Notebook: Pouncey thinks Weis headed to UF
Published: Saturday, January 1, 2011 at 7:35 p.m.
Last Modified: Saturday, January 1, 2011 at 7:35 p.m.
TAMPA — Speculation about Charlie Weis heading to Florida intensified Saturday.
Earlier this week, sources told The Gainesville Sun and other media outlets, including ESPN, that Weis, the former Notre Dame coach and current Kansas City Chiefs offensive coordinator, is new Florida coach Will Muschamp's target to be his offensive coordinator.
Muschamp is expected to make most of his hires known before Tuesday, the day after the recruiting dead period ends.
Reports out of Miami have former UF receiver Aubrey Hill joining the staff. Hill was a receivers coach with Miami.
Senior center Mike Pouncey said Saturday he first heard about Weis possibly joining Florida's staff from ESPN reports, but said he thinks Muschamp's plan is to bring in Weis.
"I think he's coming," Pouncey said after Florida's 37-24 win over Penn State in the Outback Bowl.
Pouncey said he believes Weis' pro-style offense could play a pivotal role in keeping quarterback John Brantley at Florida. Brantley said after the regular season he will discuss with his parents the possibility of transferring from Florida.
"I think with them bringing in Charlie Weis, it's going to change a lot — hopefully make him stay at Florida," Pouncey said.
Pouncey said Brantley will still weigh all of his options and added that either decision by Brantley wouldn't surprise him.
"He has to do what's best for him," he said. "He's a great player so I hope he stays at Florida, because Florida's a great place."
Redshirt freshman offensive guard Jonotthan Harrison made his first career start at left guard, while senior Carl Johnson moved from left guard to left tackle. Pouncey said the moves were made because sophomore tackle Xavier Nixon didn't practice during the "entire bowl preparation." Harrison practiced in Johnson's spot this month.
Nixon later entered the game, but Pouncey said he was proud of how Harrison played.
"He did good for his first career start against some tough defenders," Pouncey said. "Those guys inside were strong guys and I think he held his ground."
Junior safety Will Hill was held out of the first quarter for unspecified reasons. Sophomore Josh Evans started for him.
Florida then lost cornerback Jeremy Brown early to injury and had freshman Cody Riggs, who started for Janoris Jenkins and temporarily left with an injury, playing opposite Moses Jenkins and fellow frosh Jaylen Watkins at times.
Urban Meyer said freshman safety Matt Elam hurt his hamstring, causing the coaches to rotate Evans in for senior Ahmad Black, who left the game twice with a leg injury and a helmet malfunction.
"We were a mess there for a little bit, but they hung in there," Urban Meyer said of the secondary. "I was even looking at some of our receivers thinking we're going to have to stick one of those guys in there."
For the seventh time this season, Florida was scoreless in the first quarter.
The Gators ran 16 plays for 56 yards and had two turnovers.
Florida finished the year outscoring opponents 56-48 in the first quarter, but only scored four offensive touchdowns.
Solomon Patton's blocked punt in the second quarter was the fourth of the season for Florida and the 21st under Meyer. Defensive end Lerentee McCray returned the block 27 yards for a touchdown to put Florida up 14-7. It was the third time Florida has returned a blocked punt for a touchdown under Meyer.
"We used to be known to do that around here," Meyer said. "It used to be kind of our signature.
"That changed the game, it really spun it around."
Since 2005, Florida has blocked 32 kicks, including eight field goals and three extra points. Florida finished 16-0 under Meyer when blocking a punt.
PSU running back Evan Royster's 101 rushing yards gave him 1,017 yards this season, making him the first player in school history to have three 1,000-yard seasons.
PSU's all-time leading rusher finished his career with 3,935 rushing yards and 69 touchdowns
Tim Tebow tweet
Happy New Year and Congratulations to Coach Meyer!! Thanks for all the memories! Love you, Great way to start out 2011!!!
Saturday's attendance was 60,574. Florida is 19-19 all-time in bowl games, including 2-2 in the Outback Bowl, and 5-1 under Meyer. The Gators are 7-4 against the Big Ten in bowl games. Penn State is 27-14-2 in bowls and 9-5 against the SEC. ... Twenty of PSU's 42 bowls have been played in Florida. The Nittany Lions are 10-9-1 all time in Florida and 12-10-1 all-time against Florida schools, going 0-3 against UF. PSU is 3-1 in the Outback Bowl. ... Florida finished the year having 19 different players score a touchdown. This was Florida's fourth game this season with three or more interceptions.