The last shadow of doubt about South Alabama taking this football thing seriously vanished the other day when Joey Jones hired Kurt Crain.
It’s about to get a lot hotter in Mobile.
Jones didn’t call the most intense football player I’ve ever known a few weeks back to ask him about joining South Alabama’s first football staff.
Crain called Jones and said he wanted to coach his linebackers.
Jones asked, “When can you come down?”
Crain answered, “I can be there tonight.”
They set an interview for 11 the next morning. Crain, who showed up early and angry at the ball as an all-time great Auburn linebacker, arrived about 10 minutes after 10.
“First interview for a job I’ve ever done in my life,” the 43-year-old Crain said.
That’s how much he wanted to coach again after spending a decade in private business. After getting to watch his three children grow up. After helping his father fight cancer and then, the battle lost, laying him to rest five years ago this month.
If you spent time around Auburn football in the mid-`80s, you remember real-life cattle farmer J.B. Crain. He wore a big hat, carried a strong grip and flashed an easy smile.