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Florida Gators hire former IMG official Jeff Dillman as director of strength and conditioning

GAINESVILLE — Florida coach Will Muschamp hired Jeff Dillman, former head of physical conditioning at the IMG Performance Institute in Bradenton, as the Gators' director of strength and conditioning.

Dillman replaces Mickey Marotti, who left last month to join former coach Urban Meyer at Ohio State.

Dillman also worked at his alma mater Appalachian State, where he oversaw teams during back-to-back Division I-AA national titles as the head strength and conditioning coach in 2006 and 2007. He also served on the staff at LSU for its SEC and BCS championships in 2003.

"I'm excited to have Jeff join our staff," Muschamp said. "He is a perfect fit for what we were looking for. He has trained athletes at the highest caliber on every level — from high school, to college to the NFL. Jeff knows what physical and mental tools are needed to be successful and has a developmental plan to make every player better."

Around the nation

FAMILIAR PARTNERSHIP: Terry Bowden picked one of his dad's former assistants to help him revive Akron.

Bowden named former North Carolina State coach Chuck Amato as his defensive coordinator and associate head coach. Amato, 65, who took the Wolfpack to five bowl games from 2000-06, spent 21 seasons on Bobby Bowden's staff at FSU.

"I'm incredibly excited to be able to hire someone of Chuck Amato's caliber," Terry Bowden said. "When I interviewed for this job, I said that was the most important hire I could make would be bringing in a defensive coordinator that would have the experience, reputation and enthusiasm to build our defense. I will spend much of my time implementing the offense, so getting the right guy on defense was essential.

"From the very first moment, Chuck has been that guy."

ARIZONA ST.: Junior linebacker Vontaze Burfict will enter the NFL draft.

INDIANA: Former Arizona offensive coordinator Seth Littrell was hired for the same position.

KANSAS: Coach Charlie Weis tapped into his Notre Dame connections and hired Rob Ianello as wide receivers coach and recruiting coordinator. Ianello spent five seasons as an assistant under Weis in South Bend.

KENTUCKY: Coach Joker Phillips announced he has hired Mike Cassity to coach defensive backs to fill the spot left by Steve Brown. Cassity has 37 seasons of coaching experience, 22 as defensive coordinator.

MISSISSIPPI ST.: Junior defensive tackle Fletcher Cox, a first-team All-SEC pick, will enter the NFL draft.

NORTH CAROLINA: Coach Larry Fedora is bringing six members of his Southern Mississippi coaching staff with him to the ACC. Offensive assistants Blake Anderson, Walt Bell and Chris Kapilovic will join defensive assistants Deke Adams, Dan Disch and David Duggan with Fedora in his first season as head coach of the Tar Heels.

RUTGERS: Junior wide receiver Mohamed Sanu will enter the NFL draft after breaking Big East and school records with 115 catches.

STANFORD: Junior offensive tackle Jonathan Martin, projected as a high first-round pick, will enter the NFL draft.

Information from Times wires was used in this report.

Florida Gators hire former IMG official Jeff Dillman as director of strength and conditioning 01/03/12 [Last modified: Tuesday, January 3, 2012 9:21pm]

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