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February 19, 2013Miami Assistant Head Coach Mario Cristobal, formerly the head coach at FIU before being fired and subsequently hired by Al Golden, has agreed to become Associate Head Coach and offensive line coach at Alabama.
The hiring is expected to be announced officially by Alabama later today.
Cristobal made the decision Tuesday morning after a second wave of talks/negotiations all day Monday and taking the night to sleep on the move.
The issues which appear to be leading Cristobal to Alabama are twofold: Money and the career implications of working as a close assistant to Nick Saban, the most successful coach in college football.
Sources told CaneSport that the salary figure being offered to Cristobal is more than double and with bonuses could end up being almost triple what he was scheduled to be paid at Miami.
Saban disciples also are viewed favorably by athletic directors around the country. Cristobal has made it no secret that his goal is to get back to being a head coach as soon as possible.
The move to Alabama was agonizing because it meant leaving Miami. Cristobal has never made his affection for working at The U a secret, the reason he chose to join Golden's staff and shun several NFL offers over the past month.
But the Alabama offer was too sweet for Golden and Miami to overcome. The school would have had to come up with a package for Cristobal unlike any that it has ever crafted for an assistant coach.
Golden will look to move quickly to hire a replacemnent for Cristobal with spring practice set to begin March 2.