UF's coaching search continues
Published: Wednesday, December 28, 2011 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Tuesday, December 27, 2011 at 11:52 p.m.
JACKSONVILLE — There are a lot of reports circulating out there about who is going to be Florida's new strength and conditioning coordinator and who might be the Gators' new offensive coordinator.
Who: Florida (6-6) vs. Ohio State (6-6)
When: Jan. 2, 1 p.m.
Where: EverBank Field in Jacksonville
On TV: ESPN2
Radio: 103.7 FM, AM-850
But the reality is Will Muschamp isn't ready to fill either of the two vacancies on his coaching staff. That was the news from the UF head coach after the Gators' first Gator Bowl practice Tuesday.
“I haven't hired anybody,” he said. “I've talked to a lot of people at the strength position and the offensive coordinator's position. When I make the hire everybody will know. But no one has been hired, no one has been offered a job yet. So, that's it.”
There have been Internet and Twitter reports that Jeff Dillman, who works at IMG Performance Institute in Bradenton, is going to be the new strength coach. He previously worked at LSU and Appalachian State.
But Muschamp said Tuesday he's still going through the process of identifying and interviewing prospects for both the strength coach and offensive coordinator positions.
“I still have people I want to talk to,” Muschamp said. “I've talked to probably six, seven, eight people so far. Again some people over Christmas. Some people this week I plan on talking to. Then after the bowl game.
“I've never put a timetable on it because it's the right fit for Florida, it's going to be the best decision for Florida. It's an important hire, both of them are. I've talked to multiple people on both situations.”
Muschamp declined to mention names of potential candidates for both openings.
“No. We're not going to have a public search,” he said. “I've talked to people and their privacy is important to me, too.”
One of the most obvious, and visible, candidates for the offensive coordinator's job is running backs coach Brian White, whom Muschamp named the interim offensive coordinator for the bowl game.
Muschamp praised the work White has done with the offense preparing for the Gator Bowl game against Ohio State.
“I don't know that I've learned anything. I know he's a good football coach,” Muschamp said. “It's reassured my confidence in him as a football coach. He's done a nice job preparing our football team. It's all about situational football and being prepared for those situations when they occur in the game.
“As a play caller, you've got a knack for that. He did a great job for Barry Alvarez for, I believe, nine years and won a lot of football games. When you've sat in that role it's different than being in a role where you've never been in that situation at a big program, in the light, in the Rose Bowl. And Brian has done that. That's exciting to me.”
Muschamp reiterated that the offense has not changed under White — and it will not change whoever he names as the offensive coordinator after the bowl game.
“We're going to remain what we do,” he said. “I like what we're doing offensively. We've just got to be more productive. That's simple. I like what we're doing.”
“There's not going to be a whole lot of change of what we do. Brian's and Charlie (Weis') philosophies are both the same. More than anything, it's my philosophy. It's what I want to be on offense, and that's where we're headed.”
Muschamp said White's experience as a play caller weighed heavily in his decision to turn the offense over to White for the bowl game.
“No question,” Muschamp said. “Everyone has great ideas until they've sat in that chair. Then they understand the difference. They see the big picture, they understand all the things that go with running an offense or running a defense. No question his experience was very critical in our growth as an offense as we move forward.”