In yesterday’s Rumor Mill, we reported that Alabama defensive backs coach Greg Brown was likely to step down, and that there could be additional movement on Nick Saban’s staff.
It looks like those moves are all but official now.
ESPN reports that Brown has indeed stepped down and that defensive coordinator Kirby Smart will move from linebackers coach over to the secondary.
Kevin Steele, who spent last season as director of player personnel, will take over linebacker coaching duties from Smart, rounding out the Tide’s on-field staff.
Though he was hired prior to the 2013 season to spearhead Alabama’s off-field recruiting efforts, it was only a matter of time before he returned to an on-field role.
Prior to hiring Georgia’s Todd Grantham, Bobby Petrino offered Steele the defensive coordinator job at Louisville. But with the opportunity to move back on the field, Steele decided to remain in Tuscaloosa.
Steele was previously defensive coordinator at Clemson and Alabama, and was head coach at Baylor from 1999-2002.
The 2013 season was Brown’s only one at Alabama. He was defensive coordinator at Colorado the two prior seasons and has 15 years experience coaching in the NFL.
Returning to the secondary should be easy transition Smart, who coached there previously and played safety in college.
Smart made it clear that he wasn’t happy with Alabama’s inconsistency at cornerback in 2013.
“We are not used to that,” he told the media prior to the Sugar Bowl. “We’ve kind of always had one key guy with all the first -round, second-round corners we’ve had, we’ve always had a staple guy there, then kind of an understudy that was the other one who was an up-and-coming corner.
“Hasn’t been that way this year. It’s been frustrating.”