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Pro-union ad featuring former Alabama coach Nick Saban was done without permission, he says

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (AP) — Former University of Alabama football coach Nick Saban said a pro-union advertisement that features his past comments was done without his permission.

The ad by More Perfect Union Solidarity is airing as more than 5,000 Mercedes workers in Alabama vote this week on whether to join the United Auto Workers. The ad included comments the legendary football coach made when asked a question about the possible organization of college athletes.

“Not only were these comments taken entirely out of context, they were also being used without my knowledge or permission. I do not personally endorse the UAW or its campaign and have asked the UAW to remove any advertisements featuring me from circulation,” Saban said in a statement.

“I encourage all Team Members to exercise their right to vote in the upcoming election,” Saban added.

More Perfect Union Solidarity President Faiz Shakir maintained that “we didn’t take anything Coach said out of context.”

“We presented his public statements exactly as he made them; and we’d ask people to watch the ad and judge for themselves,” Shakir said.

Voting ends Friday in the high-stakes election that comes as the UAW is trying to crack union resistance in the Deep South.

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