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Alabama Names Bill Battle as New Athletic Director

MIAMI GARDENS, FL - JANUARY 07:  The Alabama Crimson Tide mascot runs on the field during the 2013 Discover BCS National Championship game at Sun Life Stadium on January 7, 2013 in Miami Gardens, Florida.  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images
Randy ChambersAnalyst IMarch 22, 2013

Well, that didn't take long.

Alabama has named Bill Battle as the new athletic director, according to the AP, via Yahoo! Sports. Battle was unanimously approved by Alabama trustees and was hand-picked as the top selection by former athletic director Mal Moore.

Moore, who had been the athletic director for Alabama since 1999, was forced to step down from the position earlier this week due to health issues that sent him to the hospital.

As for the update on Moore's health, Alex Scarborough of ESPN has us covered:

Battle and Moore actually have history together, as they both played for the Crimson Tide back in the early in 1960s. Battle spent his time as a defensive end and helped Alabama win the 1961 national championship under legendary head coach Paul Bear Bryant.

After his playing days, Battle then went on to become a coach. He was an assistant coach for Army for a season, and then went on to test the waters with the Tennessee Volunteers. Eventually getting promoted to head coach in 1970, Battle coached the program for seven years, leading the school to a 59-22 record and five consecutive bowl games from 1970-74.

With football obviously still in the blood, Nick Saban has already extended an invite to Battle to come check out the defending national champions' practice, according to Alex Scarborough of ESPN.

Replacing Moore is never going to be an easy task, and frankly, Battle has some big shoes to fill. Moore played a huge role in the football hires, including bringing Saban to Tuscaloosa. He has helped turn Bryant-Denny Stadium into the elite venue it is today, and he has witnessed many other sports bring home championship hardware under his watch.

However, Battle has the respect of many close to the program, and they believe it will remain in good hands with this hire.

According to the AP report, here's what Alabama trustee Finis St. John had to say about the hire: ''incredibly fortunate to have someone available and willing to take this job with the integrity and experience coach Battle brings.''

If he is able to provide anywhere close to what Moore brought to the table, Alabama is sure to be just fine with a change at athletic director.

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