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How Nick Saban, Lane Kiffin joined forces at Alabama

Lane Kiffin AP

Pete Thamel and Thayer Evans have a look at how Lane Kiffin’s hiring as offensive coordinator at Alabama came to be, with interest there dating back to 2007 (and, of course, involving Jimmy Sexton).

But Nick Saban invited Kiffin to Tuscaloosa for eight days in December, in which the ex-USC coach got an up-close look at the strongest program in college football. Apparently, Saban enjoyed the time enough that when Doug Nussmeier left for Michigan, Kiffin was a viable candidate to replace him.

In early January, before he got hired at Alabama, Kiffin went into detail with about what he learned from being ensconced in Saban’s world. When asked what impressed him, Kiffin asked, “How long you got?”

On Kiffin’s first night in town, he had a three-hour dinner at Saban’s house. Every night after that, they’d spend 15 minutes going over their respective notes on the day. Kiffin said Saban paid for his flight and hotel room.

“It was something neat Nick did knowing I was out here doing nothing,” Kiffin told in January. “It was good for both of us, and it was good for me to be around ball again.”

There’s a *ton* of other good stuff in the SI article, so for all you college football-starved fans out there, spend some time and read it all. Less than nine months until kickoff.
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13 Responses to “How Nick Saban, Lane Kiffin joined forces at Alabama”
  1. mauldawg says: Feb 4, 2014 3:56 PM

    Those two deserve each other. How long before LK screws up Alabama. The NCAA must be just waiting for the 2 of them to sink the football program.

  2. mogogo1 says: Feb 4, 2014 4:07 PM

    No surprise Kiffin would be impressed by Saban. It’d been a very long time since Lane had been anywhere near that thing called “winning.” Even when he had talent it still escaped him. The question remains why that fact didn’t scare the heck out of Saban.

  3. 8to80texansblog says: Feb 4, 2014 4:18 PM

    “Less than nine months until kickoff.”


    I just shed a tear….


  4. eagles512 says: Feb 4, 2014 4:49 PM

    It’s actually less than 7 months.

  5. dhardy8207 says: Feb 4, 2014 5:52 PM

    8to80texansblog says;

    “I just shed a tear….



    Aaawww, it will be ok. Time will fly by… :-)

  6. polegojim says: Feb 4, 2014 7:19 PM

    Happy for their marriage… and happy for my Wolverines landing Nuss… hope it works out for everyone.

  7. Deb says: Feb 4, 2014 7:57 PM

    Keep dreaming–or should I say, salivating?–mauldawg.

  8. vols84 says: Feb 4, 2014 10:02 PM

    It’s Mr. Saban to you scooter. You haven’t earned the right to call him Nick…unless of course you and Layla can do a mean electric slide.

  9. auburntigers34 says: Feb 4, 2014 10:24 PM

    Pete Thamel and Thayer Evans……..LOL

  10. suprmous says: Feb 4, 2014 10:30 PM

    I can only imagine of what those who’re in the Beyond are thinkin, i.e. Bear, Coach Thomas, among others.

  11. suprmous says: Feb 4, 2014 10:33 PM

    Pardon my manners but I forgot Coach Wade.

  12. Professor Fate says: Feb 5, 2014 12:14 AM

    Too bad Kiffin didn’t get exposed to Saban before he became a head coach anywhere.

  13. normtide says: Feb 5, 2014 12:33 AM

    Some people are funny. I think Coach Saban knows what he is doing.

    Auburn34, I knew AU fans hate Thayer Evans, and I don’t blame them. He had a serious hate going for Newton. My buddy spent an hour one day just making fun of how he looked.

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