Three former FBS pupils have graduated from Nick Saban's Finishing School for Once and Future Head Coaches, and so it's time for new students to fill the open desks. Butch Jones is now the head coach at Arkansas State, Major Applewhite now the offensive coordinator at South Alabama, and Charlie Strong has reunited with Urban Meyer in Jacksonville.
Out with the old, in with the new.
Ron Cooper will join the Alabama support staff, sources told FootballScoop Monday. AL.com first reported the news.
Cooper is formerly the head coach at Eastern Michigan, Louisville (when U of L was transitioning into Conference USA), Alabama A&M and FIU, going a combined 49-59 in the four jobs. He went 9-13 at EMU in 1993-94, 13-20 at Louisville from 1995-97, and 23-22 with a SWAC title from 1998-01 at Alabama A&M. Cooper went 4-4 as an interim to close the 2016 season.
Following his head coaching run, Cooper became the defensive coordinator at Mississippi State, spent four years on Steve Spurrier's South Carolina staff, and coached defensive backs for LSU, the Tampa Bay Bucs, South Florida, FIU, Texas A&M and Arkansas. He was named FootballScoop's Defensive Backs Coach of the Year for LSU's 2011 SEC champion, BCS runner-up squad.
Cooper last worked on Chad Morris's Hogs staff in 2019.
Given his background, Cooper will likely assist safeties coach Charles Kelly and new cornerbacks coach Jay Valai coach the Crimson Tide's secondary. Of course, everyone knows who really coaches the secondary in Tuscaloosa.
As always, stay tuned to The Scoop for the latest.