Less than a month after leaving Alabama to join Butch Jones at Arkansas State, former Boaz and North Alabama standout AJ Milwee has joined new Texas head coach Steve Sarkisian as the Longhorns’ quarterbacks coach.
Milwee joined Arkansas State on December 28, and was set to work alongside Jones, with whom he'd worked the past two seasons at Alabama, before jumping at the chance to join Sarksian in Austin and the Big 12.
In addition to Milwee, two other members of Alabama’s national championship-winning staff made the jump to Texas with Sarkisian, including Jeff Banks, who was the Tide’s special teams coordinator, and Kyle Flood, the offensive line coach who helped Alabama’s unit claim the Joe Moore Award for top offensive line this past season.
“Player development, X's and O's and ability to recruit were our priorities with this staff. When you look at their backgrounds, there's experience and expertise from an NFL standpoint, coaching at a very high level in the college ranks, and it's an outstanding collection of proven and successful recruiters, as well," Sarkisian told texassports.com. "For every coach we hired, I looked closely at their ability to recruit and evaluate prospects, and this group can do that with the best of them. They all have a great recruiting background and many of them with significant ties to recruiting in the state of Texas.”
Milwee, who graduated from Boaz High School in 2004, has quickly risen up the coaching ranks following a standout career at North Alabama.
Milwee transferred to UNA after a year at Alabama, and went on to become the most prolific passer in Lions history, he posted a 33-5 mark as the starting quarterback during his three seasons. Milwee also set all-time school records for career passing yards (8,436), pass completions (677), passing attempts (1,030), touchdown passes (73) and total offensive yards (9,401). He earned honorable mention All-America honors during his senior season, and was a two-time finalist for the Harlon Hill Trophy, awarded annually to the nation's top player at the NCAA Division-II level.
Milwee was also a graduate assistant at UNA for two years after his playing career wrapped up. His dad Jeff Milwee is a former Guntersville assistant coach who later was the head coach at Boaz. His mom Fran Milwee was a longtime Guntersville attorney who now practices in Boaz.
The younger Milwee helped the Tide to a 13-0 record this past season and the school’s 18th national championship following a rout of Ohio State in the national championship game. Before this past season, he helped the Tide to a No. 8 ranking at the finish of the 2019 season.
Prior to his two years at Alabama, Milwee spent seven seasons at Akron where he started as the quarterbacks’ coach in 2012, and then was promoted to offensive coordinator in 2013. During his time at Akron, he helped turn around one of the most downtrodden programs in the country, including a division title in 2017, and helped the Zips pass for the second most touchdowns in a season in school history in 2016 when they found the endzone 25 times through the air.
Milwee was named to the inaugural American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) 30 Under 30 Coaches' Leadership Institute in 2016, a program aimed at training future leaders in football coaching.
Before his stint at Akron, Milwee was an assistant at East Mississippi College for one year, where they won a NJCAA national championship.
At Boaz, Milwee was a standout passer who heled the Pirates make two playoff runs during his junior and senior seasons.
Milwee will be joined at Texas by his wife Ashley, and their children JJ and Jett.