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Nick Saban uncertain on Lane Kiffin's future with Tide


MOBILE, Ala. -- Alabama coach Nick Saban had nothing specific to say on Tuesday about reports of offensive coordinator Lane Kiffin being a candidate for the same role with the San Francisco 49ers, but the Crimson Tide coach certainly made it sound as if Kiffin has been courted by someone.

"I can't say (Kiffin will return) right now because I know Lane is committed to us right now, and he's doing the best he can to help recruit and do the things we need to do to have a better team next year," Saban said at Senior Bowl practice, according to "We're hopeful that will continue."

Alabama's offense broke numerous team and individual school records in Kiffin's first season as offensive coordinator, leading the Crimson Tide to a College Football Playoff berth with a new starter at quarterback (Blake Sims) and a new left tackle to protect him (freshman Cameron Robinson). The 49ers are reportedly courting Kiffin to coordinate their offense, an opportunity that could be attractive to Kiffin given his ties to the West Coast.

Saban said there is no shortage of opportunities for his staff at this time of year.

"I think all of our coaches this time of the year have opportunities and I think guys work hard so they can get opportunities, and if they are better opportunities that serve them better professionally, we're very supportive in our guys getting promotions and doing those types of things," Saban said.

Alabama's offense averaged 484.5 yards per game under Kiffin this season (17th in the NCAA) and 36.9 points (15th).

Kiffin said in December prior to the Sugar Bowl that his intention is to stay at Alabama in 2015. Whether the 49ers are the most likely candidate to sway Kiffin after just one season at Alabama is unclear, but the former Oakland Raiders coach clearly has an option or two.

* Follow Chase Goodbread on Twitter **@ChaseGoodbread*.

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