The 2014 season for the Alabama Crimson Tide was one of the best offensive seasons they have had in their rich 100 plus year history. The one secret ingredient that was thought to help boost that increase in offense was offensive coordinator Lane Kiffin.
He had been rumored to possibly be on the move this offseason, but late last week it was announced that Kiffin would return as Alabama’s offensive coordinator for the 2015 season.
Kiffin helped turn an Alabama team with serious offensive questions into a team that was one of the nation’s best in both the run and pass game. His offensive philosophy helped turn wide receiver Amari Cooper into a Heisman Trophy finalist in 2014. Kiffin also helped turn a quarterback controversy between Blake Sims and Jacob Coker into a no brainer with the confidence he installed into Sims.
He helped guide Sims through his first year as a starter and made it look effortlessly at times. Kiffin had the ability to design a game plan that made the game easy for Sims and allowed him to succeed like few Alabama quarterbacks have done before.
Kiffin will now bring that magic formula back to the Crimson Tide in 2015 as the roster will see some major changes on the offensive side. Alabama will lose Sims to graduation and Cooper to the NFL Draft. The 2015 season will require more adjusting and making things simple for a new group of guys, but at the college level that is expected from all coaches.
Kiffin’s return to Alabama was brought into question because of rumors that he may take the San Francisco 49er’s offensive coordinator job.
The 49er’s are in the process of hiring a new coaching staff after Jim Harbaugh took the head coaching job at Michigan a few weeks ago. Kiffin was a hot coaching commodity after his success with Alabama’s offense last season and the 49ers took a shot at going after him.
Kiffin and the 49er’s situation didn’t work out and to the delight of many; he will be back at Alabama for a second year. I feel it is a great thing for the Crimson Tide getting Kiffin back because of how he opened up the Alabama offense, especially in the passing game.
He brought an offense to a Nick Saban coached team that we haven’t ever seen before. Saban and Kiffin, once thought to be a coaching misfit, actually seemed to be a match made in heaven at times. The 2015 season for Alabama will be interesting, but with the return of Kiffin it should make the transition of changing quarterbacks once again in Tuscaloosa a little easier.