FOOTBALL

How Alabama football coach Nick Saban responded to Eli Gold health update, cancer diagnosis

Maxwell Donaldson
The Tuscaloosa News

Eli Gold, the longtime voice of Alabama football, announced Friday that he was diagnosed with a treatable form of cancer. It led many, including Crimson Tide football coach Nick Saban, to send their well-wishes to Gold.

"Eli Gold has been an important part of the game day traditions at the University of Alabama for over 20 years. Our thoughts and prayers go out to Eli and his family as he begins cancer treatments. We are comforted knowing he is getting the best possible care as he works his way back to the Alabama radio booth," Saban said in a statement on Twitter on Saturday.

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Gold, 69, has been the voice of Alabama football radio since taking over play-by-play duties in 1988. He missed the 2022 season due to health issues. Chris Stewart, the usual color announcer and voice of Alabama basketball, handled football play-by-play duties in Gold's absence.

It is the latest health issue for Gold, who has been battling ongoing issues since at least April. He reported in November that he lost the ability to walk and was in the hospital for 170 days. At one point he was down to 210 pounds he told the Tuscaloosa News in November.

In November, Gold said he was planning on attempting a return to the radio booth for the 2023 A-Day game but with the recent news, it is unclear if that is still Gold's plan.