Though Jeremy Pruitt will stay with Alabama through the end of their College Football Playoff run, the Crimson Tide will need to hire a new defensive coordinator before the start of the 2018 season.

That’s because Pruitt landed the Tennessee head coaching job and will depart as soon as the Playoff is over.

That leaves Nick Saban with some options. Will he promote from within or make an outside hire?

During his Monday appearance on “The Opening Drive” on WJOX, ESPN host Paul Finebaum said he thinks Saban will likely promote from within the Alabama program, but added that a name to keep an eye on is former Auburn coach Gene Chizik, who currently works at ESPN.

“I wouldn’t rule that out,” he said. “I think it’s an interesting possibility, from what everyone says. There is mutual respect between the two people, and he does fit that mold of the former head coach — the Lane Kiffin model, the Bobby Williams model — the model that he has used so many times before — Kevin Steele — on his staff.”

Saban has a while before he has to decide on a replacement, as Pruitt is planning on staying through the Playoff. However, he’s likely already started going through his options.

What happens next remains to be seen, but Saban’s decision will certainly be an interesting one.