In an impromptu question and answer session with the media before the Florida State game, athletic director Jeremy pointed a finger towards Florida’s offense and said, “We’ve got to fix that side of the ball.” Head coach Will Muschamp wasted no time getting started on the repair job Sunday morning when he fired offensive coordinator Brent Pease, a move confirmed by multiple sources.
Sources have told Gator Country to expect a replacement for Pease to be picked sooner than later with a decision to come down in the next two weeks.
We have also been told from multiple sources that Tim Davis will not return as offensive line coach next season. The Gators finished ranked No. 12 in the SEC after allowing 27 sacks and Florida is looking to overhaul the offense in 2014.
Offensive ineptitude contributed heavily to a 4-8 season, Florida’s first losing mark since 1979’s 0-10-1 record, speculating that head coach Will Muschamp’s job was on the line. In speaking to the media Saturday, Foley confirmed that Muschamp will return but took note that the offense has to change for the better.
“I’m not being disrespectful to anybody, but you look at some of the games we’ve lost, we haven’t scored many points,” Foley said. “This year or last year or what have you, that has to get fixed. And that’s going to be Will’s responsibility as the head football coach. I’ll help him, support him, advise him, whatever have you. I will tell you if you ask him today, it’s his biggest concern. We’ve got to fix that side of the ball.”
“Fixing that side of the ball” apparently began with getting rid of the offensive coordinator.
Muschamp was under increased criticism after the Gators lost a shocking 26-20 decision to D1AA Georgia Southern, a game in which Florida managed fewer than 300 offensive yards. Muschamp sounded frustrated with the offense post game Georgia Southern and also at last week’s Monday media event.
“It becomes infectious,” Muschamp said of the offense. “It’s hard. When you give up 17 points you hope you score 17. That’s hard right now. And you can look at where we’ve rolled since about the middle of the season to this point, that’s what’s happened to us.”
The change on the offensive staff comes after the Gators finished with a 4-8 record and an offense ranked on the wrong side of the top 100 in the country for the third consecutive season — second under Pease.
Pease’s tenure at Florida brought more comparisons to the 0-10-1 season of 1979 and the almost equally futile year of 1988. The University of Florida’s offense has become a punch line and it was time for a change.
Update: The University of Florida confirmed that both Tim Davis and Brent Pease were let go.
I have a lot of respect for Coach Pease and Coach Davis,” Muschamp said in the release. “They are both good football coaches and even better people. There have been a lot of unfortunate circumstances this year, but that is part of the game sometimes. I want to thank each of them for their contributions to the program both on and off the field.”
Brent Pease also released a statement through the university.
I’m grateful for the opportunity to come to the University of Florida and work with a bunch of great coaches, administrative staff and players. I know we came up short of our ultimate goal, but I will carry on knowing I gained valuable friendships and relationships during my time here.”