In an offseason rife with upheaval on his Alabama coaching staff, Nick Saban could be bracing for even more turnover.
According to a tweet from the New York Daily News‘ Manish Mehta, Karl Dunbar is in discussions with the Pittsburgh Steelers for a job on Mike Tomlin‘s staff. Dunbar has spent the past two seasons as the Crimson Tide’s defensive line coach, the position he would be taking with the Steelers.
Prior to coming to Tuscaloosa in May of 2016, Dunbar had spent nine seasons in the NFL — 2006-11 with the Minnesota Vikings, 2012-14 with the New York Jets. He was the line coach at each of those stops as well.
This is Dunbar’s second stint on a Saban-led staff, having served as his strength & conditioning coach at LSU from 2001-02.
Saban has already lost offensive coordinator Brian Daboll to the same job with the Buffalo Bills while defensive coordinator Jeremy Pruitt left to take over as the head coach at Tennessee, with both of those positions filled by in-house candidates. Derrick Ansley exited to become the defensive coordinator at Colorado State — before leaving there for a job with the Oakland Raiders — replaced as defensive backs coach by Karl Scott. Staffers also left Saban’s football program for jobs at Oregon, FAU and the Buffalo Bills.
To help fill those holes the departures created, the head coach has added Dan Enos (possibly quarterbacks coach), Josh Gattis (wide receivers coach) and Jeff Banks (special teams coordinator), while Pete Golding was hired as UA’s 10th assistant.
If Dunbar leaves, Saban would have two positions to fill on his 10-man Tide staff, although Enos will likely fill one of those.
UPDATED 3:41 p.m. ET: The Steelers have confirmed the hiring of Karl Dunbar as defensive line coach.
Arizona State and Mississippi State on Tuesday announced a home-and-home series to be played in 2024-25. Arizona State will host the first game in Tempe on Sept. 7, 2024, and the clubs will meet in Starkville on Sept. 6, 2025.
The Sun Devils and Bulldogs have never met previously.
The Arizona State trip is not Mississippi State’s only upcoming trek from the Deep South to the Southwest. The Bulldogs also lined up a visit to Arizona in 2020 and Texas Tech in 2029. Mississippi State will open the 2024 season against Eastern Kentucky and visit Southern Miss the week after its Arizona State visit, on Sept. 14. The Bulldogs have no other games lined up in 2025 as of yet, according to FBSchedules.
Likewise, Mississippi State is not the Sun Devils’ lone upcoming SEC opponent. Arizona State has a home-and-home with LSU on the docket for 2026-28, per FBSchedules. The Mississippi State games complete both of the Sun Devils’ non-conference schedules for these respective seasons. Arizona State opens with Wyoming and visits Texas State in 2024, and hosts Northern Arizona and Texas State in 2025.
Help is on the way for Chip Kelly‘s offensive line. One graduate transfer offensive lineman has the Bruins on his list, but another has already pulled the trigger for UCLA.
Texas Tech graduate transfer Justin Murphy on Tuesday committed to UCLA in a post on his Twitter account.
A native of Belton, Texas, Murphy signed with Texas Tech in 2014 and made four starts at right guard as a redshirt freshman. He again started four games at right guard in ’15 before moving out to tackle, where he started another four games. But after battling a series of knee injuries, Murphy announced in the middle of the 2016 season he had medically retired from the game.
After sitting out 2017, Murphy announced in March he planned to make a comeback.
UCLA remarkably started the same offensive linemen in all 13 games last season, but tackle Kolton Miller entered the NFL draft, guard Najoee Toran and center Scott Quessenberry graduated.
There are plenty of annoying trends on Twitter, but perhaps the worst is the “I’ll do X if this gets retweeted X-thousand amount of times.” I blame Wendy’s.
But blanket policies are never a good way to go through life, and an exception was made on Tuesday when Toledo offered to change its mascot from a rocket to Shrek with 500,000 retweets.
Sadly, some dreams are simply too beautiful to live in this fallen world, and the tweet was outed to be a hoax. “We are definitely not changing the school mascot to Shrek,” Toledo media relations specialist Christine Billau told USA Today. “The tweet was meant to be fun, but it caused too much of a distraction.”
Meanwhile, Bowling Green gleefully hopped on the dog pile with both elbows pointed out.
It’s not yet known to where Jack Driscoll will transfer, but the field has been significantly narrowed.
Earlier this offseason, Driscoll decided to transfer from UMass. Tuesday, the offensive tackle confirmed to Rivals.com that he’s down to three schools as a potential landing spot — Auburn, UCLA and USC.
Neither football program will have to wait long for a decision as Driscoll expects to make an announcement Wednesday. Driscoll had taken an official visit to all three of the campuses prior to whittling down his transfer to-do list.
“It will come down to one of those three schools,” the lineman told AuburnSports.com. “I feel like all three of the schools would be a good fit.”
Driscoll will graduate from UMass early next month, and will be eligible to play immediately in 2018 at whichever program he selects. The upcoming season will be the first of two years of eligibility the 6-5, 294-pound lineman has remaining.
After starting eight games as a redshirt freshman in 2016, with most of those starts coming at left guard, he started all 12 games in 2017. All of those starts this past season came at right tackle for the football-independent Minutemen. He was named to Phil Steele’s All-Independent first team while he earned second-team All-Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) honors for good measure.