Alabama hires Patriots assistant Brian Daboll to run offense

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (AP) Alabama has hired New England Patriots assistant Brian Daboll as offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach, reuniting him with his former boss Nick Saban.

Saban announced Monday that Daboll will replace Steve Sarkisian, who ran the offense in the national championship game before leaving for the same job with the Atlanta Falcons .

''We are certainly happy to add a coach the caliber of Brian Daboll to our staff,'' Saban said. ''I have known Brian since he worked for us as a (graduate assistant) at Michigan State and he has a fantastic reputation in the coaching profession.

''He brings a tremendous work ethic to the job and has a wealth of football knowledge. Brian is a great teacher of the game, and someone who can relate well to our players.''

Sarkisian had replaced Lane Kiffin , who left after the playoff semifinal game to become head coach at Florida Atlantic. He had been expected to remain through the playoffs.

Daboll takes over an offense led by Southeastern Conference offensive player of the year Jalen Hurts at quarterback and tailbacks Damien Harris and Bo Scarbrough.

Alabama also hired Joe Pannunzio as the Crimson Tide's special teams coordinator and tight ends coach. Former offensive analyst Mike Locksley will be co-offensive coordinator and coach wide receivers.

Daboll's 17-year NFL career included two stints with the Patriots and five Super Bowl titles, including last season. He coached tight ends for two seasons and offensive line for one in his second stint in New England.

Daboll was a graduate assistant under Saban at Michigan State from 1998-99.

He has served as offensive coordinator for Kansas City (2012), Miami (2011) and Cleveland (2009-10).

Daboll also was the New York Jets' quarterbacks coach when Brett Favre came to play for them in 2008.

''I am honored to have the chance to return to the college game and work for coach Saban at Alabama,'' Daboll said. ''He basically gave me my start in coaching as a graduate assistant at Michigan State in the late 1990s and has always been a very important influence on my coaching career.

''It is a tremendous opportunity to work at an institution such as Alabama with its rich tradition and history of sustained success, and I'm very excited to get started.''

Contract details won't be released until formally approved by the university's Board of Trustees.

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