Top-ranked 2024 Alabama quarterback recruit to enter transfer portal after Nick Saban retirement: report


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Nick Saban’s retirement continues to have a major impact on the Alabama football program

Julian Sayin, the top-ranked quarterback of ESPN’s 2024 class, intends to enter the transfer portal, according to ESPN. 

Head coach Nick Saban of the Alabama Crimson Tide reacts to a play during the third quarter against the Georgia Bulldogs in the SEC Championship at Mercedes-Benz Stadium on December 2, 2023, in Atlanta, Georgia. (Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

Sayin enrolled early at Alabama and started classes in January. He will enter the portal as he “came to play for Saban,” according to the report. 

ALABAMA’S DIRECTOR OF ATHLETICS REVEALS NICK SABAN’S ROLE WITH PROGRAM FOLLOWING RETIREMENT

The Crimson Tide have seen several players enter the portal since Saban announced his retirement from coaching after 17 seasons at Alabama. 

On Wednesday, star safety Caleb Downs entered the transfer portal after being named a second-team All-American in his freshman season. 

“Our time is so short, and we don’t have time to look at a lot of unknowns,” Gary Downs, Caleb’s father, told 247 Sports. “It has to be previous relationships with people. We want to try and find a place with stability, the same coach and same coordinators, knowing you have to be prepared for change.

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“He just turned 19. This is a lot for him to process right now. You don’t go into this situation thinking about transferring.”

Caleb Downs prepares for the Rose Bowl

Defensive back Caleb Downs, #2 of the Alabama Crimson Tide, walks to the field before the CFP Semifinal Rose Bowl Game against the Michigan Wolverines at Rose Bowl Stadium on January 1, 2024, in Pasadena, California.  (Ryan Kang/Getty Images)

Kalen DeBoer, the former head coach of the Washington Huskies, was named as Saban’s replacement last Friday. DeBoer had a record of 25-3 in two years at Washington, leading the Huskies to the College Football Playoff national championship game against the Michigan Wolverines. 

He is now tasked with keeping the talent that Saban recruited. 

While Saban will no longer be chasing championships, he will still have a role within the Alabama football program. 

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Nick Saban coaches in the CFP

Alabama head coach Nick Saban reacts after running back Jase McClellan (2) scored a touchdown during the second half of the Rose Bowl CFP NCAA semifinal college football game against Michigan Monday, January 1, 2024, in Pasadena, California.  (AP Photo/Kyusung Gong, File)

“He has an office down the street at Bryant-Denny [Stadium]. He is going to be an adviser for us. He’s been awesome. He and I talked during the coaching search,” Alabama Director of Athletics Greg Byrne told radio host Paul Finebaum on Wednesday. 

“Somebody asked me, ‘Was he involved?’ Man, I’m not very smart. Many people know that. But I’m smart enough to know when you have a chance to have Nick Saban involved with talking about coaching and football and decision-making and leadership, shame on me if I don’t take advantage of that,” he said. 



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