Alabama’s offensive coordinator is headed to Michigan, and that is a good thing for the future of Alabama football.

The vacancy created by fired Michigan OC Al Borges (just how many places has this man been fired from?) was filled by Doug Nussmeier who served in the same post under Nick Saban for the past two seasons.

Under Nussmeier Alabama’s offensive was stable, but never potent. The Tide posted points and wins against the teams it should’ve blown out with the talent that’s in Tuscaloosa.

But in big games playcalling became tight, if not questionable. The 2013 Iron Bowl will forever go down as one of the most puzzling offensive game plans in Alabama history. The Tide showed its hand time and again on 3rd and 4th and short, giving the opponent a clear advantage to run blitz to stop obvious, stubborn, one set-back between-the-tackles runs at the end of the game. Some of that falls on Nick Saban. But the rest falls on the man who he entrusted with scoring enough points to win the game: Doug Nussmeier.

Simply put, Alabama’s 2013 offense had no identity. Zero. Zilch. Notta. And that has to change as football continues to evolve. Alabama’s defense will continue to put pressure on high scoring, potent offenses, and win the battle more times than not. But having an offense that can blister you with points is a must for 2014 and beyond. Gene Stallings-style football is dead. Period.

Immediate reaction from Tide recruits seems to indicate that the needle isn’t moving on the decision. Top quarterback commitment Ricky Town (a 2015 recruit) of Ventura-St. Bonaventure, CA indicated his approval:


Lane Kiffin
Early candidates for the OC job include a host of well-known names. Lane Kiffin was in town reportedly for about a week over the holidays consulting with the Tide’s offensive staff. Strong sources indicate that Kiffin will be interviewing for the job as early as today. Kiffin’s pro-style fits with Saban’s offensive philosophies. Kiffin failed as a head coach at Oakland (where everybody else fails too) and ultimately at USC, where NCAA sanctions had him bound from day one. But the one year he spent in Knoxville made Tide fans happy to see him head west. His game plan for the 2009 Tennessee-Alabama game was stellar, almost pulling off the miracle to dethrone the eventual BSC National Champs.

Kiffin’s past personal antics have earned him his fair share of critics, so his insertion into the Tide’s staff would be interesting to say the least. Alabama is already the most hated program in the country due to its prolonged dominance and success, something not quenched by one season that fell short. The national ire over the hire, especially from Knoxville, would be an interesting seasoning to things at Alabama.

Other strong possibilities are surfacing as well.


Billy Napier would be a promotion from within, currently the Tide’s wide receiver’s coach. Napier has served as OC and quarterbacks coach at Clemson. An offensive analyst on the Tide’s 2011 staff, Napier followed then Tide OC Jim McElwain to Colorado State as offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach. After one season he chose to return to the Capstone as wide receiver’s coach.

Rick Neuheisel
Rick Neuheisel has a storied history in the game, serving as head coach at Colorado, Washington and UCLA, as well as coordinator at at UCLA, Colorado and the Baltimore Ravens. In his prime while at Colorado, Neuheisel was one of the names in college football, reportedly ready to accept the Alabama job following Gene Stallings had Bama fans not committed one of our many infractions of stupidity with the “fax campaign for Mike Dubose” in 1997. This option would be an interesting one for Alabama, as Neuheisel’s history with having offensive heavy teams that offer little defensive resistance led to his undoing at UCLA.

The other sexy pick is Clemson OC Chad Morris, who is making $1.4 Million. Tide defensive coordinator Kirby Smart already makes about that, a precedent proving Bama will pay what’s necessary for the right leader. Morris would bring a completely different style to Tuscaloosa, which could be a good thing. Again however, history points to Saban keeping things close to the way they are from a philosophy standpoint. But if the game is changing, might his philosophies be changing with it?

With national signing day looming, one would expect Alabama head coach Nick Saban to act quickly. However, that hasn’t always been the case with Saban, who opts for the clean, clear decision over knee-jerk reaction. Still, good indications are that the job will be filled in the next 48 hours, and that the man taking the post is named Lane Kiffin.

