Nick Saban's response to a veteran asking about NFL players kneeling during national anthem
Alabama head coach Nick Saban was asked by a retired veteran about the national anthem protests during his radio show on Thursday night.
Saban noted that he’s “just a football coach” and said he doesn’t have all the answers to the problems facing society.
However, he added that he was “disappointed” by the fact that something that has always been viewed as unifying is no longer that way.
Saban emphasized he doesn’t believe that NFL players taking a knee during the anthem is meant in any way, shape or form to be a sign of disrespect to veterans.
Here’s what the Crimson Tide head coach had to say, in full, thanks to Anniston Star reporter Chandler Rome, who posted the text screenshot on Twitter:
Joe: “I’m a retired veteran. I’d like to get your take on the players of the NFL that won’t stand for our national anthem. I’d also like to know if some of your previous players from Alabama that won’t stand for the national anthem would be welcomed on your sideline. That’s my question.”
Saban: “First of all, I’m just a football coach. I don’t have all the answers to all the problems that we have in society. The one thing that’s a little disappointing to me is something that has always been really unifying, something that created spirit in our country and was very unifying is no longer that way. That’s a little bothersome to me. I don’t think that what these people are doing in any way, shape or form meant to disrespect a veteran or somebody like yourself who has worked so hard, fought so hard and sacrificed so much for all of us to have the quality of life that we want to have. But one of the things you also fought for and made sacrifice for was that we could all have the freedom to have a choice in terms of what we believe, what we do and what we said This is not something … and, look, I respect people’s individual rights. I have my opinions in terms of what I would do and how I would do it. I’m not one to ever disrespect the symbols that represent the values of our country. I also respect individual differences that other people have and they have the right to express those — whether it’s our players or somebody else, whether I agree or disagree, I do they think they have the right to do that.”
Whether you agree or disagree, there’s no doubt that everyone listens to what Nick Saban says.