Zaxby’s has locations on Burkhardt Road in Evansville and on High Pointe Drive in Newburgh. Zaxbys Building

Former Tennessee head coach Jeremy Pruitt has been in the headlines recently after it was revealed that he, his wife, and multiple Tennessee football staff members provided around $60,000 in impermissible benefits to college football recruits and their families.

Pruitt was fired two years ago and was replaced by Josh Heupel. But before he was the Vols’ head coach, he was the defensive coordinator for the Alabama Crimson Tide under head coach Nick Saban. Former Alabama beat writer John Talty, who has a book about Nick Saban that is about to come out, recently dropped an anecdote about Pruitt and Saban on the recruiting trail.

“One night out recruiting, Pruitt and Saban are looking to get some food,” wrote Talty. “Pruitt suggests Zaxby’s. Saban looks at Pruitt and says, “What the f*** is a Zaxby’s?

Talty continued his story.

“So now Pruitt, a man who famously didn’t know what asparagus was on national TV, has to explain to Nick Saban what a Zaxby’s is. He decides on, “It’s like a classier Chick-fil-A, Coach.”

In case you’re like Saban and don’t know, Zaxby’s is a very popular chicken restaurant with franchises across the South, though they aren’t as well known as Chik Fil-a.

Some fans were amused by the tale and the fact that Saban, who has coached Alabama since 2007, did not know about Zaxby’s, which has three restaurants in Tuscaloosa alone.

After he was fired back in 2020, some Alabama fans wanted Pruitt to return as their defensive coordinator, but with this latest allegation, it’s extremely unlikely he’ll be swapping fast food stories with fellow coaches anytime soon.

[John Talty]

About Stacey Mickles

Stacey is a 1995 graduate of the University of Alabama who has previously worked for other publications such as Sportskeeda and Saturday Down South.