Lane Kiffin staying with Alabama

Lane Kiffin will return to Alabama next season and remain the team's offensive coordinator, the Crimson Tide announced Saturday.

Kiffin had been a front-runner for the San Francisco 49ers' offensive coordinator job, sources told ESPN's Adam Schefter last Sunday.

"We're very pleased and happy that Lane is going to be staying here at the University of Alabama with us," coach Nick Saban said in a statement released on Twitter. "He's done a fabulous job and is one of the finest offensive coaches in the country. He is going to have plenty of opportunities in the future and we want to continue to help him develop as a coach so when he leaves here, he'll be in a very good situation. Our offense was extremely productive last season and we look forward to building on some of the good things we did on that side of the ball with this year's team."

Under Kiffin, first-year starting quarterback Blake Sims completed 64.5 percent of his passes for 3,487 yards and 28 touchdowns this past season. Wide receiver Amari Cooper became a Heisman Trophy finalist, catching 124 passes (an SEC single-season record) for 1,727 yards and 16 scores.

As a team, the Crimson Tide were 16th in points per game (36.9).

"I made a comment at the [Allstate] Sugar Bowl that I would be back this fall at Alabama and that is definitely the plan," Kiffin said. "This time of year, there are lots of things out there regarding other coaching opportunities, but I want to reaffirm my commitment to the University of Alabama, coach Saban, and our team.

"I'm excited about what our offensive staff was able to accomplish last year, but I also think there are a lot of things we can do a better job of in terms of putting our players in the best situation to have success."