TUSCALOOSA | University of Alabama offensive coordinator Jim McElwain has accepted an offer to become the next head football coach at Colorado State, a source close to the situation told Tidesports.com.
McElwain, who has headed up UA's offense since the 2008 season, has been a hot commodity in the coaching-search circles this offseason. Colorado State has been looking for a head coach since firing Steve Fairchild a little more than a week ago after three straight 3-9 seasons.
McElwain, 49, has been part of a program that has gone 47-6 during his tenure. UA won the 2009 national championship and will be playing for the national title in the BCS National Championship Game next month in New Orleans with the chance to win another national title.
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).
Fairchild's salary at Colorado State was $700,000. McElwain got a $100,000 raise in March to up his salary to $510,000. He is in line to receive a $81,600 bonus for Alabama making it to a BCS bowl game.
It is unclear if McElwain will coach in the Jan. 9, 2012, BCS National Champion Game in New Orleans.
McElwain interviewed for head coaching vacancies at Memphis and Fresno State, but took his name out of the running for both jobs.
Reach Tommy Deas at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 205-722-0224.