By Anthony Caruso III | Publisher
The Florida Gators are expected to hire Billy Napier as the team’s new head football coach. The negotiations are expected to be completed on Sunday afternoon, according to The Athletic.
Napier will replace Dan Mullen, who was fired by the school in November. Greg Knox is currently serving as the team’s interim head coach.
The 42-year-old has turned down opportunities to be a head coach at other schools over the past three coaching cycles. However, the Gators’ job was too good to pass up.
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This week, there were reports that Napier was atop Athletic Director Scott Stricklin’s wish list. He got his top guy this time around.
Stricklin previously wanted Chip Kelly to be the Gators’ head coach. Then once Kelly became the UCLA Bruins head coach, he had to go in another direction to hire Mullen, who he previously knew from Mississippi State.
Napier takes over a program that is 6-6 this season. The team is Bowl eligible and a Bowl announcement has not been made yet.
One thing he will have to do immediately is to figure out who will be the Gators’ quarterback for next season. The team used a dual system for much of the season and it hurt them.
Napier will have to decide if it is Emory Jones, who has one year of eligibility left in 2022. If it’s not Jones, Anthony Richardson would be the most logical choice if he remains with the school.
Richardson, who is from Gainesville, Florida, has hinted at maybe entering the transfer portal after being unhappy about a few performances.
He’s also going to recruit a quarterback or more so add to the mix.
Napier is 39-12 as a head coach with the Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns. He’s guided the team to three straight seasons with 10 wins or more.
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Strickland said that he wanted a coach, who built the team through recruiting and had sustained success. He hopes that Napier is the coach that he’s looking for in those terms.
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