Henry Ruggs III enjoyed a standout career as one of the best receivers in college football for Nick Saban at Alabama before being drafted in the first round by the Raiders in the 2020 NFL Draft.
However, in his second season in the league, Ruggs got behind the wheel of his car and hit speeds of 156 miles per hour before colliding with another car, ending the life of the young woman in that car.
While in Tuscaloosa, Ruggs had no disciplinary issues, but the decision for him to get behind the wheel that night in Vegas forever changed the course of his life, and a host of other lives as well.
During a recent talk for the Alabama Football Coaches Association, Nick Saban shared the story of Henry Ruggs to drive home a message about leadership.
"It is harder now, more than ever before, to influence other people on the team because people are more apprehensive about being leaders than they have ever been before, because they are afraid of what others think."
Saban goes on to share how Ruggs' story is a prime example of that.
In that situation, a good friend and leader would have taken Ruggs' keys away.
"It probably would have pissed him off. Probably would have made him mad. Probably wouldn't have though very much of you for doing that. But would he be better off now?" Saban asks, with clear passion and conviction in his voice.
"So what kind of friend were you, and what kind of leader were you when you allowed the guy to do it? But no one wants to do that, because they're afraid of what someone is going to think of them."
Critics of the short clip of Saban's message below will try to say how the responsibility of that night is solely on the shoulders of Ruggs. Saban isn't one to skirt personal responsibility, so what the message he shares on leadership in a situation like that should ring true with all kinds of folks.