750 The Game Staff
Nick Saban retired Wednesday after seventeen seasons and seven national championships at the University of Alabama.
Names of candidates to replace him at Alabama immediately floated around the internet. Oregon head coach Dan Lanning was reported by Action Network’s Brett McMurphy to be the “top target” to replace Saban in Tuscaloosa.
BetOnline lists Lanning as the 3/1 favorite to take the Alabama job. Clemson’s Dabo Swinney and Ole Miss’ Lane Kiffin are also in the mix, as is Washington’s Kalen DeBoer, listed at 6/1 odds.
“Is Dan Lanning – rumored to be the target by some out there – is Dan Lanning’s commitment and his verbal pledge to Oregon fans and the University of Oregon, are they about to get the test?,” asked John Canzano on Wednesday on 750 The Game.
“I’m interested to see how it goes down when it comes to Dan Lanning. I’m curious to see how this all unfolds. Because he was so strong in his comments not that long ago, and he’s talked to multiple people about his desire to stay at Oregon.”
Lanning’s comments pledging his loyalty to Oregon came after his name circulated for the Texas A&M opening upon Jimbo Fisher’s firing in November.
“A lot of Oregon fans probably thought immediately about Dan Lanning and his commitment to Oregon,” continued Canzano. “And I’m sure that Washington fans are right now looking at Kalen DeBoer going hey wait a minute. Is this a guy that Alabama could come after.
“Now, Alabama athletic director Greg Byrne, he’s a friend of this show, I know him well, I reached out to him right after I heard the news, I’m sure he’s getting bombarded by people who are reaching out to him trying to figure out what’s going on with Alabama football. I wanted to know if he was surprised by this. I have to think Nick Saban signaled this to his athletic director at some point.”
Canzano says the power of Oregon’s NIL influence and Division Street NIL collective will play a role in trying to keep Lanning committed to UO.
“I look at Oregon’s collective, if you are going to be playing in this world of NIL, Oregon, among the four teams that are leaving the Pac-12 to go to the Big Ten, Oregon I think is the most ideally suited to be able to recruit the kind of offensive and defensive linemen that it will take to get by Michigan, to get by Ohio State, and compete for a national championship.
I think UCLA is in real trouble. I think Washington could be in real trouble. I don’t know if it’s sustainable what Kalen DeBoer has. And for that reason, I’m looking more at Washington and Kalen DeBoer as a flight risk. Doesn’t have his AD anymore. Just played for a championship. Michael Penix is leaving. Like if you’re Kalen DeBoer and you’re buying and selling stocks, this might be a good time to sell if you’re Kalen DeBoer.”
Listen to Canzano’s initial reaction to the Nick Saban and Pete Carroll departures at the start of the show podcast below.
John Canzano delivers the Bald Faced Truth afternoons 3-6 p.m. exclusively in Portland on 750 The Game.