(Follow ITK on Twitter for Bama news, commentary and smack.)

37 thoughts on “Big changes coming to Tide offensive staff”

  1. Lane Kiffin ! Bring it on ! I’m all for some change after our last two performances . Too much talent to be wasting with that offense . ROLL TIDE !

  2. I would love to see Chad Morris at the University of Alabama. He does a lot of press for Clemson (at least certainlly when compared to Nuss) and he’s definitely a good leader and a good cultural fit for Alabama. I was lucky enough to go to two home Clemson games this season and had a blast, but the offensive play choices in particular were very exciting and diverse at Clemson all season. I can’t help but wonder how much beter it might have worked at Alabama with the 2013 roster.

    Lane Kiffin is the oulier here. He bothers me. I don’t think he’s a good cultural fit at Alabama. He did a lot more sketchy stuff at Tennessee than people gave him credit (or punishment) for, the players didn’t like him both at UT and USC, and, frankly, I don’t trust him. That’s not to say he doesn’t deserve a shot, but I definitely think other coaches could fill the role better and that’s really the bottom line.

    Whoever gets it, it’s exciting. Nuss might not have been spectacular, but he absolutely wasn’t a failure and it’s hard to wish him anything other than success at Michigan.

    Saban has been beaten by new offensive philosophies, and nearly beaten by them more than once. No, it wasn’t the hurry-up-no-huddle on its own that led to Alabama losing more games in a season than in three years (two), but nothing gave Alabama a bigger challenge. Football is changing. In a world where Duke, TAMU, Louisville, Baylor and Auburn are having unprecedented success, it simply can’t be any surprise that Nick Saban is eager to adapt and to once again change the face of college football.

    For anyone who is concerned about Alabama’s offense going forward, I say now is the time to get excited. Do you think Alabama is going to fall on its face? Or will they be better than ever?

    Look at history to find the answer. Roll Tide.

    1. I’ll say this, if it’s Kiffin, I’m excited. He’s done some dumb things in his young career that get done when put on that kind of stage in a young career. But mainly off the field stuff, with a hot mic in his hand.

      Look at Nick Saban’s career. He wasn’t the coach he is now (at 62) that he was at 42. This would be an incredible opportunity for him.

      Ultimately it’d be a huge improvement; the dude can develop quarterbacks, which is what we need most at the moment with a fresh crop.

      1. ITK NOTE: Read this Auburn fan’s post pretending to be an Alabama fan at your own amusement/descretion. Bamaboy, you fool no one.

        How the hell is this an improvement? Back that statement up with facts! Kiffin is a joke that gets these types of jobs because of his Daddy. Almost anyone else would be coaching in D3 or High School by now. We had the coach in place to develop QBs.

        Per CBS : ” A former NFL QB, Nussmeier also has earned a reputation as one of the country’s best developers of quarterbacks. Among his proteges: Bama’s AJ McCarron, Washington’s Jake Locker and Keith Price and Michigan State’s Drew Stanton and Jeff Smoker. Nussmeier also coached QBs for the St. Louis Rams in 2006-07 and helped Marc Bulger, a former sixth-round pick, make it to a Pro Bowl.”

        Kiffin would be a major step back for our Offense. Instead of trying to keep up with the rest of the SEC, we are now giving them a head start that we may not be able to come back from. Unfucking real

        1. You continue with your dumbass tale from the previous thread. You are not an Alabama fan. Go away.

      2. But Kiffin did so much against the rules, on his own, behind everyone else’s back. Frankly, he scares me because of how he’s represented himself and not being able to fit into the do-it-right mantra under Nick Saban.

        I’ll wait until the decision comes, but I can’t pretend I’m not pulling for another guy, that’s all. I’m not going to act like I know better than Nick Saban about who to hire, but I’d still rather have Chad Morris.

