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Saban: Ex-USC coach Steve Sarkisian joins staff as analyst

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  • ASSOCIATED PRESS In this Nov. 22, 2014 photo, Southern California head coach Steve Sarkisian gestures during the first half of an NCAA college football game against UCLA, in Pasadena, Calif.

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. >> Former Southern California head coach Steve Sarkisian is joining No. 1 Alabama’s staff as an analyst.

Crimson Tide coach Nick Saban confirmed the hiring today of yet another fired USC coach, joining offensive coordinator Lane Kiffin.

Sarkisian arrived in Tuscaloosa after Alabama’s season-opening, 52-6 win over the 20th-ranked Trojans.

“We talked about it really quite a while ago, and I told him that we’d love to have him as part of the organization,” Saban said. “He’s going through some personal things himself to get himself in a very positive position and wants to continue to do those things in the future and professionally. He loves coaching. I’ve known him for a long time and he’s a very, very good coach.

“To make a contribution to being an analyst here and having some input in some things that we can do better, I think, will be a real positive for our organization.”

USC fired Sarkisian last October after athletic director Pat Haden said he showed up in school in no condition to lead practice following an embarrassing public display earlier at a pep rally where he appeared to be intoxicated while giving a speech. He later sought treatment for alcoholism and has sued USC alleging the school breached his contract and discriminated against him on the basis of a disability.

“We’re going to continue to help him in his program as an organization and we’ll support him when he has an opportunity,” Saban said. “I think he understands the consequences that he deals with professionally if he has any issues or problems. We’re glad to have him as a part of the organization and hopefully he’ll be able to get back on his feet professionally and this will be beneficial to him.”

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