There will be a lot of changes in the 2013 Alabama Crimson Tide. Apart from several star players departing the 2012 national championship Bama team, there is at least one new member of the coaching staff. Jeremy Pruitt has been hired at Florida State. Although Pruitt coached for the Tide through the BCS National Championship Game, he is now a Seminole.
Alabama Coach Nick Saban has pointed out on numerous occasions that he understands and encourages assistant coaches to accept positions in which they advance their careers. Jeremy Pruitt goes from the coach of Bama safeties to defensive coordinator at Florida State.
Saban doesn't say it, but it goes without saying that the Crimson Tide has no problems replacing lost coaches. And because Saban knows hundreds of those in the coaching fraternity, he can identify those coaches. Because Bama is a championship caliber program under Saban, it is no problem to hire high quality replacements.
And that's what Saban has done. One Wednesday -- two days after Alabama defeated Notre Dame to win the national championship -- it was announced that Greg Brown will be the Tide's secondary coach. (Of course, Saban coaches the cornerbacks, which leaves safeties and nickel and dime work for Brown.)
Brown has three decades of coaching experience, including 15 years as an assistant coach in the NFL. He spent the last three seasons in the college ranks at Colorado and Arizona.
"I'm extremely happy to add a coach the caliber of Greg Brown to our staff," said Saban. "Greg has a tremendous amount of college and NFL experience, and his knowledge in the secondary really made him the perfect fit for this position. He will be an outstanding addition to our coaching staff and we look forward to Greg and his family joining our staff at The University of Alabama."
Brown served as the defensive coordinator at the University of Colorado over the last two seasons, his third stint with the Buffaloes. He spent the 2010 season as the co-defensive coordinator at Arizona, helping the Wildcats return to the Top 25 for the first time in over a decade. From 2006-09, Brown was the secondary coach at Colorado and worked as the defensive passing game coordinator during the last three of those seasons.
"It is an honor and an unbelievable opportunity to join the staff at the University of Alabama," said Brown. "I've known and respected Coach Saban for many years and he is the best in the country at what he does. It is the dream of any defensive coach to learn from Coach Saban, especially at a place with Alabama's great tradition and history. I look forward to doing my part to help continue the success with the top college football program in the nation."
Brown spent four seasons (2002-05) with the New Orleans Saints as a defensive assistant under Jim Haslett. In his final year with the Saints, the team ranked third in the NFL in passing defense, allowing just 178 yards per game. Prior to New Orleans, he was the defensive backs coach for the Atlanta Falcons (2000-01) and the San Francisco 49ers (1999).
As secondary coach for the Tennessee Oilers in 1997 and 1998, Brown coached three of the top defensive backs in the NFL: cornerback Samari Rolle and safeties Blaine Bishop and All-Pro Marcus Robertson. He spent the 1995-96 seasons as secondary coach for San Diego, with the Chargers finishing in the top five both years in fewest yards allowed per completion. He coached Rodney Harrison with the Chargers, who went on to become one of the top safeties in the league. In 1994, Brown served as defensive backs coach with Atlanta and the Falcons finished second in the NFL that year with 23 interceptions.
Brown came back to Colorado for a second time in joining Bill McCartney's staff in 1991. He coached the secondary for three years (1991-93), tutoring the only two Jim Thorpe Award winners in school history: cornerbacks Deon Figures (the 1992 winner) and Chris Hudson (1994). Colorado led the nation in pass completion defense and led the Big Eight in pass defense in 1992.
Brown returned to the college game in 1987, coaching the defensive backs for two seasons at the University of Wyoming before doing the same at Purdue for the 1989 and 1990 campaigns.
His first move to the professional ranks came in 1983, joining the staff of the Denver Gold of the United States Football League (USFL). He coached the secondary for the Gold for two seasons before moving on to the NFL for the first time in the summer of 1984, joining the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. For the Bucs, he coached three different positions: defensive quality control (1984), offensive quality control (1985) and the U-backs/tight ends (1986).
He began his coaching career as a graduate assistant at the University of Texas-El Paso, where he worked with the secondary. The following year, 1982, Brown came back to Colorado to work as a defensive coach at Green Mountain High School.
Brown played collegiately at UTEP, lettering twice at cornerback and earning his degree in education in 1980. The Denver native is married to the former Stacie Bible. The couple has two daughters, Hannah and Grace.