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Univ. of Alabama Statement on Shula's Firing

By University of Alabama

Tuscaloosa, AL – UA Director of Athletics Mal Moore announced today (Monday) that Mike Shula will not be retained as head football coach. Shula led the Crimson Tide to a 26-23 record overall in his four seasons (2003-06) as head coach.

The following statement was issued today from Moore regarding the head coaching position of the Alabama football team:

I have informed Mike Shula that he will not be retained as head football coach at the University of Alabama.

Mike and his staff took over our program during a trying period four years ago, and in a number of ways Mike has been an excellent representative of our program. He personally has displayed impeccable character. As both a player and a head coach, Mike has made tremendous contributions to our program, and we always will be grateful for his efforts. He has provided stability for our program through four years of NCAA probation which ends on February 1, 2007.

However, we did not make progress on the field this season and have not been able to maintain the positive momentum necessary to return Alabama football to a place among college football's elite programs.

We will immediately begin a national search for a new head football coach. I am seeking a proven head coach with a proven record of achievement who can reach the level of excellence that all of us desire.

Shula, who was named the 26th head football coach in UA history on May 9, 2003, led Alabama to a 6-6 record this season. The Crimson Tide is bowl-eligible this season, but it has not been determined if the team will receive an invitation to a post-season bowl game.

Joe Kines, UA assistant head coach/defensive coordinator/linebackers coach, will assume the role of interim head coach.

President Robert E. Witt released this statement this morning concerning Shula:

I want to thank Mike Shula for his commitment to The University of Alabama football program. His leadership has provided our program with much-needed stability during the past four years, and we appreciate that, as our coach, he has demonstrated impeccable character and class in every way.

I have complete confidence in Coach Mal Moore as our athletic director, and strongly support his decision to seek new leadership for our football program. I want to thank our players for their hard work and commitment to excellence. And, I want to assure all our fans that we are working hard to return Alabama football to the championship level we all expect.

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