Alabama coach Nick Saban's planned appearance at a benefit event Tuesday in Tennessee shows the Crimson Tide-Volunteers rivalry is alive and well, even if it's been one-sided lately.
Saban's speech at the seventh annual Athens Area Chamber of Commerce benefit dinner is expected to attract a sellout crowd of 1,500, the largest in the event's history. Rob Preston, the Chamber of Commerce president, calls it a boon for the local economy and notes that ''probably 90 percent'' of the ticket buyers are from outside McMinn County.
But the decision to invite Saban to an event less than 60 miles south of the University of Tennessee's campus has caused hard feelings in some quarters. Saban's Alabama team has won three of the last four national titles and has beaten the Vols six straight times by an average of 23.2 points.
Preston said his office had received more than 100 complaints about the Saban appearance over the last several months. Security has been beefed up for the event as a prec...