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Nick Saban staying at Bama, UA is 'where I plan to end my coaching career'

Nick Saban led Alabama to three national championships over the past four years. (Source: Alabama Athletics Communications) Nick Saban led Alabama to three national championships over the past four years. (Source: Alabama Athletics Communications)

(RNN) - Nick Saban has agreed to a new long-term contract extension with Alabama, the university confirmed Friday.

No details on the length or terms of the contract were immediately available.

"Terry [Saban] and our family are very happy in Tuscaloosa. It has become home to us," Saban said in a statement released by the university.

"We are excited about the future and the University of Alabama is where I plan to end my coaching career."

The agreement must be officially approved by the UA board of trustees.

Alabama Athletic Director Bill Battle called Saban "the best in the business," saying he "has led our program to the pinnacle of college football."

"This agreement is a strong indication of our mutual commitment to building on the foundation he has established," Battle said.

Saban is already the highest paid coach in college football, pulling in $5.62 million a year before a new agreement kicks in.

The agreement ends months of speculation that Saban was the top target to replace embattled Texas coach Mack Brown. The rumors reached a fever pitch this week when reports of Brown being forced out began to leak.

The website reported on Wednesday that Brown would retire by the end of the week. Brown and his attorney disputed the reports at the time, but speculation grew that the Texas coach of 16 years was in trouble after a disappointing 8-4 season.

At the Texas football banquet Friday night, Brown did not announce that he was stepping down, according to the Austin Statesman.  And while he didn't say he was remaining as head coach, when he walked off the stage, he looked at Texas' new athletic director Steve Patterson and said, "Looking forward to continue to work with you guys," the Statesman reported.

ESPN is reporting that Brown is fighting for his job after a Friday meeting with president Bill Powers and Patterson.

Early in the week and ESPN reported that Alabama had offered Saban a $7-million-a-year contract extension on Friday, Dec. 6. As the week wore on, reports that Texas might offer Saban as much as $10 million a year surfaced.

Saban repeatedly denied that he would take the Texas job. He famously said that at age 62, he was "too damned old" to start over at another school.

In a Nov. 26 story in the Wall Street Journal, Saban's wife, Terry Saban, said that Alabama fans were spoiled by success and had become unappreciative, but "We're staying. We're not going anywhere."

The Saban-to-Texas rumors started early in the 2013 season when reports leaked out that a University of Texas regent had contacted Saban's agent, Jimmy Sexton, last January after Alabama beat Notre Dame for its second straight national championship. In that conversation, Sexton told the regent that Texas was the only school Saban would consider leaving Alabama for.

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