        I’ll say this; if Alabama does hire Kiffin, once again Alabama immediately becomes the lead-in topic for every radio show, tv sports program, newspaper and Twitter feed. Hell, the day after the final BCS National Title game I heard more about Alabama than Auburn or FSU. Roll Tide.

    2. ITK NOTE: Read this Auburn fan’s post pretending to be an Alabama fan at your own amusement/descretion. Bamaboy, you fool no one.

      Carefull, ITK will accuse you of being a barner next….

  3. ITK NOTE: Read this Auburn fan’s post pretending to be an Alabama fan at your own amusement/descretion. Bamaboy, you fool no one.

    Lane Fucking Kiffin!? Lane Fucking Kiffin!? If Bama hires Kiffin, we will be the laughing stock of the College Football world. Please say this is a cruel joke by some Auburn message board!

    1. I will say that, right after I expose you for being an Auburn troll on an Alabama message board. But really good attempt, I have to say. You even have “Bama” in your name. Nice touch.

  4. ITK NOTE: Read this Auburn fan’s post pretending to be an Alabama fan at your own amusement/descretion. Bamaboy, you fool no one.

    OMG ITK , do you not see the path that Saban is taking this program down? The lack of appreciation by us fans has left a bitter taste in Coach Saban’s mouth. Now as far as being a ” Troll on an Alabama message board “, we talk about Auburn more than we do Alabama……

    1. The lack of appreciation by us fans has left a bad taste in Saban’s mouth?

      I, for one, am not one of those fans. Neither is

      But then you say I’m arrogant and complacent because I’m not furious with Alabama? I don’t get it.

      You continue to make it very clear that instead you don’t appreciate Alabama in spite of having fewer losses in two years than championships under Saban’s clock. We’re publishing stories about Alabama, for one. You’re not. We’re not talking more about Auburn than Alabama, despite the accusation.

      You are a pessimist. I think it’s as simple as that. It’s ok, it’s just not represenative of the rest of the program or the university. I think it’s time to start listening to what the University of Alabama has to teach you. For example, look up some speeches by Nick Saban, or find “Gamechanger” for free on youtube and watch it. Listen to what the coach and the school has to say. Try it. We’re not crazy or arrogant fans, we’re simply listening, and I agree with what they’re saying.

    2. Bamaboy is an Auburn or LSU fan. I just wish he could hide it better. He is too obvious.

      I do enjoy watching him “fool” everyone. I’m sure he is proud of his abilities.

      As of the new OC…I think it will be Kiffin (like it or not). I think Kiffin is a good Offensive mind and recruiter….it’s just his character that I am worried about.

    3. Go away stupid ass. You’re wasting our time. But I absolutely see the path Saban is taking us down – The path is 3 Natty’s in 4 years, 72-9 record in 6 years and NCAA records that may never be broken. Thank God for the path! Bwaa Haww Haww.

  5. ITK NOTE: Read this Auburn fan’s post pretending to be an Alabama fan at your own amusement/descretion. Bamaboy, you fool no one.

    Conduit, If you just look back right before the Sugar Bowl, i was predicting a big win by Bama. That being said , i can only tow the rope so long. You would have to be completly blind not to see that the Alabama football program took a big step back this year. This was supposed to be our year. We was suppose to have one of the best Offenses in the Nation, and the typical Bama hellacious Defense. Now factor in the stars we are losing next season, and that is a recipe for an even more average year. The hiring of kiffin is in no way a step in the right direction. If I was an Auburn/LSU fan , I would be giddy as hell of the news of Kiffin to Alabama. We as fans need to let our voices be heard. Another thing to factor is IF, and thats a huge if , the NCAA plans on doing any type of research into the D.J. Fluker stuff, Kiffin is one of the last people that you would want on your staff at that time. I hope this is just a smoke Screen by Saban to cover up who he is really trying hire. Note to ITK, take your own advice and tsop drinking the kool-aid. Just because you are a fan of a school does not mean you have to agree with every decision made by the coaching staff. You are setting you and the school up for failure.

