Kalen DeBoer to Alabama: Audio leaked from final meeting with Washington team
Kalen DeBoer began his week by leading Washington into the College Football Playoff National Championship. And he ended it by taking over as the leading man of the Alabama football program.
It was a tumultuous and emotional week for all involved. Washington had dreams of a title, but those were dashed by Michigan in the title game, 34-13. When Nick Saban retired on Wednesday, DeBoer was immediately linked to the position. On Friday, he was officially announced as Saban’s replacement.
Washington held a team meeting on Friday, where DeBoer told his players he was leaving. That meeting was recorded and the audio has made its way online, via Realdawg.
In the nearly nine-minute speech, DeBoer bares his heart to the Huskies and tries to explain his decision-making process.
“Great programs are bigger than any one person,” he tells the team. “It’s bigger than any one player. It’s bigger than any coach.”
Since DeBoer’s move to Tuscaloosa, more than 10 Huskies have decided to jump into the transfer portal, including starting defensive backs Jabbar Muhammad and Mishael Powell as well as Will Rogers, the expected starter at quarterback in 2024.
DeBoer is also taking offensive coordinator Ryan Grubb, offensive line coach Scott Huff, tight ends coach Nick Sheridan, and wideout coach JaMarcus Shephard with him to Alabama. That’s in addition to key off-field staffers Jarret McElwain and Courtney Morgan.