Florida Gators head coach Will Muschamp completed his 2012 coaching staff on Wednesday by hiring Brent Pease to succeed Charlie Weis as offensive coordinator.
A member of the Boise State Broncos’ staff since 2006, Pease has served as the team’s wide receivers coach (2006-10), assistant head coach (2007-10) and offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach (2011). Prior to his stint with Boise State, he was the offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach at Baylor (2003-05), Kentucky (2001-02), Northern Arizona (1999-2000) and Montana (1996-98).
“I’ve had him on my radar for a while,” Muschamp said in an official school release. “I think we have improved our football program. We’re on the same page philosophically with what we want to be, and that to me is what strikes you the most. He’s not a stat guy. He is a guy who wants to win football games. If you look at the last six or seven years at Boise … they won football games. He was really a strong force behind what they have been doing offensively.”
“I’m excited to join the University of Florida football family and The Gator Nation,” Pease said in kind. “I’ve always had the utmost respect for Coach Muschamp and the UF program and I’m honored to have the opportunity to work at one of the premier institutions in the nation. I look forward to working with a tremendous coaching staff and, from what I hear, a great group of eager, young football players.
“Coach Muschamp and I share a lot of the same philosophies so this was a perfect fit. I want to be multiple in our offensive formations and have a balanced attack with tempo. I firmly believe in being fundamentally sound and red-zone efficient. I want to develop our players in a pro-style offense that can help them at the next level. ”
Pease signed a three-year contract with the University of Florida that is set to pay him approximately $500,000 annually, according to the Associated Press.
He arrived in Gainesville, FL last Friday afternoon, as OGGOA first reported, and met with Muschamp over the course of the weekend.
However, The Gainesville Sun‘s Pat Dooley revealed Tuesday that Muschamp first held an interview with Pease in late December in Jacksonville, FL as his team was practicing for the 2012 Gator Bowl. Dooley also reported that the Gators met with or interviewed 12-15 candidates before deciding to hire Pease, who was reportedly also being considered by head coach Nick Saban for the same job with Alabama.
In his one year as offensive coordinator at Boise State, Pease’s Broncos finished ninth in total offense (481.3 yards), fifth in scoring offense (44.2 points), 40th in rushing offense (171.9 yards) and 11th in passing offense (309.4 yards)
He will join a Florida team looking to improve its offense in a major way. The Gators were ranked No. 105 in total offense at the conclusion of the 2011-12 season, gaining just 328.7 yards per game. Florida was 71st nationally in scoring offense (25.5 points), 73rd in rushing offense (143.0 yards) and 89th in passing offense (185.7 yards).
Pease and Muschamp most recently crossed paths in 2001 and 2002 when the former was with Kentucky and the latter with LSU. Muschamp’s team was victorious in both games but just barely, beating UK 29-25 in 2001 and 33-30 in 2002. The second victory is known as the “Bluegrass Miracle” in which LSU, the road team, tossed a 74-yard game-winning touchdown with no time remaining on the clock.
“They flat out got after us on offense that day,” Muschamp reminisced in the same release. “They stayed balanced in what they did and they made some big plays. They should have won the football game quite frankly.”
For Pease, his decision to team up with Muschamp marks the second time he will coach in the Southeastern Conference in his career.
“Being back in the SEC, working with Will and knowing what his future plan is, knowing the type of personality he has were factors,” said Pease, according to the school. “He’s a lot of what I like. It’s an opportunity to coach great players. You get the best. With what I’ve done offensively, it kind of fits what his philosophy is. That’s the greatest thing. I know what he wants and can work within those parameters. And there are some good guys on staff there.”
A former starting quarterback at Montana (1985-86), Pease spent four years toiling around the NFL but only officially made the Houston Oilers’ roster (1987-88). He also played for two teams in the World League of American Football (1991-92) as well as for the Arena Football League’s Cincinnati Rockers (1993).
After/while playing he got into coaching and has spent 21 years at five different stops.
“That’s another thing I really like about Brent,’’ Muschamp added. “He’s been to some different places and he’s done some different things. He’s been a lot of different places and has been exposed to a lot of different stuff and different schemes. All you do in this profession is you continue to learn and grow and then you’ve got to take your personnel and fit your scheme to your personnel. I think he’ll generate some new ideas in the room and will certainly blend well with the staff that we already have.’’
It is expected that running backs coach Brian White, who served as interim offensive coordinator for Florida during the Gator Bowl, will remain with the Gators. A tight ends coach (2009-10) under Urban Meyer who changed positions when Muschamp took over, White is a tireless recruiter and well-respected coach who the players and their families love and respect.
“I’d be happy to be part of this organization in every capacity every day I can be a part of it,” White said on Dec. 20. “My family loves it here. I love it here. Any opportunity to help this program get better in any way I’d be happy to be part of. Will’s going to do what’s in the best interest of the football program. That’s what he should do – what’s in the best interest of this university. He’ll make a great decision and it will be very beneficial to this program. I’m just happy to be here.”