    1. You were expecting a gigantic blowout win and I said I didn’t understand why you doubted Oklahoma so much. I expected a win too, in particular because I didn’t think the mistakes in the Auburn game were characteristic.

      Then you questioned why Alabama got beat, not the mistakes they made, which you said was just me being arrogant and making excuses.

      Now you’re complaining about Kiffin being hired.

      I just want to make one thing clear———he hasn’t been hired. It’s ok to have an opinion, it’s another thing to get upset about things people haven’t said or that haven’t even happened.

      No, we as fans don’t need to let our voices be heard, and if we did complaining about it here when we lose a single game isn’t going to help. You don’t get to choose your coaches. A lot of people at Florida weren’t happy with Meyer, but you don’t get to choose. We should be so lucky for both Saban and the University of Alabama to share the same goals and to hire him at the right time for both.

      No, you don’t have to agree with every choice Alabama makes. But you don’t have to look at it all as a worst-possible case scenario when, truth be told, Alabama continues to control their own destiny if nothing else.

      Listen to me on this part. Alabama is great right now. Maybe the best ever, and maybe the best they ever will be. Do yourself a favor and enjoy it. It can’t last forever. It just can’t. Complain about it later if Alabama tanks or if Nick Saban dies or if they find illegal panda bear trafficking documentation from a former player or anything else you’re worried about. That doesn’t mean bury your head in the sand, but if you’re disappointed with Alabama at this time in our history, I’m not sure what else I can say or do to help.

    2. I have never read writing from such a badly camoflauged Auburn troll in my life. Hence the note I had to add to this post. You are an idiot.

  6. Kiffin would be an interesting hire. Kitchen, not so much. Bama’s worst ever QB. But Kiffin was not responsible for UheaT’s near win in ’09. Kiffin is an offensive coach and the Vol offense sucked. Tennessee almost beat us with a lock down defense. It was also during McElroy’s 4 or 5 game brain fart period. And it was USC’s defense that did them in. Under Kiffin they had an explosive tailback heavy offense, as USC is famous for. Still, how would Saban keep Kiffin’s mouth under lock and key?

    1. I’m not agreeing with anything, but just for the sake of saying so, Kiffin is literally the best coach Tennessee has had since they fired Phil Fulmer. He had a winning record and went to a bowl game, at least.

  7. That’s a fact. Just don’t see how Saban can control or even live with a head strong, opinionated, conceited, loose canon. Other than that everything is fine. LOL!

  8. Bamaboy, you think to much like a Barney to be a BAMA fan. We took steps backwards in what way? We didn’t play mistake free football. We turned the ball over more than ever, at inoppurtune times, and we jumped offsides at inoppurtune times. Those mistakes, even a Barney like yourself, can see. What you miss is how many missed assignments we had all over the field. We have the greatest group of athletes we may have ever had at one time. They played complacent and with an entitlement attitude. Not all of them just enough to cost us the one game to take another crystal ball. The loss at whordan bleachers will never leave my mind. We had the team and coach to win three in a row, but we didn’t have attitude to accomplish it. The barn didn’t have the players or the coach to pull it off, but in their delusional minds, they believed they could do it. As we all know, they almost did. They thought they had something to prove. We’ll have something to prove next year. We dropped something that did belong to us. Someone else, FSU, picked it up. We have something to prove next year, and we will.

    I don’t like Kiffin, but I’ll trust Saban’s football knowledge and personnel decisions over mine everyday.

    Could someone explain to me Hunh offense is. I get the point that it’s gustoff’s, but is this an acronym for something I missed?


  9. I will be interesting to see what many of you have to say about the HUNH if Morris is given the job, given your multitude of previous negative posts about it.

    1. AUtiger, you are right about that however I doubt CNS will go that route for the very fact that he has had so much success with the pro style O. I believe this is a refresh button move, not a restart.

    2. I can’t disagree with you. I’ve said many times I think the HUNH is a cheap offensive scheme based on trickery. I doubt Saban goes that route, but if he does I’ll go with it. One, because Saban has forgotten more about the game than I’ll ever know, and two because the game is changing. You have to have the ability to score points and lots of them, no matter who you’re playing.

