The Florida Gators offense will have a new look in 2014.
According to the Associated Press’ Mark Long, head coach Will Muschamp will switch from a pro-style offense in favor of a more up-tempo system. This could be just the change the Gators need if they hope to make a quick turnaround after a 4-8 finish this season.
This will also be critical in Florida’s search for a new offensive coordinator.
After firing Brent Pease on Sunday, Muschamp will be looking for his third offense coordinator in four years and will likely be coaching for his own job next season. Therefore, it is a must that he gets the right guy this time around.
Muschamp has run a pro-style offense since he was hired in 2011. Initially, Charlie Weis served as the offensive coordinator, with Pease taking over in 2012. In Muschamp’s three seasons, Florida’s offense has never ranked higher than 97th in the nation. This season, the Gators finished 112th in the nation in total offense at just 316.7 yards per game and averaged just 18.8 points per game.
With one year to turn things around, the switch to an up-tempo style is the best decision for Muschamp and the Gators.
For starters, his likely starting quarterback, Jeff Driskel, is better suited for this style of offense. Before his arrival at Florida, Driskel was heavily recruited by then-Florida head coach Urban Meyer to run his spread offense. Driskel was the No. 1 rated dual threat quarterback in the nation coming out of high school, and it is believed an up-tempo style would better fit his skill set.
Another factor making this a good decision is that despite this year’s record, Florida is loaded with talented athletes at virtually every offensive skill position. With Kelvin Taylor and potentially highly touted Dalvin Cook in the backfield and Ahmad Fulwood, Chris Thompson, Demarcus Robinson (if he can live up to his potential and stay out of trouble), Andre Debose (another Urban Meyer spread offense holdover), and the incoming Ermon Lane at wide receiver, Florida has the talent to make a seamless transition.
After making the switch from Urban Meyer’s spread offense upon his arrival, it always seemed like Muschamp was trying to force his offense to work at Florida, using mostly Urban Meyer’s players certainly didn’t help his cause either. But, with one year to right the ship, desperate times call for desperate measures.
This change in philosophy could be exactly what Florida needs to get back to being one of the top programs in all of college football.
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