very team he was kicked off. Plenty of Div 1AA or lower level schools would love to have him. Jenoris Jenkins paid his dues after being kicked off Florida for MJ. He went to a lower level school and is now starting for the STL Rams. If Pettway is good enough it won’t matter where he plays out his college ball.

  4. A LOT of kids who have these scholarships and opportunities screw up. If they learn their lesson then i don’t see a problem. A LOT of teams just suspend for a quarter or game and forget it OR ignore it completely. But i guess Alabama should never do wrong in everyone else’s eyes. Just a chance to hate

    • Just goes to prove how JEALOUS & PETTY the losers are. Auburn’s “winning year” (notice singular not plural) with Scam, I mean Cam Newton. Now their current “winning year” their “star QB” has a dark cloud hanging over him as well. Did he even go to jail for the crime he commit at Georgia? Apparently not, he was booted out of one school & there is the good ole Auburn staff ready to scoop him up & host him upon their shoulders.

      • I really don’t understand how you can so bitter and hateful toward other schools for playing someone who has received a second chance. No one barely knew who Cam was when he got to AU. Until he started destroying defenses. Cam did something stupid at Florida and got caught. I know Bama can’t get over how he wrecked them but its in the past. Same with Marshall, you could have cared less about him until he did some work on that defense. He also did something stupid, he went to JuCo and mellowed out.

        There is a human trait called remorse, most people find it out the hard way. Now you have your own dark cloud that you kicked out and took back in and he did something much much worse than petty theft. Hopefully he sent the letter of apology to Bama out of remorse, and if it was out of remorse then he does deserve a second chance.

        Congratulations, now lose your hateful high and mighty attitude — You are no longer on the pedestal you once were.

        • 3 out of the last four NC’s and we are not on a pedestal just because Auburn lucks out 3 games with miracles…. Next year reality will set in .. trust me …

  5. mlou
    Commented : 4 months ago

    People make mistakes. Yes, what he did was horrible, but give the kid a chance. I am sure all of you have done things that you aren’t proud of. Let you who have never done anything wrong throw the first stone.


      Eddie Williams, Tyler Hayes and D.J. Pettway were charged with second-degree robbery and Brent Calloway and Williams were charged with fraudulent use of a credit/debit card, according to the Tuscaloosa County Sheriff’s Office.

      All four players were released from jail early Tuesday morning. Word came Tuesday afternoon that each of the players was suspended from the team as the school investigates the matter.

      All four players were released from jail early Tuesday morning. Word came Tuesday afternoon that each of the players was suspended from the team as the school investigates the matter.

      “The young men charged are indefinitely suspended as we continue to gather information and talk to the appropriate people,” Alabama coach Nick Saban said in a statement. “The University and football program have strict guidelines regarding issues of this magnitude. This behavior is unacceptable for any student-athlete at the University of Alabama and not representative of our football program.”

      It apparently was the second arrest in two days for Williams, who was charged with carrying a pistol without a license on Sunday.

      According to arrest warrants obtained by, Pettway, Williams and Hayes physically attacked a student, punching and kicking him.

      UGA HC Mark Richt suspended a player for an unpaid parking ticket. You think he lets one of these scumbags BACK on the team? No way…..

  6. Saban is the kind of Coach that will give players a second chance if he feels like they can be salvaged. That being said Saban will permanently kick his arse off the team in a heartbeat if he screws up again…he doesn’t abide troublemakers on his teams and that should be obvious. Say what you will the man runs a tight ship.

    • Agreed James. It is amazing how quickly some fans (especially those from competing teams) are willing to throw away the life of a kid because they make a mistake. So many of the athletes in college football and other sports come from backgrounds most of us can’t imagine. Often they live in an environment where only the strong survive. Single parent families, being raised by relatives, living in gang infested neighborhoods where you hear gunshots virtually every night and plenty of bullying are apart of many of the players daily lives. Sports is often the only escape some of these kids see. I don’t think Nick Saban or a judge would grant Pettway the ability to come back and finish school, get a degree and play college football if they did not see mitigating factors that tell them this kid learned from his mistake. The police report from the incident says Pettway was not directly involved in the robbery but was waiting in the backseat of a car. There was even some question if he even knew what was going down. I’m far from some liberal softy on crime but I am a father and I have worked with kids. Our goal as a society should be to work to help them succeed in life, not throw them away and forget them because they made one mistake. Take off your school colors for a moment and think not as a fan but as a parent. Forgiveness is not a weakness, it is a strength. The same type second chance has been granted to plenty of other non-athlete kids and many have made the most of it and turned their lives around. Maybe you haven’t been involved in a crime but I am sure you have had to be forgiven many times in your life as all of us have. After-all each of us has sinned and fallen short of the glory of God.

  7. All I can say — and I have no dogs in this fight — you guys are awesome fans.

  8. All Sports Man said it all – people need to stop judging and hating others most of them hating just because their from another fan base. All I can say is we don’t know all the facts of his complete involvement in the crime. Everybody sins and falls short of the glory of god and don’t hate someone because they sin differently than you do because in gods eyes sin is sin and it’s all bad. Judging someone is a sin also so I say Saban did the right thing and gave the kid a second chance and if he blows his second and last chance with Saban he’s done and I’m sure Saban made that clear with him, so stop hating and judging others and pull for your team and let others pull for theirs none of us are perfect. At the end of the day when you say your prayers and ask god for forgiveness think about what I just said we all sin so stop judging others… Now I say – Roll Tide Roll & Best of Luck To Pettway !!!!