Sal Sunseri Takes Job At Tennessee

Last year, Alabama Assistant Coach Sal Sunseri spoke to a Red Elephant Club, where he was introduced as "Vinnie Sunseri's father." Sal won't have to carry that burden in his next position.



Alabama has lost its second coach from the 2011 staff as Sal Sunseri, who was the Crimson Tide's assistant head coach for defense and outside linebackers coach, has been named defensive coordinator at Tennessee.

Previously Alabama had lost Offensive Coordinator and Quarterbacks Coach Jim McElwain to Colorado State, where he is the new head coach.

Crimson Tide Coach Nick Saban has a history of losing coaches to better jobs. The "worked for Nick Saban" line on a resume pays dividends for football coaches. And Saban has always endorsed the decisions of his assistants who better their situations.

At Tennessee, Sunseri will be working for a head coach who was previously an assistant under Saban, Derek Dooley.

Saban said, "Sal is an outstanding coach and really did an excellent job with each and every responsibility he had while he was here at the University of Alabama. Although we hate to see Sal go, we understand this is an opportunity for him to grow in this profession and take on the role of defensive coordinator. We appreciate all that he did in terms of his time and his dedication in contributing to the success we've had at Alabama.

"We've worked together a total of four years, including the last three seasons here, and we appreciate all Sal did to improve the program. We wish Sal and Rox the best and I'm sure he'll do a great job as he always has."

Sunseri's oldest son, Tino, was quarterback at Pittsburgh this year. His youngest son, Vinnie Sunseri, was an outstanding performer as a freshman for the national championship Crimson Tide team his father helped coach.

Vinnie said, "I love my dad. This is a great opportunity and I'm really happy for him. In terms of my status, The University of Alabama is the place for me and that is what my heart and my mind tell me. This is my home and there is no place else I'd rather be. I'll root for him every day of the year except for the third Saturday in October."

Although not always, the third Saturday in October is the traditional date of the Alabama-Tennessee game. That will be the case in 2012 when Bama goes to Knoxville on October 20.

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