Lane Kiffin finished at Alabama, Sarkisian assumes OC duties

Doyle BarkerЯнв 03, 2017

Recently Lane Kiffin accepted the head coaching position at Florida Atlantic University, due to his new found responsibilities, Nick Saban has made a decision to replace Kiffin with Sarkisian to remove any distractions. "At the end of the day, both of us wanted to put our players in the best position to be successful", Saban said, via SEC Country.

But let's face it, Kiffin hasn't had a great track record when it has come to his previous jobs.

Now, it's nothing new for a coach to step away once he's gotten another job.

We joked in the press box during that game that Saban might attempt to maim Kiffin on the sideline if Kiffin kept using Scarbrough so sparingly. Not just media stuff, but actual team meetings.

So for Saban to shake things up this dramatically, this close to finishing off another title, suggests that the Kiffin drama behind the scenes was even greater than the glimpses that were revealed last week in Atlanta.

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On Peach Bowl's media day, Kiffin was not only 15 minutes late, but missed the team bus back to the hotel from the stadium. (Though after the Maurice Smith transfer saga last summer, he and Saban aren't quite as chummy.) Kiffin's contract was going to expire in February whether he took the FAU job or not. He's already thrown his best player under the bus.

When asked about the legacy of his tenure at Alabama, Kiffin described it as "awesome". "You try but then you're mind's thinking about 'OK I've got to interview this guy later ... here's a list of recruits you've got to watch at night.' Versus watching extra film for the opponent and stuff". It obviously worked on Kiffin until he got a case of senior-itis last week. After the two met, they decided it was best for Kiffin to move on. "Not what they need a week before!" With Charlie Strong at South Florida and Scott Frost building up a program at Central Florida, Kiffin has his work cut out for him. But I never dreamt that you would be statements in the press and as well as so many other issues. "Your mistakes on player personnel and coaches were overlooked, based on our patience with you".

To understand what a massive mess Lane Kiffin has left on his way to Boca Raton, with Nick Saban on the cusp of his sixth national title, it's worth considering one of his trademark phrases that explains Alabama's robotic, monotonous greatness.

Despite some success with one another -which includes two College Football Playoff appearances and one title win- the relationship between Lane Kiffin and Nick Saban was rather contentious, and that's maybe putting it a tad lightly. And he will do it against an excellent Clemson defense that just shut out Ohio State in a 31-0 Fiesta Bowl rout.

Lane Kiffin is hoping for a smooth transition to new offensive coordinator Steve Sarkisian. First off, there were some major questions regarding his play-calling in the national semifinal against the Washington Huskies. They'll face No. 2 Clemson in a rematch of last year's game on January 9. This was a very hard decision, but it's a decision made in the best interests of the program. Alabama meets Clemson for the national championship next Monday in Tampa.

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