If Alabama doesn’t win the national championship next month, I wonder if Gene Stallings has provided the template for Tide regret with this:
“If I were Alabama, as long as they have (Alabama head coach Nick) Saban, defensively, they are going to be fine,” Stallings told The Opening Kickoff on WNSP-FM 105.5 in Mobile, Alabama. “I’d let Kirby go. He works to get a head coaching job. He’s got it. He can be there physically, but mentally, he’s putting his (Georgia) staff together. He’s recruiting. … You might as well let him go.”
Stallings said his 1996 Alabama team was in a similar situation. Stallings announced his retirement after a 24-23 win over Auburn in the Iron Bowl.
“It happened to me when I was at Alabama,” Stallings explained. It’s not a matter of leaving but when they announced it. Mike DuBose, who was on my staff, was going to replace me. I asked the president not announce it until after the championship game. He announced it on like Monday or Tuesday. … Well, Mike was excited about getting the position. He was concerned about putting his staff together and what he was going to do, so I don’t think we did a very good job, defensively, in that particular game.”
The Crimson Tide lost to then-No. 4 Florida 45-30.
Damned if you go; damned if you stay.