Sal Sunseri’s playing days were long before any of his current players were born. But that hasn’t prevented him from earning respect from some of the Alabama linebackers.

Sunseri was a walk-on at Pitt in 1978 and ended his career as a team captain and consensus All-American in 1981. In fact, much of his coaching career pre-dates the memories of LB Anfernee Jennings and his teammates. But one thing they do know is experience, and this is the fourth year for Sunseri coaching outside linebackers under Nick Saban.

“He’s an OG,” Jennings told reporters. “We respect him. We like to learn from him. He’s hard-nosed, he’s old school — you can’t help but like that.”

Experience is something the linebacking corps brings to position coach Sunseri and the defense, including Jennings and Dylan Moses.

But it’s Sunseri’s outgoing personality, and ability to maximize his players’ potential that also draws their respect.

“He ain’t the type of coach that’s gonna sit there and pat you on the back all the time,” Jennings said. “He’s gonna tell you when you mess up, he’s gonna tell you when you’re doing good and just keep it real with you at all times. For me as a player that’s trying to get better each and every day, that’s all you can ask for.”