Make us your home page

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Coaches who could replace Urban Meyer at Florida

Who replaces Meyer?

DAN MULLEN, 37, MISS. STATE: He was Urban Meyer's offensive coordinator at UF until this season, having followed him from Utah and Bowling Green. Mullen received much credit from QB Tim Tebow for UF's offensive success during their time together. His familiarity, being only a season removed, is a plus. And he had a good first season with the Bulldogs, upsetting LSU and putting a major scare into Florida.

Gary Patterson, 49, TCU: The defensive-minded coach is hot right now, putting the Horned Frogs (currently ranked No. 3) in the final Top 25 five times in eight years and a BCS bowl this season. He has led TCU to at least 10 wins in six of the past eight years.

BOBBY PETRINO, 48, ARKANSAS: Has there ever been a prominent opening where his name hasn't come up? He has only been with the Razorbacks since 2008, after abruptly leaving the NFL's Atlanta Falcons after one season in 2007, which came after he abruptly left Louisville after signing a 10-year contract extension in 2006. But his offensive wizardry has followed him at seemingly every stop.

MIKE SHANAHAN, 57: Many have the two-time-winning Super Bowl coach headed to the Redskins once Jim Zorn is likely fired at season's end. The onetime UF offensive coordinator (1980-83) was a popular pick in 2001 (when Steve Spurrier left) and 2004 (when Ron Zook was fired) to come back to Gainesville, but it has been more than 25 years since he has had to recruit. At this point in his life, does he want to go that route?

BOB STOOPS, 49, OKLAHOMA: The defensive coordinator on UF's first national championship team in 1996 said no thanks to being a head-coaching candidate for the Gators in 2001 and 2004. This year, Stoops was again one of the most popular names being tossed around to replace Charlie Weis at Notre Dame. Once again, Stoops said not interested. Will the Gators come calling a third time?

CHARLIE STRONG, 49, LOUISVILLE (almost): UF's current defensive coordinator had one of the longest tenures on any Gator coaching staff in recent history: four stints, 15 seasons. But this month he got his first head-coaching gig with the Cardinals, whom he'll take over after the Sugar Bowl. But could he (would he) call an audible? Louisville said Strong has signed a term sheet with the school but not a formal contract.

KYLE WITTINGHAM, 50, UTAH: The Gators struck gold once with the Utes in Meyer in 2005, so maybe they can do it again. Wittingham has a defensive background, serving as Utah's defensive coordinator for 10 seasons before taking over as head coach. He is 47-17 in five seasons and was named coach of the year in 2008.

THE REST? For those who like to have fun — or send Gator fans screaming — how does Charlie Weis grab you? Or maybe the Head Ball Coach returning? And to go completely insane, which is where head-coach speculation often ends up, there's a legend in Tallahassee who will have some time on his hands after Friday.

Compiled by Times staff writer Anthony Perez with information from Times wires.

Coaches who could replace Urban Meyer at Florida 12/26/09 [Last modified: Sunday, December 27, 2009 12:32am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. It's not a game, but the names are all the same in this football family


    TAMPA — A coach yells across the field into a scrum of blue-and-white clad football bodies at Jefferson High: "Kim Mitchell! Kim Mitchell, come here!"

    These twins are not only identical, but they have almost identical names. Kim Mitchell III, left, and Kim Mitchell IV are  talented football players at Jefferson High with Division I-A college offers. Kim  III wears No. 22 and plays cornerback while Kim IV wears No. 11 and plays safety. (Scott Purks, Special to the Times)
  2. Bucs quarterback Jameis Winston (3) pumps his fist to the crowd after Tampa Bay's 29-7 victory over Chicago on Sunday, Sept. 17, 2017. The Bucs play at Minnesota at 1 p.m. Sunday. WILL VRAGOVIC   |   Times

  3. Cannon Fodder podcast: Sorting through the Bucs' injuries


    Greg Auman sorts through the Bucs players sidelined with injury and illness in the latest edition of our Cannon Fodder podcast.

    Kwon Alexander left the Bucs' game against the Bears with a hamstring injury. [WILL VRAGOVIC   |   Times]
  4. College football week 4: Tampa Bay Times staff predictions


    The Times' college football coverage team makes its picks for week 4 of the college football season:

    USF coach Charlie Strong and the Bulls face Temple in a 7:30 p.m. game Thursday at Raymond James Stadium. LOREN ELLIOTT   |   Times
  5. Young girl injured by 105 mph foul at Yankee Stadium renews call for more netting


    NEW YORK — A young girl at Yankee Stadium was injured by a 105 mph foul ball off the bat of Todd Frazier during Wednesday's game against Minnesota, leading some players to call for protective netting to be extended.

    Baseball fans reacts as a young girl is tended to before she is carried out of the seating area after being hit by a line drive in the fifth inning of a baseball game between the New York Yankees and Minnesota Twins, Wednesday, Sept. 20, 2017, at Yankee Stadium in New York. [Associated Press]