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Groh Officially Joins Bama Staff

The son of a former Nick Saban colleague has been hired to replace Curt Cignetti on Alabama’s coaching staff.  Mike Groh — son of former Virginia head coach Al Groh — was officially hired yesterday.  He served as Louisville’s quarterbacks coach last year… which followed a year as a grad assistant at Bama in 2009.

“We are excited to have Mike join our staff,” Saban said.  “He did an outstanding job here a year ago and when he left, he was one that I hoped we could bring back to Alabama at some point.”

Groh will take over Cignetti’s duties as wide receivers coach and recruiting coordinator.  Cignetti left last month to become head coach at Indiana University of Pennsylvania.

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Bama Rumor Mill: Croom And Groh Names Heating Up

One name familiar to SEC fans and another — familiar to Nick Saban — appear to be rising to the top of Alabama’s search for a receivers coach.  Former Mississippi State head coach Sylvester Croom has already interviewed for the job while Louisville’s Mike Groh remains a possibility, too.

Croom is a former Alabama player.  Everyone remembers the dust-up when Bama hired Mike Shula as its head coach instead of Croom in 2003.  Croom then took over at Mississippi State, got in a couple of wins over the Tide (one over Shula, one over Saban), took the Bulldogs to a bowl game… and was then fired when his team took a step backwards in 2008.  He is currently the running backs coach for the St. Louis Rams.

Groh is the quarterbacks coach at Louisville.  His father is Al Groh, the former Virginia head coach and longtime NFL assistant.  The elder Groh is part of the Bill Belichick coaching tree — as is Saban — as both worked together under Belichick with the Cleveland Browns in early 1990s.

The Tuscaloosa News speculates that Saban’s final hire might not necessarily be the team’s receivers coach in 2011.  Saban could shuffle his staff and turn the receivers over to another coach already on his staff.  Croom has never coached receivers during his lengthy career.

On a sidenote, Croom’s official photo from MSU (at left) is still the most bad-ass shot of an SEC coach we have ever seen.

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