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ATHENS, Tenn. -- Former first-round draft pick Rolando McClain is back at his alma mater now that his NFL career has ended.
Alabama coach Nick Saban said Tuesday at an Athens (Tenn.) Area Chamber of Commerce benefit dinner at Tennessee Wesleyan College that McClain has re-enrolled at Alabama.
|Recently retired Rolando McClain is back in school at Alabama, where he won the Butkus Award as the nation's top linebacker in 2009.|
"I know a lot of people get disappointed in Rolando McClain and a lot of the things he's struggled with, but he's with us now," Saban said, according to AL.com.
McClain, 23, won the Butkus Award as the nation's top linebacker in 2009 while leading Alabama to a national title during his junior year, his final season at the school before declaring for the NFL draft.
Saban credited McClain for being a "phenomenal leader" when he played for him.
"He affected everybody in the organization at a time when we needed leadership because we had a lot of bad things happen when I first got there," he said, according to AL.com.
He played three seasons with the Oakland Raiders, who selected him with the eighth overall pick in the 2010 draft. McClain signed with the Baltimore Ravens in April, but he was charged with disorderly conduct and resisting arrest shortly afterward, his third arrest in his hometown of Decatur, Ala., since 2011.
McClain said in a statement last month that he loves playing football but he decided to retire to get his personal life in order and "God willing," he might play in the NFL again.
"Clearly, my decision to retire has raised some questions. Quite simply, I love football, but I have decided at this time it is in my best interest to focus on getting my personal life together," McClain said in the statement.
"Beyond that, I'm not sure what the future holds for me, including football. This was entirely my decision and the Ravens have been very supportive during this process. I am very grateful for the opportunity they gave me and wish them the best of luck in the future. God willing, maybe I'll play for them one day."
In 41 career games with Oakland, McClain had 6.5 sacks, one interception, one forced fumble and no fumble recoveries.
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.