Alabama Football Loses Defensive Assistant Coach To Florida
The Alabama Crimson Tide football staff has seen a lot of shuffling during the current offseason cycle. The Tide hired new offensive and defensive coordinators in Tommy Rees and Kevin Steele. Additionally, in January, Nick Saban hired a new inside linebackers coach to replace the departing Pete Golding in Southern Miss's Austin Armstrong.
According to Chris Low of ESPN, Armstong is being targeted to leave his position for the Crimson Tide after only five weeks to join Billy Napier on the staff at the University of Florida as defensive coordinator.
Armstrong would be replacing Patrick Toney who is set to join the Arizona Cardinals.
Armstrong is familiar with Napier after having spent two seasons working for him at Louisiana. The Alabama native worked as a defensive graduate for the Rajun' Cajuns in 2018 and was the inside linebackers coach in 2020.
Armstrong is a fast riser in the coaching ranks. He was the youngest defensive coordinator in FBS with Southern Miss in 2021 and 2022 and additionally gained experience working for Kirby Smart at Georgia in 2019 as a defensive quality control coach.
The move leaves the Tide with an on-field coaching opening on the defensive side of the football that needs to be filled in a hurry. Alabama is scheduled to start spring practice on March 20. There is speculation that incoming defensive coordinator Kevin Steele could serve as inside linebackers coach, allowing Saban flexibility in how he fills the coaching vacancy.
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