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Lane Kiffin is Alabama's new offensive coordinator

By Tom Fornelli | Staff Writer
Lane Kiffin has a career record of 35-21 as coach of Tennessee and USC. (USATSI)
Lane Kiffin will be given the keys to the Alabama offense next season. (USATSI)

Lane Kiffin is no longer unemployed.

Alabama announced on Friday afternoon that it had hired Kiffin as its new offensive coordinator. CBSSports.com's Jeremy Fowler reported on Thursday that Alabama would be hiring Kiffin for the position.

"We want to thank the University of Alabama and Coach Saban for this tremendous opportunity, and we feel humbled and honored to be a part of the Crimson Tide family," said Kiffin in a release. "I've always had the utmost respect for what Coach Saban has done with his programs. Having the unique opportunity to be here last month, I was able to meet some of the great players and the great people in the organization, and I'm very excited to start working with them. We've seen the passion and support of the Alabama fans firsthand, and when that's combined with the storied history and tradition of the program, this is a very special place to coach."

Alabama lost its former offensive coordinator, Doug Nussmeier, to Michigan earlier this week, and Kiffin had spent time with the Alabama staff before the team's Sugar Bowl appearance.

"[Kiffin] is an outstanding and creative offensive coach who has great experience both at the college and NFL level," said Nick Saban on Friday. "He has a very good understanding of the game and I have always been impressed with what I saw in the games he called."

Now while your initial reaction to this news might be to scoff or mock, I actually think it's a sensible hire. While Kiffin has no doubt had his problems running a program, the offensive coordinator gig in Tuscaloosa might be perfect for him.

First of all, there isn't a coach in the country that wouldn't want to work with the talent Alabama has available to it, and given his recruiting acumen, Kiffin should help make sure that talent keeps coming to Alabama.

Secondly, Nick Saban doesn't allow his assistants to talk to the media. Which will be just fine with Kiffin. Instead he'll be able to focus on running Alabama's offense and possibly earn himself another head coaching job in the future.

So the reality of the situation is, no matter how insane the premise might seem, that this move will likely work out for all parties involved.

Oh, and if you're wondering, Alabama heads to Knoxville to take on Tennessee on Oct. 25. That will be fun.

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