Windham Wrap-up: Former Saban Assistants Impacting College Football

Windham Wrap-up: Former Saban Assistants Impacting College Football

Windham Wrap-up: Former Saban Assistants Making Big Impact Across College Football

From Mario Cristobal to Kirby Smart to Lane Kiffin, some of Nick Saban's former assistant coaches are filling up the top-25 rankings.
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One of the biggest storylines to come out of week two from college football was Oregon going on the road and upsetting Ohio State. It was a massive win for the Pac 12, made a big impact on the CFP picture (not to say that Ohio State is out of the race because they’re certainly not, especially if they run the table and win the Big 10) and it was a statement win for the Oregon head coach Mario Cristobal. 

That name should sound familiar for Crimson Tide fans. He was an assistant at Alabama from 2013-2016 and probably the best recruiter in the country at that time. After the big win, Oregon now sits at No. 4 in the AP Poll.

Alabama is No. 1 where they’ve been throughout this whole season, and Cristobal and Oregon are one of three teams in the top-seven coached by a former Nick Saban assistant. 

 So that means four of the top seven teams in college football are either coached by Saban or one of his assistants. The other teams besides Oregon are Georgia and Kirby Smart at No. 2 and Jimbo Fisher and Texas A&M at No. 7.

Also in the top-25 are the Ole Miss Rebels and Lane Kiffin, who are sitting at No. 17 after a 2-0 start. With a small sample size of games, it seems that Kiffin has the Rebel defense much improved from last season. A big matchup between Ole Miss and Alabama is looming for Oct. 2 in Bryant-Denny Stadium.

Last Thursday on his radio show, Saban was asked by a caller if he would still be coaching at Alabama when he was 80. The coach kind of side-stepped the question, but it is a ever-present question in the back of Alabama fans' minds. Who will replace Saban when he is done at Alabama?

Obviously, Alabama has the resources and reputation to go out and get pretty much whoever they want, but the question is who do they want. A million things can and will change between now and the time Saban retires, but as I look at the AP Poll this week, I see several coaches with ties to Alabama who are building strong résumés for when that time comes. 

One of the biggest storylines to come out of week two from college football was Oregon going on the road and upsetting Ohio State. It was a massive win for the Pac 12, made a big impact on the CFP picture (not to say that Ohio State is out of the race because they’re certainly not, especially if they run the table and win the Big 10) and it was a statement win for the Oregon head coach Mario Cristobal. 

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