      I’m not sure Bama’s current scheme could put up 49 points on the road in the searing heat at College Station like it did last year, week in and week out. Bama had no running game in 2013, and without a running game their passing game, based on play action, was hampered greatly.

      We’ll see what he does. But I don’t think any of the candidates would be a bad choice.

    3. I’m sure you’ll just bash this, but Chad Morris runs a faster paced offense, not the HUNH. I’m just saying.

  10. Well hell, if ya’ll want that shit then let’s hire BYU’s OC. They averaged 100 plays a game. Talk about killing the defense. Screw that shit. Saban will never go to a true spread HUNH. You can’t build the kind of defense that he specializes in when you run that pussy offense. Everybody ends up running their ass off trying to catch all the damn chickens and they never get to bust ass one on one, which is what makes a defense tough. Now if you want to train sissy’s for a soccer team, then by all means go HUNH. Saban has a fundamental flaw in his defense when it goes against a true HUNH with good talent, and so far he hasn’t found a way to correct it. I’ll guarantee you that he will find a way, cause he just is not going to radically change his system. But the truth is, he doesn’t need radical change. You do realize that we would have stomped hell out of Weagle, Okie and FSU if the team had not decided to play stupid, and if the play calling had been more aggressive. We scored almost enough on offense playing like shit on defense to have won the games. Okie did not run on us, and Weagle did not pass on us. Weagle did not run all that great on FSU, but the had lots more yards total. Bama’s defense when playing its best is better than FSU’s. Under the system we are now using, there is no way any team should beat Bama when we score 28 points. This defense just did not have the talent, experience and chemistry that our last 4 defense’s had on the line or in the secondary. It is not necessary to change the system. It is only necessary to play like champions. I’m for hiring Kiffin or Neuheisel or Groh. Kitchens is a stupid idea. He’s the worst QB in Bama history. He does not have the experience or imagination to run some kind of hybrid pro set HUNH. What’s more, he looks even less like an athlete now than he did in college. With out a doubt he has never passed on an offer to eat at Golden Corral. Talk about a step backwards. I’d rather have McElwain or Nussmeir coaching drunk than Kitchens sober. And forget McElwain’s excoordinator at Colorado St. That’s why he’s not at Colorado St anymore. Their offense sucked in 2012. This year without him, Mac’s offense was very good. RTR!

    1. I couldn’t disagree more about Alabama’s defense being bad this year. Yes, the HUNH helps, but Alabama helped the HUNH by turning the ball over on fundamental mistakes more times in the two losses than the rest of the season combined. I would argue throwing a soft lob short into triple coverage is something the defense doesn’t have control of, for example, and while busted deep coverage is one thing, the HUNH is designed to cause confusion, not break down fundamentals. The fact that when the HUNH was replaced on any given down with line-up football these teams were mostly stuffed should help explain why the HUNH isn’t Alabama’s kryptonite, it’s Alabama’s stubbed toe. I dislike the HUNH more for how difficult it is to try to watch on television and in person than for how teams that use it have had any degree of success against Alabama. It simply isn’t enough on its own.

      For what it’s worth, there are more teams running faster-paced offenses than ever before, attempting to score more points as a result of running more plays and attempt to win that way rather than leaning on a markable defense at all. While Saban is recruiting smaller, faster guys to adjust to these styles of offense, the idea is that it will help more against the faster initial pace rather than to explicitly combat the HUNH, and that’s what I’m most curious about with Alabama’s offense going forward——I still like man-up, face-to-face, smashmouth football, but the field is starting to run dry of teams that are willing to play football that way, notably in the SEC.

