Jan 8, 2024; Houston, TX, USA; Washington Huskies head coach Kalen DeBoer looks on against the Michigan Wolverines late in the fourth quarter in the 2024 College Football Playoff national championship game at NRG Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Two days after Nick Saban announced his retirement, it appears that Alabama has its man.

According to ESPN’s Chris Low and Mark Schlabach, Washington head coach Kalen DeBoer is in negotiations to become the new head coach of the Crimson Tide. Barring any unforeseen circumstances, all indications are that a deal is expected to be completed.

A native of South Dakota, DeBoer has spent the past two seasons as the Huskies’ head coach, amassing a 25-3 overall record, including a 14-1 mark during the 2023 campaign, which ended with a loss to Michigan in the College Football Playoff Championship Game. Prior to his time in Seattle, the reigning AP Coach of the Year spent two seasons as the head coach of Fresno State and had previously coached Sioux Falls from 2005-2009, winning NAIA national championships in that time.

In nine total seasons as a head coach, DeBoer has compiled a 104–12 overall record and won five conference championships.

In heading to Tuscaloosa, DeBoer will be tasked with replacing arguably the greatest head coach in college football history. After taking over Alabama in 2007, Saban amassed a 201-29 record and won six national championships, establishing the Crimson Tide has college football’s premier program throughout the 2010s.

In addition to DeBoer, Florida State’s Mike Norvell and Texas’ Steve Sarkisian had been considered potential candidates to replace Saban following his retirement.


About Ben Axelrod

Ben Axelrod is a veteran of the sports media landscape, having most recently worked for NBC's Cleveland affiliate, WKYC. Prior to his time in Cleveland, he covered Ohio State football and the Big Ten for outlets including Cox Media Group, Bleacher Report, Scout and Rivals.