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Alabama OC Bill O’Brien weighs in on criticism of his play-calling

Bill O'Brien gives instructions at practice
Photo by Crimson Tide photos

Nick Saban allows his coordinators to speak to reporters twice a year during football season for Alabama.

One of the moments happened Wednesday as offensive coordinator Bill O’Brien had his press conference. The 53-year-old is finishing his second season with the Crimson Tide. He was hired in January 2021 to replace the departed Steve Sarkisian. 

RELATED: Alabama football continues strong efforts in third Sugar Bowl practice

O’Brien spent seven years (2014-20) in the National Football League as head coach of the Houston Texans before taking an opportunity to come to Alabama. He coached two seasons (2012-13) at Penn State. O’Brien has come under much criticism from Alabama fans because of his play-calling. Fans and national media feel he has not been creative enough and has not taken advantage of all the athletes on the field. People saw Alabama’s offenses under Lane Kiffin and Sarkisian and think O’Brien has left little to be desired. However, the former NFL head coach does not share the same sentiment. The Tide has averaged 40 points per game in two seasons under O’Brien. His contract expires after Feb. 28, 2023, but O’Brien loves it in Tuscaloosa with Saban.

No one knows what his future holds, but O’Brien has not heard any of the criticism.

He stated Alabama has been productive under his watch.

O’Brien and the offense will battle Kansas State on Saturday in the Sugar Bowl.

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Stephen M. Smith is the managing editor and senior writer for Touchdown Alabama Magazine.  You can “like” him on Facebook or “follow” him on Twitter, via @CoachingMSmith. 

Stephen Smith is a 2015 graduate of the University of Alabama. He is a senior writer and reporter for Touchdown Alabama Magazine. He has covered Alabama football for 15 years and his knowledge and coverage of the Crimson Tide's program have made him among the most respected journalist in his field. Smith has been featured on ESPN and several other marquee outlets as an analyst.

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