Notre Dame OC Tommy Rees talks to Nick Saban about opening Alabama’s coaching staff – Chicago Tribune

Notre Dame offensive coordinator Tommy Rees has spoken with Alabama coach Nick Saban about filling a vacancy on the Crimson Tide coaching staff and was due to be in Tuscaloosa Thursday, two people familiar with the situation told The Associated Press.

Both spoke on condition of anonymity, as Saban and Alabama did not release details about their search for a replacement for offensive coordinator Bill O’Brien. ESPN first reported on the conversations between Saban and Rees.

O’Brien has spent the last two seasons managing Crimson’s Tide offense and coaching quarterbacks. The former Houston Texans head coach left the team last month to join Patriots coach Bill Belichick in New England as offensive coordinator. O’Brien was a New England assistant before becoming Penn State’s head coach in 2012.

Rees, a former Notre Dame quarterback, has been an assistant at his alma mater since 2017 and the offensive coordinator since 2020. He also spent a year with the San Diego Chargers in 2016 before returning to South Bend, Indiana, as quarterbacks coach.

Rees, 30, was courted by Brian Kelly when he left Notre Dame for LSU and Miami last year but chose to stay and work for freshman Fighting Irish coach Marcus Freeman. Notre Dame finished last season 9-4.

Notre Dame’s offense has been statistically solid under Rees, ranking 45th (last season), 43rd (2021), and 39th (2020) in yards per game nationally.

Alabama will draft a new starting quarterback next season after Heisman Trophy winner Bryce Young declared for the NFL draft.

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