Another member of Alabama’s 2016 coaching staff is going to be a head coach.
According to a report from footballscoop.com, Louisiana-Lafayette is going to hire Arizona State offensive coordinator Billy Napier as the school’s next coach. He will replace Mark Hudspeth, who has joined Joe Moorhead’s staff at Mississippi State.
Napier was Alabama’s wide receivers coach from 2013-16 and left last season to join Todd Graham’s staff at Arizona State. Graham was fired at Arizona State last month and replaced by former NFL coach and ESPN personality Herm Edwards.
Napier is the fourth Alabama assistant from the 2016 staff to become a head coach. He joins Lane Kiffin, the Alabama offensive coordinator who led Florida Atlantic to a conference championship in his first season at FAU; Jeremy Pruitt, the defensive coordinator who was hired at Tennessee; and Mario Cristobal, who was the offensive line coach at Alabama. He went from being Oregon’s co-offensive coordinator to becoming the head coach after Willie Taggart left to become coach at Florida State.
The Nick Saban coaching tree continues to get stronger, especially when you add that Kirby Smart led Georgia to the College Football Playoff in his second season as coach. The Bulldogs take on Oklahoma in the Rose Bowl, while Alabama takes on Clemson in the Sugar Bowl. Both of those semifinal games will be played on New Year’s Day.
Napier will make a return trip to Tuscaloosa next season as his team takes on the Crimson Tide on Sept. 29. He will also face off against Mississippi State, which plays Louisiana-Lafayette on Sept. 15.