The former head coach of the Houston Texans is headed to the land of coaching rehabilitation.
Bill O'Brien will take over the offense at Alabama as current offensive coordinator Steve Sarkisian finished up with the national championship victory. Sarkisian will take over as the head coach at the University of Texas. O'Brien will replace Sarkisian according to Bruce Feldman.
While he was at Penn State, O'Brien authored the 53rd and 43rd overall team in total offense. He was 62nd and 69th in scoring offense those two seasons. His first quarterback was Matt McGloin, who went on to have a solid backup career in the NFL. His second quarterback was Christian Hackenberg where O'Brien coached Hackenberg to the lone solid season of his college or pro football career. He also coached Allen Robinson at Penn State as well.
Nick Saban has been the place to go to rebuild coaching reputations.
Sarkisian is his most recent example but also on this past year's staff was Butch Jones, who is now at Arkansas State. Former Houston head coach Major Applewhite is on Saban's staff. Current Oregon head coach Mario Cristobal popped through Alabama after his failures at FIU.
The two most famous examples of his phenomenon are Lane Kiffin and Brian Daboll. Daboll spent just one season with Saban while winning a national championship after replacing Kiffin. Kiffin famously wasn't allowed to coach the national championship game for Saban and went to Florida Atlantic to be the head coach. He is now the Ole Miss head coach.
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Daboll, of course, is one of the hottest coaching candidates in the NFL right now with his success in Buffalo. Houston has yet to interview him.
Could Bill O'Brien coexist with Nick Saban in an attempt to shine up a resume that has been muddied largely by his own doing? History says that under Saban, that’s exactly how it can work.