Former Alabama Athletics Director Mal Moore Dies

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TUSCALOOSA, Ala.  (WHNT)-- The University of Alabama athletic department has confirmed that former Alabama Athletics director Mal Moore has passed away at the age of 73.

The school released a short statement this morning that says:

The University of Alabama is sad to report that longtime Director of Athletics Mal Moore passed away on Saturday at Duke University Medical Center in Durham, N.C. Mr. Moore was 73 years old.

At this time, this is all the school has released.  They said they do expect to be able to release more information as they learn more about his death.

It was announced earlier in the week that Moore was in need of a lung transplant.  He had resigned earlier in March because of his health issues.  He was replaced by Bill Battle.

A 1963 graduate of The University of Alabama, Moore earned both an undergraduate degree in Sociology and a 1964 master’s degree in Secondary Education from the Capstone. The University of Alabama’s director of Athletics since 1999, Moore was a football player under legendary Crimson Tide head coach Paul W. “Bear” Bryant from 1958-62 and went on to serve as an assistant football coach on Bryant’s staff. Moore has the distinction of being a part of 10 national championship football teams as a player, coach and athletics director.

In 2011, Moore was elected to the State of Alabama Sports Hall of Fame for his accomplishments as a coach and an administrator. After the completion of the 2011-12 academic and athletic seasons, Moore was named the winner of the John L. Toner Award, given by the National Football Foundation and the Hall of Fame to the nation’s best athletics director.

The names "Bryant" and "Saban" may have more starpower, but many feel the cornerstone of the Crimson Tide is the one who has more rings than either.

"He has probably done more for the university or as much as anbyody," said local sports talk radio host Wes Neighbors, who also played offensive lineman for Alabama in the 1980's. "Mal just thought it [resigning] was in the best interest of the university, because that's all he really cares about, the University of Alabama and his family."

Moore's most famous decision as athletic director came in 2007 when he hired Nick Saban to resurrect a dynasty. Six years and three national championships later the mission is complete.

In addition to making his mark on Alabama, Moore also had a national impact as a key member of several prestigious NCAA and college football committees. He has served on the NCAA Division I Football Issues Committee, the SEC Athletics Directors Bowl Advisory Committee and the Big Six Conferences Minority Coaches Forum.