Steve Sarkisian to replace Lane Kiffin as Alabama offensive coordinator

FILE - In this July 31, 2015, file photo, Southern California coach Steve Sarkisian speaks to reporters during NCAA college Pac-12 Football media days in Burbank, Calif. Southern California coach Steve Sarkisian is taking an indefinite leave of absence after athletic director Pat Haden determined that the troubled coach is "not healthy", Sunday, Oct. 11, 2015. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill, File)

Former University of South California head coach Steve Sarkisian is the new Alabama football offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach, a press release from the university said Friday evening.

“We are pleased to be able to hire an offensive coordinator with the pedigree and experience of Steve Sarkisian,” Alabama Head Coach Nick Saban said. “He has a tremendous offensive mind and is someone we believe will do a great job of teaching and developing our football team on the offensive side of the ball. He has been a great asset to our coaching staff this season and brings a great deal of energy and enthusiasm to his job. Steve will be a phenomenal addition to our coaching staff and someone who can seamlessly transition into the job with a full understanding of how our organization works.”

Sarkisian spent 2016 as an analyst on the Crimson Tide’s staff. Before his head coaching job at the University of Southern California from 2014-2015, he was the head coach at the University of Washington from 2009-14.

“I am humbled and honored to have the opportunity to join Coach Saban’s staff, and I can’t thank The University of Alabama enough,” Sarkisian said. “I have always admired the Alabama program from afar and getting to be part of this football team these past few months has only reinforced my belief that this is the best college football organization in the country. There are many outstanding coaches and athletes at The University of Alabama, and I am extremely excited to start working with them in my new role. This is a very special place to have the opportunity to coach when you consider the program’s rich tradition and the unrivaled passion of the fan base.”

Sarkisian will take over Lane Kiffin that took the head coaching job at Florida Atlantic earlier this week.

Kiffin is expected to run the offense through the playoffs. The top-ranked Tide meets Washington Dec. 31 in the Peach Bowl semifinals game.

Sarkisian was an offensive analyst for Alabama this season.

USC fired Sarkisian in October 2015 after athletic director Pat Haden said he showed up in school in no condition to lead practice following an embarrassing public display earlier at a pep rally where he appeared to be intoxicated while giving a speech. He later sought treatment for alcoholism.

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