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*** Alabama announces Brown hired as secondary coach

  • Chris Walsh

    Here's the release:

    University of Alabama head coach Nick Saban announced Wednesday the hiring of Greg Brown as Alabama’s secondary coach. Brown has three decades of coaching experience, including 15 years as an assistant coach in the NFL. He spent the last three seasons in the college ranks at Colorado and Arizona. Brown takes over for Jeremy Pruitt, who was recently named the defensive coordinator at Florida State.

    “I’m extremely happy to add a coach the caliber of Greg Brown to our staff,” said head coach Nick Saban. “Greg has a tremendous amount of college and NFL experience, and his knowledge in the secondary really made him the perfect fit for this position. He will be an outstanding addition to our coaching staff and we look forward to Greg and his family joining our staff at the University of Alabama.”

    Brown served as the defensive coordinator at the University of Colorado over the last two seasons, his third stint with the Buffaloes. He spent the 2010 season as the co-defensive coordinator at Arizona, helping the Wildcats return to the Top 25 for the first time in over a decade. From 2006-09, Brown was the secondary coach at Colorado and worked as the defensive passing game coordinator during the last three of those seasons.

    “It is an honor and an unbelievable opportunity to join the staff at the University of Alabama,” said Brown. “I’ve known and respected Coach Saban for many years and he is the best in the country at what he does. It is the dream of any defensive coach to learn from Coach Saban, especially at a place with Alabama’s great tradition and history. I look forward to doing my part to help continue the success with the top college football program in the nation.”

    Brown spent four seasons (2002-05) with the New Orleans Saints as a defensive assistant under Jim Haslett. In his final year with the Saints, the team ranked third in the NFL in passing defense, allowing just 178 yards per game. Prior to New Orleans, he was the defensive backs coach for the Atlanta Falcons (2000-01) and the San Francisco 49ers (1999).

    As secondary coach for the Tennessee Oilers in 1997 and 1998, Brown coached three of the top defensive backs in the NFL: cornerback Samari Rolle and safeties Blaine Bishop and All-Pro Marcus Robertson. He spent the 1995-96 seasons as secondary coach for San Diego, with the Chargers finishing in the top five both years in fewest yards allowed per completion. He coached Rodney Harrison with the Chargers, who went on to become one of the top safeties in the league. In 1994, Brown served as defensive backs coach with Atlanta and the Falcons finished second in the NFL that year with 23 interceptions.

    Brown came back to Colorado for a second time in joining Bill McCartney's staff in 1991. He coached the secondary for three years (1991-93), tutoring the only two Jim Thorpe Award winners in school history: cornerbacks Deon Figures (the 1992 winner) and Chris Hudson (1994). Colorado led the nation in pass completion defense and led the Big Eight in pass defense in 1992.

    Brown returned to the college game in 1987, coaching the defensive backs for two seasons at the University of Wyoming before doing the same at Purdue for the 1989 and 1990 campaigns.

    His first move to the professional ranks came in 1983, joining the staff of the Denver Gold of the United States Football League (USFL). He coached the secondary for the Gold for two seasons before moving on to the NFL for the first time in the summer of 1984, joining the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. For the Bucs, he coached three different positions: defensive quality control (1984), offensive quality control (1985) and the U-backs/tight ends (1986).

    He began his coaching career as a graduate assistant at the University of Texas-El Paso, where he worked with the secondary. The following year, 1982, Brown came back to Colorado to work as a defensive coach at Green Mountain High School.

    Brown played collegiately at UTEP, lettering twice at cornerback and earning his degree in education in 1980. The Denver native is married to the former Stacie Bible. The couple has two daughters, Hannah and Grace.

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    Christopher Walsh covers Alabama football for BamaOnline, 247Sports, and is the author of 18 books.

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  • Seems like he has a great pedigree as a teacher on the defensive side of the ball, especially in the secondary. The guy has had success at every level.

    Before anyone flames me for these next comments, please understand that I am playing "devil's advocate" with these thoughts and continue reading through to my last comments!

    The big question mark for me is how he fills Pruitt's shoes with regard to recruiting. Considering his age, the fact that he hasn't had to recruit against the likes of opposing coaches in the SEC, and his lack of experience in the Southeast, it would seem to be TBD if he can recruit at the same level at Pruitt. This aspect of coaching at Bama is very important.

    On the flip side, he can obviously tout direct correlation between his coaching and very successful college and NFL DBs which should only help his recruiting efforts.

    I guess when it all boils down to it, we must TTP! If Coach Saban thinks he's good enough, then he's good enough for me!

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    "Nobody makes me bleed my own blood, nobody!"

  • Great hire... we have some some young guys that need some development. Really excited about what Brown can do for young Bradley Sylve. And then with Smith, Cook, and Averett coming in, we need another old vet DB coach on the staff. We will probably replace coach williams with another young recruiter type...

  • scottchap

    He is not being hired to "fill pruitt shoes". Just as yeldon won't fill lacy shoes and lacy didnt fill Trent's.

    Coach saban has talked on this topic a few times. He doesn't replace a person with the same person. Everybody has their own strengths and weaknesses. Coach saban will utilize coach brown's strengths to make us a better team.

    In some cases with players and coaches it might mean that other people have to take on new roles in order to replace the strengths of the former person. With that said the strengths of the new person will most likely make us better as a whole.

    It's also worth noting that every person that saban has put on his staff has had success in recruiting in whatever role saban has asked. A few coaches have left and have been unable to have the same success. My guess is that coach saban micromanages the recruiting process so much so that everyone is doing virtually the same things. Hence everyone having similar success.

    This post was edited by scottchap 15 months ago

  • “It is an honor and an unbelievable opportunity to join the staff at the University of Alabama,” said Brown. “I’ve known and respected Coach Saban for many years and he is the best in the country at what he does. It is the dream of any defensive coach to learn from Coach Saban, especially at a place with Alabama’s great tradition and history. I look forward to doing my part to help continue the success with the top college football program in the nation.” .......said Brown.

    Well, he knows how to talk the talk. Welcome Coach Brown!

  • Coach hired him because he is teachable and has all the tools to be a great coach....Good hire.

  • Great thoughts, Scott! Makes sense and I would tend to agree with that line of thinking too. Coming from a business background, you have to evaluate your personnel as a manager and make adjustments to what people are in what seat on the bus. Depending on the passengers, you sometimes have to shuffle the deck to get the right people in the right spot!

    In Saban we trust!

  • From a Coaching Standpoint, sounds like a great hire. I just hope he can do a great job Recruiting.

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