Potential candidates for the Florida Gators’ head football coaching job

Dan Mullen was the Gators' offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach from 2005-08 and has a history of developing quarterbacks. [Getty Images]
Dan Mullen was the Gators' offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach from 2005-08 and has a history of developing quarterbacks. [Getty Images]
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Among the names you’ll hear mentioned as the Gators’ next coach:

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Dan Mullen

Dan Mullen, Mississippi State head coach, 45 years old: The most obvious candidate. Stricklin was his AD in Starkville, before Stricklin left for UF in the fall of 2016. Mullen was the Gators’ offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach from 2005-08 and has a history of developing quarterbacks (Tim Tebow and Dak Prescott).

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Scott Frost

Scott Frost, UCF head coach, 42: The hottest up-and-comer on the market, plus he has ties to the state. Frost quickly rebuilt the Knights with a top-tier offense. The former Bucs defensive back has worked under and played for some of the best minds in the game, including Tom Osborne, Chip Kelly and Jon Gruden.

RELATED: Fennelly: Memo to Jim McElwain: Later, Gator

OCTAVIO JONES | Times

Charlie Strong

Charlie Strong, USF head coach, 57: He spent four previous stops with UF, and he’s still well regarded by some in Gainesville. But Strong’s defensive roots likely rule him out of a program that’s still looking for offense.

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Mike Norvell

Mike Norvell, Memphis head coach, 36: He’s young (36) but posting wins and plenty of points in his second year as a head coach.

RELATED: Fennelly: With Jim McElwain out, here are coaches for Gators to consider

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Dana Holgorsen

Dana Holgorsen, West Virginia head coach, 46: He put up big offensive numbers as an assistant at Houston and Oklahoma State, and he’s still putting them up with the Mountaineers (with former Gators quarterback Will Grier). He and his administration have not always gotten along well.

RELATED: Jim McElwain out as Florida Gators head football coach

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Lane Kiffin

Lane Kiffin, Florida Atlantic head coach, 42: The entertainment value would be off the charts. But Kiffin failed in his last stint as an SEC head coach, and one year with the Owls probably isn’t enough to rebuild his image.

RELATED: A 42-7 loss to No. 3 Georgia caps brutal week for Florida

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Mike Leach

Mike Leach, Washington State head coach, 56: His athletic director recently bolted for Nebraska, and he loves Florida (he’s a regular in the Keys). How would his pirate personality fare at a blueblood program?

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Justin Fuente

Justin Fuente, Virginia Tech head coach, 41: He won with offense at Memphis and has won with offense with the Hokies, where he seems like a good fit.

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Dino Babers

Dino Babers, Syracuse head coach, 56: His win over Clemson wasn’t a fluke, and his teams run a version of the high-scoring Baylor offense.

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