Skip to main content

Sources: Alabama working to hire special teams replacement for Jay Graham

Wednesday Update: Sources tell FootballScoop that Svoboda has been offered and has accepted the position. Saban got his man here.

Nick Saban has identified Drew Svoboda as his top candidate to replace Jay Graham as Alabama's special teams coordinator, sources told FootballScoop on Monday.

The sources indicated Svoboda's hiring is not complete but could become so soon.

Svoboda took the special teams job at Memphis in January following three years at Rice. He entered college football following a successful run as a high school coach in the Houston area, leading Klein Collins to the 6A Division II state semifinals in 2016. He was named the Houston area high school coach of the year following that season.

"We are so excited to add Drew as our special teams coordinator," Memphis head coach Ryan Silverfield upon Svoboda's hiring. "He runs a very similar system to what we have had in place at Memphis. Drew is a very smart and passionate coach who will continue a great tradition here. His connections to Texas will certainly assist us in our recruiting efforts."

From his Memphis bio:

Former walk-on Chris Barnes, who earned second-team all-conference honors while averaging 44.8 yards per punt, combined with grad transfer Adam Nunez to rank fourth nationally in special teams grades from Pro Football Focus. Rice was second in the conference and 18th nationally in ESPN's Specialty Teams Efficiency rankings and their 63.1 rating was the third highest in program history.

They were second in Conference USA in both net punting and punt return defense, ranking 17th and 14th nationally, respectively, in both categories. The duo led C-USA with 27 punts inside the 20. Austin Trammell ranked fourth in C-USA in punt and kick returns, and the Owls ranked fourth in punt returns in the conference with a 9.2-yard average while long snapper Cameron Riddle earned honorable mention All-Conference USA honors.

Alabama is on the market for a special teams coordinator following Jay Graham's resignation last week, two months after taking the job. Graham was also set to coach tight ends for Alabama.

As always, stay tuned to The Scoop for the latest.