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June 24, 2008

Hall breaks silence

The last time Prince Hall spoke to the media was near the end of Alabama's 2007 football season, a six-month stretch of silence due in part to his indefinite suspension from the team.

For the first time publicly, the Moreno Valley, Calif., native has gone on record about his suspension and standing with the team in an interview with his local newspaper, the Press-Enterprise of Riverside, Calif.

"I'm still waiting to hear," Hall told the newspaper. "I'm going to school and working out. … I have to keep in school, keep working out and keep my health up."

With the breaking news that another UA linebacker, Jimmy Johns, has been arrested on drug charges, Hall's return to the squad becomes all the more critical. UA coach Nick Saban dismissed Johns Tuesday.

Due to a violation of team rules, Hall did not participate in spring drills and thus was not available for comment. Crimson Tide coach Nick Saban noted recently that Hall still had the opportunity to work his way back onto the team. Hall was named Freshman All-SEC in 2006 with 77 tackles under former coach Mike Shula. But he was suspended for the season opener against Western Carolina last season, and was relegated to a part-time role upon his return. Hall finished last year with five starts, 58 tackles and an interception.

Saban has said Hall's return to the team may also include a suspension at the beginning of the season, which Hall said might be one or two games.

If Saban does not reinstate Hall, he said he might consider a transfer to a I-AA school, which would allow him to play without sitting out a season under NCAA transfer rules. For now, however, the goal is a return to the UA squad. Hall, for his part, remains in school and on scholarship, is working out with the team, and working his way toward reinstatement.

Players report for fall camp on July 31.

"When he went there, he wanted to fit in and that's gotten him into a little trouble. He just didn't make good decisions for himself. His big thing now is to finish out what he started," his mother, LaQuida Hall told the Press-Enterprise. "… We've gone down several times and met with Coach Saban. I think the thing that most disappointed him was that he expected, and still expects, Prince to be a leader."



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