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Published: Wednesday, January 03, 2018 @ 11:15 AM
— Nick Saban started slowly and then picked up steam in his comments about Kirby Smart during the national championship teleconference on Tuesday.
At first, when he was asked why he initially hired Smart as an assistant coach, he said it was because, “He was a secondary guy and we needed a secondary guy.”
But eventually he got around to praising his longtime assistant, and when he did, it was profuse.
“I was very impressed with him from day one,” Saban said on a teleconference call on Tuesday. “He’s very bright and he learned quickly. I would hire him anytime, anywhere on any staff based on his body of work he did. The nine or 10 years he was with us, he did a fantastic job.”
Now Saban will have to match wits with Smart as the mentor and protege face off in the College Football Playoff championship game Monday night at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta. Saban’s No. 4-seeded Crimson Tide defeated No. 1 Clemson 24-6 on New Year’s Day in the Sugar Bowl. Smart’s No. 3 Georgia Bulldogs beat No. 2 Oklahoma 54-48 in double-overtime in the Rose Bowl.
Saban was asked if he had anticipated Smart might have such a level of success so quickly at Georgia.
“Well, Georgia had a pretty good nucleus of players there; I think they had won 10 games the year he took over,” Saban said. “Now he has done a fantastic job of bringing those players along, getting those players to play with discipline and play together. They play hard, very relentless. I think this last game was sort of a reflection on the attitude he’s been able to instill to overcome adversity.”
The Bulldogs came from behind twice in the game before finally forcing overtime. In the second overtime period, Georgia got a blocked field goal from Lorenzo Carter to set up a game-winning touchdown run by senior Sonny Michel.
“To come back in a game like they did against Oklahoma, they’re playing extremely well,” Saban said. “I think that is a reflection on [Smart’s] ability and his leadership to get everybody to buy in to do things the way he wanted them to. They certainly are playing on a high level.”
Saban said he hired Smart when he did on the recommendation of assistants Derek Dooley and Will Muschamp. Smart started as defensive backs coach but quickly moved up to defensive coordinator and assistant head coach.
Saban said he remains very fond of Smart and has stayed good friends with Smart and his wife, Mary Beth. Saban and Smart spent nine years with them in Tuscaloosa.
That said, he still wants to badly beat him, and vice versa.
“You don’t have to dislike somebody to compete against them,” said Saban, who has yet to lose to one of his former assistants who became head coaches. “I’m happy to see them do well wherever they go. But when we play each other, we do everything we can to try to beat them. But it’s not personal.”
Saban said beating Georgia will be very difficult.
Published: Sunday, June 17, 2018 @ 8:42 AM
JAKARTA, Indonesia — A 54-year-old Indonesian woman is dead after villagers say a 23-foot python swallowed her whole.
According to The Associated Press and Agence France-Presse, Wa Tiba of Muna Island disappeared Thursday after leaving her village, Persiapan Lawela, to tend to her garden. The next day, searchers discovered a "snake with a bloated belly" and some of Tiba's things near the garden, said the village's chief, known by the single name Faris, the AP reported.
Faris said villagers killed the python and cut it open, the AP reported. They then "found Tiba's body still intact with all her clothes," Faris said.
Graphic photos and videos posted online appeared to show the woman's body being extracted from the dead python.
This isn't the first time a python has swallowed a person in Indonesia, where such snakes are common, AFP reported. A farmer died under similar circumstances in March 2017 on the island of Sulawesi, according to the news service.
Published: Friday, June 15, 2018 @ 3:02 PM
SAN ANTONIO — Investigators found 54 people being illegally smuggled inside a tractor-trailer Tuesday night.
While watching news coverage, Armando Colunga, wanted to do something to help.
The tow truck driver drove across town to the scene where he noticed the men, women and children from Brazil, El Salvador, Guatemala and Mexico, were given water but not food, Colunga told KSAT.
There was a Little Caesars nearby. He went there and spent $50 on seven pizzas not knowing if investigators would let him give them out.
“My main motivation was, ‘Who knows how long they’ve been in there?” he told CNN.
When he got back to the scene, two detectives helped him through the yellow tape, where another officer gave the pizzas to a firefighter, who then gave them to the group, according to CNN.
"They were happy they were eating something. I figured they hadn't ate in a while," Colunga told KSAT. "They're not here to commit crime, they're here for a better life, to work. They're harder working people than some of our people here that are citizens.”
Homeland Security Investigations agents arrested the illegal immigrants. The driver, who has not been identified, was also arrested and expected to be charged with human smuggling, according to officials.
"The people rescued from this tractor-trailer were very lucky to have been discovered before the Texas heat took its toll. We have recently seen how smuggled people have died under the dangerous circumstances human smugglers transport their human cargo... (1/2)— ICE (@ICEgov) June 15, 2018
Published: Sunday, June 17, 2018 @ 8:27 PM
BIG WELLS, Texas — Five undocumented immigrants died in a chase with Border Patrol agents Sunday afternoon after the driver of the SUV they were traveling in lost control and crashed, investigators said.
There were 14 people in the Suburban, 12 were undocumented immigrants who were ejected when the vehicle crashed and rolled over, according to WOAI.
Four people died at the scene, another person later died at the hospital. Nine people were taken to hospitals.
BREAKING- @KENS5 chopper over the scene of that deadly crash after a police chase 130 miles SW of San Antonio. LEO on scene tells us 5 undocumented immigrants did not survive. @AdiGTV on the scene. pic.twitter.com/Ima5gUoNax— Jack Acosta (@JackAcostaKENS5) June 17, 2018
The chase, which reached speeds of 100 mph, started with Border Patrol agents and continued with Dimmit County sheriff’s deputies, according to KHOU.
The driver, whose identity has not been released, is known by law enforcement as a human smuggler, according to ABC News.
"The driver of this vehicle, we have handled before,” Dimmit County Sheriff Marion Boyd said. “We dealt with him last week."
Published: Sunday, June 17, 2018 @ 7:55 PM
APTOS, Calif. — A dead great white shark washed ashore Sunday morning on a California beach.
The adult male shark was found around 7 a.m. with multiple cuts on its face but nothing that appeared life-threatening, officials told KSBW.
The carcass was removed from the beach and a necropsy will be conducted to determine the cause of death.