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Former Alabama LB adds Super Bowl champion to Crimson Tide’s open DC position discussion

Alabama head coach Nick Saban looks onto the field during the Crimson Tide's matchup against Texas A&M for 2022.
Marvin Gentry - USA Today Sports

Nick Saban is taking his time to select the next defensive coordinator for Alabama football.

After five years with Pete Golding, Saban wants to make sure the next hire is one to restore dominance on defense.

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Jeremy Pruitt is the favorite to get the job, but a former Alabama linebacker added a name that Saban should consider if Pruitt does not return to the Crimson Tide. Marvin Constant, a 1999 Southeastern Conference Champion, says Deshea Townsend fits perfectly in Tuscaloosa as a defensive play-caller if Saban cannot get Pruitt. He provided his reasoning on The Bama Standard.

Alabama NEEDS TO HIRE This Alum if Jeremy Pruitt Isn’t Chosen as Defensive Coordinator!

“He is so intelligent, and he knows the game so well,” Constant said about Townsend. “In the NFL, he could play any position in the secondary. He knows the ins and outs of every offense, and he’s a guy that will truly motivate our kids. The man played every position in the secondary. When I say that man knows defensive and offensive football better than anybody I know. … I can have a conversation with Shea about breaking something down and before I get through what I am saying, he has already said back to me what needs to happen defensively to stop what their offense is doing. He is a great defensive mind and is someone these kids will relate to. He is a high-energy guy these kids will relate to. Not only did he play at Alabama, but he also won a Super Bowl.”

Townsend does not have coordinator experience, but he is a two-time Super Bowl champion for the Pittsburgh Steelers.

He played 13 seasons (1998-10) in the National Football League with the Steelers and Indianapolis Colts. Townsend was known for his coverage ability and pass-rush moves as a defensive back. He recorded 21 interceptions and 15.5 sacks in his career.

Townsend played at the University of Alabama from 1995 to 1997 under Eugene “Gene” Stallings and Mike DuBose.

He totaled seven career interceptions and was a three-time All-SEC selection.

Townsend has coached defensive backs for the Arizona Cardinals, Tennessee Titans, New York Giants, Chicago Bears, and Jacksonville Jaguars. He also has a footprint in the SEC, coaching cornerbacks at Mississippi State University from 2013 to 2015.

Townsend mentored several Bulldog cornerbacks to the NFL, including Jamerson Love and Taveze Calhoun. 

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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.

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