Nick Saban on Mal Moore: "I'm gonna miss him"

Nick Saban ended his news conference Wednesday talking about Mal Moore stepping down as athletics director at Alabama, saying "I'm going to miss him." (

Alabama head coach Nick Saban spoke for a few minutes at his news conference Wednesday to talk about his friend and boss in Mal Moore, who announced earlier in the day that he would be stepping down as the Crimson Tide athletics director due to health concerns.

Saban was quick to credit Moore with all the success his program has experienced since his arrival in 2007, which includes three BCS National Championships in the last four years.

"All the support [Moore] has given to our program, he certainly deserves a tremendous amount of credit for any success that we have had. Because the way he sets the table has served us so well." Saban said.

When asked if he would be interested in becoming an athletic director in the future, Saban quickly squashed any hopes the Alabama faithful may have had of him being both head coach and AD.{}

"I never really have thought much about it. I certainly wouldn't want to try and do it as a coach. So that's something I would not even entertain or do." Saban said. "My focus is trying improve what I do and how we do it."

The university said it would find a replacement for Moore as soon as possible. Many names have already been rumored including Baltimore Ravens General Manager Ozzie Newsome and former deputy athletic director and current Tennessee AD Dave Hart.

For now though, Saban just wants his good friend{} to get healthy.

"I'm happy for him. I'd be most happy for him if he can get healthy and be around here with us. But I'm going to miss him."

Moore released the following statement today:

"As many of you may know, due to factors related to my health, I am at a point that I can no longer fulfill my duties as athletics director in the true championship manner the position requires," said Moore. "While I have to focus on my health issue, I look forward to maintaining an ongoing working relationship with this great University as special assistant to Dr. Bonner. I know I can count on each of you to continue your unequaled support for me and The University of Alabama.

"I cannot adequately express what the University means to me. It has been a part of my life for more than 50 years, and I feel honored to have served the Crimson Tide as a player, coach and administrator. I am so appreciative of the University administration, coaches, staff, student-athletes and fans who have made my tenure as director so very meaningful, memorable and special."