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December 1, 2013
Florida fires Brent Pease, Tim Davis
If the side of the ball you're in charge of is referred to as "infectious" more than once, it's likely your future isn't exactly certain. Therefore, Sunday's news should come as no surprise.
Per a report from the Associated Press, Brent Pease has been fired from his role as Florida's offensive coordinator. Pease was reportedly informed of the news during a meeting with Will Muschamp this morning.
In addition, CBS Sports has reported offensive line coach Tim Davis has been fired.
UF confirmed the news Sunday afternoon.
"I have a lot of respect for coach Pease and coach Davis,'' said Muschamp in an official statement. "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."
For the past three years, the Gators offense has been among the worst in college football. Florida finished No. 105 in total offense in 2011, No. 104 in an 11-2 2012 and No. 114 in a 4-8 2013. Pease has been a part of only the last two years of trouble. Charlie Weis was Florida offensive coordinator in 2011 before becoming coach at Kansas, who had the nation's No. 119 offense in 2013.
Since a 36-17 loss in which the Gators gained 151 yards, the UF offense has become the scapegoat where Muschamp once always blamed the defense he has control over for losses. The identity of Florida has been defense the past three years, but Muschamp has pulled no punches blaming the offense for the teams struggles as of late.
The word "inept" has floated around.
"I am grateful for the opportunity to come to the University of Florida and work with a bunch of great coaches, administrative staff and players," Pease said in an official statement. "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."
Pease shook off the idea he has become a scapegoat Tuesday, saying that might be a question he could answer later. Now probably classifies as later. Those in Pease's corner will point to the common denominator of Muschamp in the Gators' three seasons scraping college football's offensive bottom.
Some point to Muschamp's need for complete control and the idea that he will handcuff any coach he has into a run-first, ball-control offense that preaches a conservative nature.
"Perception's not always reality," Muschamp said Saturday. "I'm willing to do what we need to do to score points and win games."
The seeds of change have been planted for weeks now in Gainesville. It took all of one day. Change couldn't wait.
"I don't think it's any secret, and Will will tell you, we've got to fix that side of the ball. I'm not being disrespectful to anybody, but you look at some of the games we've lost, we haven't scored many points," athletic director Jeremy Foley said Saturday. "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."
Pease's contract with Florida ran through 2015 and was worth $590,000 annually. He received a $100,000 raise after the 2012 season. Davis was paid $300,000 in 2013 after receiving a $25,000 raise but had not received a contract renewal for 2014.
The AP also reported Jacksonville coach Kerwin Bell and Western Kentucky coach Bobby Petrino will not be candidates for Florida's now vacant offensive coordinator position.