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December 7, 2011

McElwain no longer a Memphis candidate

TUSCALOOSA | Jim McElwain has pulled himself out consideration for the head football coaching vacancy at the University of Memphis and is pursuing other head coaching jobs.

Alabama's offensive coordinator interviewed for the Memphis job and emerged as the leading candidate for the position, but elected to take his name out of the running after consideration and consultation with knowledgeable people in the coaching profession, sources familiar with the coaching search told The Tuscaloosa News. Sources indicated there is mutual interest between McElwain and Fresno State, where he coached before coming to Alabama in 2008, and also Colorado State.

Fresno State fired head coach Pat Hill after 15 years at the helm on Sunday. Colorado State dismissed Steve Fairchild after three seasons on the same day.
McElwain, 49, has been part of a program that has gone 47-6 during his tenure, and Alabama will be playing in its second national championship game in three seasons on Jan. 9, 2012.

Alabama's offense ranks third in the Southeastern Conference in scoring (36 points per game) and No. 2 in total offense (433 yards per game). Also Alabama's quarterbacks coach, McElwain has worked with two first-year starters at the position in his four years at Alabama, both with impressive results (Greg McElroy in 2009, AJ McCarron in 2011).

As part of the California State University system, Fresno State cannot post the job opening until 14 days after the position came open.

The Memphis Commecial Appeal newspaper reported Wednesday night that TCU co-offensive coordinator Justin Fuente will be introduced as the school's head coach today.

Alabama defensive coordinator Kirby Smart reportedly interviewed for the vacancy at Texas A&M recently.

Reach Chase Goodbread at chase.goodbread@tuscaloosanews.com or at 205-722-0196. Reach Tommy Deas at tommy.deas@tuscaloosanews.com or at 205-722-0224.

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