Alabama Coach Offered To Quit

Tuesday, September 26th 2000, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (AP) — Alabama coach Mike DuBose, whose team is off to its worst start in a decade, offered to resign 10 days ago. His offer was declined.

The Birmingham News and The Tuscaloosa News reported Tuesday that DuBose made the gesture after Alabama was beaten 21-0 by Southern Mississippi on Sept. 16. DuBose confirmed that he made the offer privately to athletic director Mal Moore in the locker room after the game.

``I did tell him after the Southern Miss game that I would resign, if that's what he thought was best for the university,'' DuBose said. ``That was not intended for an immediate resignation. That was intended for the end of the year, based on what is best for this university and football team.

``It was a statement made in privacy, in the coaches' locker room that I never expected to get out.''

Moore did not accept the resignation offer, which was made with several assistant coaches in the room.

``It's an emotional thing after the game,'' Moore said Monday night. ``In a dressing room like that, it is not an official meeting in that context, and I certainly took it that way.''

The Crimson Tide are 1-3 after two straight losses. A Birmingham newspaper is taking a readers' poll on ``Should DuBose stay or go?'' That's also the hot topic on talk radio and Internet chat rooms, and DuBose is similarly critical of his own performance.

DuBose, at his regular Monday press conference, was openly critical of the job he has done.

``I'm mad at myself, because I'm not doing the job the way the job should be done,'' DuBose said. ``I'm not going to make excuses. We're not playing as well as we're capable of. The staff knows that, the players know that, and that starts with me. I've got to do a better job of coaching.''

The questions are nothing new to DuBose, who also came under fire last September and went on to claim Southeastern Conference Coach of the Year honors.

The Tide (1-1 SEC) could quiet some of the critics with a win Saturday over No. 23 South Carolina (4-0, 2-0). Moore, in his first year as athletic director, said he wouldn't evaluate DuBose until after the season.

``I think my job is to support the team during the season, and we evaluate every team and every coach at the end of their respective season,'' said Moore, a former Tide football player, assistant coach and administrator.

``That will be done here. I'm supporting these guys.''

The Tide were picked No. 3 in The AP Top 25 preseason poll, fell to No. 13 with a loss to UCLA and was out of the poll two weeks later with the loss to Southern Mississippi. Last weekend, Arkansas scored a touchdown and two-point play to rally for a 28-21 win over Alabama.

DuBose said that game was evidence that the Tide are ``in the process'' of coming together.

``I'm sorry it took four games to get into the process of doing it, and that's my fault,'' he said.

``The only thing I can tell you is we're not coaching today any different than we did this time last year. We're not going to coach any different tomorrow.''