college football

Former Alabama first lady Dianne Bentley says she's "doing fine" days after her divorce from Gov. Robert Bentley.

Dianne Bentley filed for divorce from the governor in late August, citing an irretrievable breakdown.  A judge officially ended their 50-year marriage Tuesday.

The former first lady says God is helping her, and expressed thanks for prayers. She says she still wants to represent the state "as a lady" even though she isn't first lady anymore.

A Senate committee has approved a House-passed cigarette tax and other revenue bills as lawmakers press forward in trying to close a budget shortfall.

The Senate Finance and Taxation Committee approved the 25-cent cigarette tax after postponing a vote earlier in the day.

The committee also approved Medicaid provider taxes on pharmacies and nursing homes.

Committee Chairman Arthur Orr says negotiations are continuing and he did not know when the bills would be up for a Senate vote.

Hubbard ethics case update, Special Session preview

Sep 7, 2015

A judge says indicted House Speaker Mike Hubbard has been given a sufficient summary of the evidence against him.

Lee County Circuit Judge Jacob Walker rejected a defense request Friday for a more definite statement from prosecutors of how they allege Hubbard broke the law.

Walker says the plain language of the indictment and prosecutors' court filings have provided adequate notice.

Hubbard faces 23 ethics charges accusing him of using his public offices to benefit his businesses.

Parker trial resumes, Labor Day Travel

Sep 4, 2015

The federal trial of an Alabama police officer recorded slamming an Indian grandfather to the ground is set to resume Tuesday morning.

U.S. District Judge Madeline Hughes Haikala dismissed jurors hearing the case of Madison police officer Eric Parker for the day. 

Parker slammed 58-year-old Sureshbhai Patel to the ground in February.  He says he defied orders and reached for his pockets while he responded to a call of a suspicious person. Patel has denied that through an interpreter.

A group is questioning the role of religion inside the University of Mississippi football program, expressing concerns that a football chaplain is an inappropriate endorsement of religion by a public university.

The Clarion Ledger reports that The Freedom From Religion Foundation, a Madison, Wisconsin-based group that seeks separation between church and state, has sent a public records request to Ole Miss.

Troy University is joining a growing number of colleges selling beer at football games.

University officials say beer will be available Saturday for the Trojans' game against Duke. But fans in Veterans Memorial Stadium will have to show proper identification and get a wrist band. Officials say customers can purchase no more than two beers at one time and beer sales will be halted at the end of the third quarter.

Athletic Director John Hartwell says the sales will be monitored to make sure the stadium remains fan friendly and family friendly. / City of Tuscaloosa

The city of Tuscaloosa is joining Auburn in clamping down on ticket scalpers.

The Tuscaloosa City Council has approved a law that requires anyone involved with a ticket reselling business to get a license from City Hall.

The Tuscaloosa News reports that the license will cost $100 for both resellers and runners who purchase tickets from other individuals.

The city has been regulating ticket scalpers since the 1970s.

The city of Auburn imposed a $155 license on ticket sellers earlier this month.

acnatta / Flickr

Changes are in store for tens of thousands of football fans who will pour into Tuscaloosa for the University of Alabama's first home football game of the season. Officials are now banning parking along a road where thousands of people used to park for free, Jack Warner Parkway. The change could force more people to pay for parking or shuttle rides to Bryant-Denny Stadium. The university also has installed more cell phone antennas around the stadium in a joint venture with AT&T and Verizon Wireless.

Birmingham Public Library

GULF SHORES, Ala. (AP) — Thousands of football fans are converging on Gulf Shores, Ala., for a three-day beach festival. The event starts Friday and helps to kick off the college football season for Alabama, Auburn and LSU. Coaches from the three teams are scheduled to talk to fans on Saturday. More than 10,000 football fans are expected. A beach concert featuring the B-52s and other groups is planned for Saturday night.