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Alabama Softball Coach Patrick Murphy Leaves for LSU

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Former UA Softball Coach Patrick Murphy. Photo Marion R. Walding/UA Athletics.
Former UA Softball Coach Patrick Murphy. Photo Marion R. Walding/UA Athletics.

Officials at LSU announced this afternoon that Patrick Murphy has been named the head coach of the Tiger's softball.

Murphy arrived at Alabama in 1996 as an assistant on the softball team's inagural season. He took over the head coaching duties in 1998 and proceeded to lead the Tide to more than 700 victories, seven Women's College World Series appearances and six SEC Championships. His career .772 winning percentage is the fourth-highest in NCAA history.

Murphy guided Alabama to a 53-11 mark and a third place finish at the 2011 Women's College World Series. Alabama also won its second straight SEC regular season championship.

Murphy takes over for LSU's Yvette Girouard who stepped down at the conclusion of last season. He served as Girouard's top assistant at Louisiana-Lafayette in the early 1990s and has long considered the highly respected Tiger's coach a mentor. 

UPDATE: TideSports.com's Tommy Deas confirms that Alabama offered to match LSU's salary offer which will make Murphy the highest paid in collegiate softball.