Report: SEC discouraged Alabama from hiring Hugh Freeze
Nelson Chenault-USA TODAY Sports

Hugh Freeze remains without a job as spring practices wind down across the country, but if Nick Saban had gotten his way, the former Ole Miss coach would reportedly be on the staff at Alabama.

Sources told John Talty and Matt Zenitz of AL.com that Alabama was one of at least five schools that contacted Freeze regarding an on-field role this offseason, with the Crimson Tide offering him a job as co-offensive coordinator and position coach.

Shortly after that offer, however, SEC commissioner Greg Sankey reportedly told Freeze and Alabama that he wasn't on board with the move and would prefer Freeze remained off the radar for the time being.

Freeze resigned as Rebels coach after administrators identified a "pattern of personal misconduct" that included making phone calls to a number associated with a female escort service. Ole Miss also received a two-year bowl ban, scholarship reductions, and had to vacate wins after the NCAA Committee on Infractions ruled the program had "fostered an unconstrained culture of booster involvement in football recruiting."

A conference bylaw gives the commissioner oversight of schools' hiring decisions. SEC programs must consult Sankey before hiring a coach who's been involved with a Level I, Level II, or major infraction, and the NCAA's ruling on the Ole Miss program under Freeze fits that description.

Alabama eventually hired Josh Gattis from Penn State as its co-offensive coordinator and receivers coach, and promoted Mike Locksley to offensive coordinator as well.

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Report: SEC discouraged Alabama from hiring Hugh Freeze
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