Saban reported to have filled D-Line coach vacancy

Craig Kuligowski

Alabama is expected to soon have a new defensive line coach.

Kuligowski, who spent 15 seasons (2001-15) with Missouri and produced five first-round NFL Draft picks during his tenure, left Columbia and joined Miami's coaching staff after Barry Odom was named the Tigers' head coach and made a decision to not retain the longtime assistant of Gary Pinkel on his defensive staff.

Kuligowski coached two seasons at UM under Mark Richt after spending the previous 15 years at Missouri, and his work with the Hurricanes' front four was lauded.

Kuligowski replaces Karl Dunbar, who left Tuscaloosa to head back to the National Football League as the defensive line coach of the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Patridge spent the 2017 season as the Defensive Line Coach at Pittsburgh.

Miami released the following statement Monday: "The University of Miami announced Monday night that assistant head coach/defensive line coach Craig Kuligowski is leaving the program to pursue other opportunities".

For Nick Saban, the rich only get richer as the sport's preeminent football force adds arguably the best developmental defensive line coach in the country.

While there has been no official word on the next stop for Kuligowski, 49, Miami defensive end Chad Thomas, for one, was buying the "he's going to Alabama" reports. While Kuligowski is highly respected as a coach, he is not universally known as a strong recruiter.

While his coaching abilities are unquestioned, Kuligowski struggled at times on the recruiting trail at Miami. Kuligowski also reportedly interviewed with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers for their vacant defensive line coaching position. In 2014, the Tigers led the SEC with a school-record 44 sacks led by defensive ends Shane Ray, a first-round pick by Denver, and Markus Golden, who was selected in the third round by Arizona.

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