For those Gator Nation denizens hoping a historically embarrassing loss Saturday would lead to a change at head coach, you’ll be sorely disappointed. Reportedly.
Citing a source close to the football program, the Orlando Sentinel reported Sunday afternoon that Will Muschamp will return as Florida’s head coach in 2014. The report comes less than 24 hours after a home loss to FCS-level Georgia Southern, the latest in a series of embarrassments for the program.
While admittedly wracked with myriad injuries, Florida is in the midst of a six-game losing streak that’s the Gators’ longest since 1979. They will also finish the year with their worst record since that same season, with only a date with No. 2 Florida State standing between them and a 4-8 season in Muschamp’s third year in Gainesville. Additionally, for the first time since 1991, the Gators won’t be bowling in the offseason.
Part of the reason behind the apparent decision to move forward with Muschamp is athletic director Jeremy Foley‘s fervent commitment to the coach. Another could be a buyout that’s just south of $9 million, a sum that’s prohibitive even for a well-heeled athletic department like UF.
Change is, though, in the offing.
The Sentinel wrote that “significant changes to Muschamp’s coaching staff are expected” given all that’s transpired this season. While no specifics were mentioned in the report, it’s safe to assume that no offensive coach, up to and including coordinator Brent Pease, is safe.
In the second season under Pease, the Gators are 105th in passing offense (176 yards per game), 111th in total offense (327.9 ypg) and 110th in scoring offense (19.9 points per game). Florida is dead last in the SEC in the latter two categories, and ahead of just Arkansas in the former.
For the second time in less than a month, two members of the Purdue football program have found themselves on the wrong side of the law.
This time around it’s a pair of freshmen, linebacker Wyatt Cook and defensive end Chazmyn Turner, who are in a bit of a predicament, with the Indianapolis Star reporting that both players were arrested over the weekend. Cook was charged with minor consumption of alcohol while Turner was charged with possession of marijuana.
No details of what led to the arrests and charges were made public. The program is aware of the incident, but have not stated what if any punishment either could be facing.
Cook was a three-star member of this year’s recruiting class, Turner a two-star. Neither has played in a game this season.
In the middle of last month, two freshmen cornerbacks, Evyn Cooper and David Rose, were arrested and charged in connection to stolen bicycles. Those two were members of this year’s recruiting class as well.
It is no secret that Under Armour is making a nice serious push in acquiring university apparel deals, but the Texas Longhorns is not one it will be likely to whisk away from The Swoosh. According to one report from the Austin American-Statesman, University of Texas officials broke off a meeting with Under Armour and are now expected to stay with Nike moving forward.
The University of Texas has been a partner with Nike since 2000. The contract between the two gives Nike an exclusive window in which it can match or improve on any offers made to the school from rival companies such as Under Armour or Adidas. It is unknown if Under Armour made a formal offer to Texas or how much such an offer could have been valued. What is pretty much commonly known is the Texas brand is still a nice asset in the athletics apparel business, even if the Longhorns are struggling on the football field. Having Texas wear your gear is still a quality investment, which makes Texas a highly sought-after commodity.
Per the American-Statesman report, Texas is expected to sign what would be the biggest deal currently going in collegiate athletics. Considering the handsome deal recently signed between Nike and Michigan, that would mean Texas would be looking forward to more than $169 million from Nike. Michigan signed a 15-year contract valued at $169 million, which will bring an end to its current relationship with Adidas in 2016. As part of the deal, Michigan will become the first football program to wear the Jordan brand logo on its football uniforms. Could Texas be the next? For now that is just something to ponder.
Nike recently lost partners at Arizona State and Miami. Last year Notre Dame began a new partnership with Under Armour, signing a $90 million contract.