Alabama assistant Bryan Hodgson unsure Nick Saban knows he's a Tide basketball coach

Erik Hall
The Tuscaloosa News

Bryan Hodgson is in his second season as an Alabama men's basketball assistant coach. 

He said Friday on the "Best Bets Podcast" that he is unsure if Alabama football head coach Nick Saban knows that Hodgson is an Alabama basketball assistant coach. 

Podcast host Jeff Goodman asked Hodgson, "Does Nick Saban know who you are? If you walk by Nick Saban, does he have any idea who you are? Or does he think you're like the equipment manager? Honestly, be honest." 

"I'd like to tell myself he does," Hodgson said jokingly. "But more than likely, the equipment manager." 

Hodgson then talked about how he helped Alabama football with some recruiting in the past year for Terrion Arnold and Ga'Quincy "Kool Aid" McKinstry.

Alabama football signee Kool Aid McKinstry is seen with the Alabama basketball team in Coleman Coliseum before the game with Mississippi State Saturday, Jan. 23, 2021. [Staff Photo/Gary Cosby Jr.]

"I have done a little bit with recruiting with them this past year," Hodgson said. "They were able to get two big-time five-star, multi-sport athletes — basketball, football guys. And I was the lead recruiter on our side for those two guys." 

On the podcast, Hodgson said he did Zoom calls with them and broke down film. 

McKinstry has already practiced some with the Alabama men's basketball team after signing a football scholarship with Alabama in December. 

"I did a little bit with that stuff," Hodgson said on the podcast before going back to talking about if Saban knows him. "That'd be the only way. The dude, if he (Nick Saban) was to walk in — I don't think he can even go to a restaurant in Tuscaloosa. It's impossible. He literally has to get in his car and go home. It's a little bit of a different life, man."

Alabama Crimson Tide forward Herbert Jones (1) and assistant coach Bryan Hodgson celebrate their win against Iona during the first round of the 2021 NCAA Tournament on Saturday, March 20, 2021, at Hinkle Fieldhouse in Indianapolis, Ind.

Hodgson talked to the USA Today Network on Sunday about Arnold and McKinstry. 

"Basketball is going to give both guys the opportunity to play and hope that they may be able to do both — as challenging as that may be," Hodgson said Sunday.

Hodgson said Sunday that he didn't intend his comments to be disrespectful to Saban and that he was joking on the "Best Bets Podcast." 

"Coach Saban is so busy over there, he doesn't have time to worry about who the assistant basketball coaches are," Hodgson said. 

Alabama men's basketball is scheduled to continue its season against UCLA in the NCAA Tournament Sweet 16 on Sunday, March 28. 

No. 11-seeded UCLA enters the game 20-9 overall. UCLA beat Abilene Christian 67-47 in the NCAA Tournament second round on Monday.

No. 2 seed Alabama comes into the matchup 26-6 overall. On Monday, Alabama beat Maryland 96-77 in the second round of the NCAA Tournament. 

Entering Sunday, UCLA leads the all-time series 3-2 vs. Alabama. 

Here's more Alabama basketball news: 

Nate Oats is the Alabama men's basketball head coach. Mick Cronin is the UCLA men's basketball head coach.  

Erik Hall is the lead digital producer for sports with the USA Today Network. You can find him on Twitter @HallErik.