Alabama Head Coach Kalen DeBoer finalizes coaching staff

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(UA Athletics)

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – Alabama head football coach Kalen DeBoer finalized his coaching staff Friday with the hiring of tight ends coach Bryan Ellis, offensive line coach Chris Kapilovic and outside linebackers coach Christian Robinson.

“We were able to also secure three of the finest coaches in the nation to finish out our staff with the hiring of Bryan Ellis, Chris Kapilovic and Christian Robinson,” DeBoer said. “Chis is one of the most respected offensive line coaches in the game with a reputation for recruiting and developing his players. Christian does an outstanding job of building relationships on both the recruiting trail and in his position room, where he gets the absolute best of his players. Ellis is one of the best offensive minds in college football and is a perfect fit for our staff.”

Ellis arrives in Tuscaloosa after two seasons as the offensive coordinator at Georgia Southern. Kapilovic and Robinson come to Alabama from Baylor where Robinson coached inside linebackers in 2023 and Kapilovic was hired in December.

As the offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach at Georgia Southern, Ellis led one of the most dangerous offenses in the nation. The Eagles finished in the top 30 nationally in completion percentage and passing offense. QB Davis Brin led the way as he completed 65.6 percent of his passes for 3,781 yards and 24 touchdowns.

Prior to Georgia Southern, Ellis spent six years at Western Kentucky over two different stints. He was the co-offensive coordinator and inside receivers coach at WKU in 2021 after serving as the quarterbacks coach and offensive coordinator in 2019-20. His first stint at WKU, he was an offensive quality control coach in 2014 before coaching running backs in 2015 and serving as the passing game coordinator and wide receiver coach in 2016.

In 2018, Ellis was the quarterbacks coach at Southern California where he was tasked with developing the successor to Sam Darnold, the No. 3 overall draft pick in the 2017 NFL Draft. He navigated the development of true freshman JT Daniels, just the second true freshman to start a season opener for the Trojans in program history. Prior to his bump to a full-time role with the Trojans, Ellis assisted Clay Helton in the quarterbacks’ room, where the duo worked together with Darnold during the 2017 campaign.

Kapilovic (pronounced kuh-pill-oh-vick) joins the Crimson Tide after spending the last two months at Baylor and the previous four seasons at Michigan State (2020-23). He was MSU’s offensive line coach and run-game coordinator, adding an assistant head coach title for the last three years. He played a major role in leading the Spartans to an elite season in 2021, when they went 11-2 and finished No. 8 in the final USA Today Coaches Poll. His offensive line unit paved the way for Doak Walker Award winner and Walter Camp Player of the Year Kenneth Walker III.

He was the assistant head coach and offensive line coach at Colorado in 2019 after spending seven years at North Carolina. He served in a variety of roles in Chapel Hill, coaching the offensive line while serving as the run-game coordinator in 2012-13, the co-offensive coordinator in 2014-15 and the assistant head coach and offensive coordinator in 2016-18.

He coached the offensive line at Southern Miss (2008-11), Missouri State (2006-07), Alabama State (2001-05) and Phoenix College in 1998. He also served as a graduate assistant at Kansas in 1999-2000.

Robinson joined the Baylor staff after coaching linebackers at Auburn during the 2022 season, following four seasons in the same position at Florida. He also served as a graduate assistant at Mississippi State (2017), Ole Miss (2015-16) and Georgia (2013-14). Robinson has ties to the SEC as he played linebacker at Georgia from 2009-12.

A native of Lawrenceville, Ga., Robinson was named to the American Football Coaches Association 35 Under 35 listing in 2022, highlighting some of the nation’s best up-and-coming coaches under 35.

In 2022, while coaching linebackers and serving as the defensive run-game coordinator with Auburn, Robinson helped Owen Pappoe to a team-leading 91 tackles, including three for a loss with two sacks and two forced fumbles.

Robinson coached linebackers in 2021 for the Gators, helping lead Florida to a fourth-consecutive bowl berth. During his four years with Florida, the Gators ranked fourth nationally in sacks, trailing only Alabama, Clemson and Pittsburgh. The Gators also forced 78 turnovers during Robinson’s four-year tenure, 26th-best in the nation.

While appropriate members of The Board of Trustees have been notified of the proposed terms and conditions of this proposed appointment, the financial terms remain subject to approval by The Board of Trustees.

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