During that time, we also reported that Grantham's candidacy was being championed by current Dolphins and former Spartans head coach Nick Saban. Ultimately, Saban's campaigning on his former assistant coach's behalf went for naught as the Spartans hired Mark Dantonio to replace the deposed John L. Smith.
Now, The OBR has learned, the twosome may be in the unique position of vying for the same position just one month later.
A source with knowledge of the ongoing Alabama head-coaching search has told The OBR that the consulting firm hired by the university has spoken to Grantham on "at least two occasions in the last couple of weeks." At the moment, the source said, the talks are merely exploratory in nature but could become more substantive as the NFL season winds down and the search heats up.
That being said, Saban is far and away the Crimson Tide's top choice to replace Mike Shula, who was fired earlier this month.
Publicly, Saban has brushed off reports that he is interested in the job. Privately, however, he is intrigued by the opportunity of returning to the college game, particularly to a place as tradition-rich as Tuscaloosa.
The source expects Alabama officials to hold off on officially naming a coach until the Dolphins have finished their 2006 season, which is likely to end without a playoff berth for Saban's squad. Until then, the search will consist of compiling a list of viable alternatives should the school be unable to persuade Saban to leave his Miami post.