      1. Agree with your opinion, Conduit. I think Bama’s defense suffered more from having no disruptive giant on their defensive line, notably the noseguard position. If the Bama D missed anything this year, it was Jesse Williams disrupting the formations and plays of the opposing team by taking on 2 and 3 offensive linemen and still getting into the backfield on nearly every play. As Gene Stallings has said, the way to defend the HUNH is to make sure everyone in the backfield is on their butts when the play starts. I sure hope we can get a true run-stopper at noseguard in the next season. Can you imagine the season CJ Mosely would have had if there had been the prior season’s D-line in place?

        1. I hear you. CJ Mosely did have a stellar season last year too, don’t forget. I’ll miss that guy. The University of Alabama turned him from a talented player to a very talented leader.

  11. So it is official, Lane Kiffin? I’m willing to give him a shot. He has a good track record as an OC and I believe was just not ready to be a head coach at a pretty young age. We’ll see won’t we? And to think I JUST got through submitting a basketball article. Bama 1-0 in SEC play. Meanwhile in Birmingham UAB is 11-3 in roundball with a win over North Carolina. More on basketball later.

  12. ITK NOTE: B.S. alert…This poster was posting as “Bamaboy,” pretending to be a “concerned Bama fan.” He has no integrity. Read at your own amusement/descretion.

    Kiffin……ROFLMFAO!!!!! This is the funniest shit I have heard in a long while! You bastards was just calling this guy ” lame kiffin ” a few years ago , and now you are here singing his praises? Fucking hilarious! kiffin’s wife thought living in Knoxville was bad!? Wait till she meets the bubba’s in Tuscaloosa! Great hire nicky!

  13. It is what it is …. Despite all the bitching and moaning there isn’t much that can be done about it now . Only time will tell how this is gonna play out . Saban is no fool . But if it were Auburn or anywhere else that hired this guy for the position what would you do about it ?? I’m up for change and have never really thought much about the guy until his name was brought up a few weeks ago . No matter what path you take in life we all make mistakes and bad decisions some more worse than others. He isn’t gonna be making the big decisions or be in control of the program . He is gonna be under one of the best if not the best coach in college football this day . Different situation , same guy . We all have to grow up in our lives and careers at some point and time . No matter what . ROLL TIDE !!!! 2 losses and people want Saban run out of town . 2 losses … Smdh . A true fan stands behind their team . Laugh it up Aubies . This Offense more than likely is gonna hand your asses to you next year . I’m confident the Gus bus has run out of gas . Kinda like ol Cam Newton and Marshall . Both got in trouble for stealing and such but were the greatest thing since bottled water . Hypocrites . Lmao .

  14. Lame Kiffin. You mullets will be asking for his head after two games with a new Qback. Haha. Auburn definitely will be headed to next years playoff while you gumps will be wallowing in your own hatred!!!!!

    1. In the words of Aerosmith, “Dream on, dream on…”

      There aren’t enough miracles to get y’all to the playoffs. And you just lost your top rusher, the one who broke B-B-B-B-B-B-o’s records.

      Oh wait, Cameron Artis-Payne is even better than Mason was, right? That’s always the Auburn ploy…even though if that were the case Tre freaking Mason wouldn’t have been the bell cow, but that makes too much sense, eh barner? Just like “Jeremy Johnson iz even better than that thar Nick Marshulllll…”


      You won’t even compete for the West title next year. Your flash in the pan came and went. Hope you enjoyed it.

  15. Ya think maybe Saban was just a little bit more pissed off about losing to the Chicken Farm than he let show? He’s not the type to blame others when he’s in charge,, but he along with the rest of us must have had a chapped ass about the play calling. Now we know the real reason Lame, can I still call him Lame, confusing, came to TitleTown. Saban intended to file 13 ol’ Nuss. Bwaa Haww Haww! Didn’t take long 7 years for that ol’ West Virginie boy to learn what we do in Alabama to coaches when they fuck up the Iron Bowl. Ya’ll do know that Kifin was once a hell of an assisstant at USC. He coached the only team in history with dual Heisman winners – Bush an Lienart. This will be interesting. Now the fuckung Weagles have something to entertain them.ROTFLMMFAO! RTR!

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