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Does Nick Saban make a move for Kendal Briles at Alabama?

As he tries to separate himself from the sexual scandal that occurred at Baylor, maybe a lesson in Nick Saban’s process would do him much good. 

Despite being hired at Florida State to be an offensive coordinator, the situation in Tallahassee could be a little too toxic for Kendal Briles to dive into right now.

Regardless of having control as a play caller, Briles has seen the individuals that have worked under Saban move on to marquee jobs after finding success.

In one season with a quarterbacks’ coach, Alabama fans witnessed the most explosive offense of the Saban era.

Dan Enos mentored Tua Tagovailoa into being a Heisman finalist, consensus All-American and record-setting leader. 

As for Jalen Hurts, he coached the junior into making exceptional improvement. 

Enos’ confidence in Hurts allowed him to come off the bench in the fourth quarter and relief of an injured Tagovailoa to lead the team to a 35-28 win over Georgia in the Southeastern Conference Championship Game in Atlanta.

Seeing how Micahel Locksley has accepted a head coaching job at Maryland, Saban has announced that Enos will handle the play calling in 2019. 

Not saying the Tide needs to call Briles, but should it consider? 

After all, Enos was initially hired at Michigan to coach wide receivers before Saban spurned Jim Harbaugh by pulling the 50-year-old to Tuscaloosa.

At 36-year-old, Briles is old enough to understand that Saban will not put up with foolishness but he is also young enough to learn from the six-time national champion and identify with players.

During his nine seasons (2008-16) at Baylor, Briles served as wide receivers’ coach, offensive recruiting coordinator, passing game coordinator, offensive coordinator and quarterbacks’ coach.  

He worked with five 3,000-yard passers, including three 4,000-yard quarterbacks in Robert Griffin III (4,293 in 2011), Nick Florence (4,309, in 2012) and Bryce Petty (4,200, in 2013).  

Griffin would capture a Heisman Trophy in 2011, following his performance. 

For a while, Briles had the Bears known as “Wide Receiver University.” From Kendall Wright to KD Cannon, Baylor has at least one receiver taken in the first round of the NFL Draft under Briles. He coached 26 players that produced at least 500 yards receiving, with seven of them becoming 1,000-yard targets.

Briles joined Lane Kiffin’s coaching staff at Florida Atlantic in 2017 as assistant head coach, offensive coordinator and quarterbacks’ coach.  

He called plays for an offense that averaged 40.6 points per game, while helping to produce a 1,000-yard running back in Devin Singletary (1,920, 32 touchdowns) and getting the program to 11 wins that year.

Things did not work according to plan for Briles in his return to his Alma mater at University of Houston this season, despite producing four 500-plus yard weapons. 

Does Saban make the move for Briles? We’ll find out after the CFP.

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Stephen M. Smith is the managing editor and senior writer for Touchdown Alabama Magazine.  You can “like” him on Facebook or “follow” him on Twitter, via @CoachingMSmith.

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