Florida Fires Head Coach Jim McElwain

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"We want to thank Coach McElwain for his efforts in leading the Gator football program", Florida athletics director Scott Stricklin said. Yesterday, rumors began to swirl about McElwain's future and Florida exploring the possibility of firing him with cause, and AD Scott Stricklin attempted to quiet them nearly immediately. "We are confident Coach Shannon will provide the proper guidance to the players and rest of staff during this time and we will begin a national search for the next head coach". The Gators play at Missouri on Saturday. Florida had gone 2-1 against Georgia, 1-1 in bowl games and 0-2 against Florida State with no real hope for a brighter future in sight.

McElwain got into hot water on Monday when he steered the answer to an innocuous question into a diatribe about the pressures players, coaches and their families face in the modern day, specifically mentioning that death threats had been made to someone in that group.

Strickland said McElwain "created a different storyline and caused a lot of distractions". This resulted in Stricklin releasing a statement that said no one in his administration has been part of negotiations, stating "our focus is on this great Florida-Georgia rivalry today in Jacksonville". "I'll leave it at that".

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That would let Florida avoid paying the 55-year-old coach the full amount, $12.75 million, left on his contract. The Gators now rank 113th in total offense, in triple digits nationally for the third time in McElwain's three seasons.

Despite his reputation as an offensive guru, McElwain's teams at Florida never fielded powerful offensive attacks.

His 19 wins entering the 2017 season were the second most by any SEC coach in 2015 and '16. This year, the Gators are ranked 113th nationally in total offense, averaging 336.6 yards per game.

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