Gators coach Muschamp’s contract released

Three months ago, the University of Florida released detailed contract information for the assistant coaches of the Florida Gators football program. Thursday, the school did the same regarding head coach Will Muschamp‘s five-year, $13.75 million deal.

According to Florida, Muschamp will earn $2,750,400 per season and received a $750,000 bonus upon signing his contract. Other bonuses include $500,000 if he is retained as coach through Jan. 31, 2016 (and $250,000 more if he is retained through Jan. 31, 2017), $200,000 per year from Nike, $75,000 for winning the Southeastern Conference Championship and $250,000 for winning the BCS National Championship. He will also have an annual expense account of just over $60,000.

Muschamp can be bought out for $500,000 but would be paid $2 million for every year remaining on his contract if the Gators decide to terminate him.

The second-largest contract among Florida’s coaches is that of offensive coordinator Charlie Weis, who signed a three-year, $2.625 million deal. The contract makes him the highest-paid assistant coach in school history. Weis will earn salaries of $765,000 in 2011 and $865,000 in both 2012 and 2013; he also received a $100,000 signing bonus.

A look at the coaching staff’s 2011 salaries compared with their counterparts in 2010:

2011 Coach2011 Salary2010 Coach2010 Salary
Will Muschamp
Head Coach
(5 years)
Urban Meyer
Head Coach
(6 years)
Charlie Weis
Offensive Coordinator
(3 years)
Steve Addazio
Offensive Coordinator
(Offensive Line)
Dan Quinn
Defensive Coordinator
(Defensive Line)
(2 years)
Teryl Austin
Defensive Coordinator
Brian White
Running Backs
(1 year)
Brian White
Tight Ends coach
Frank Verducci
Offensive Line
(2 years)
Scot Loeffler
Aubrey Hill
Wide Receivers
(1 year)
Zach Azzanni
Wide Receivers
D.J. Durkin
(1 year)

D.J. Durkin
Travaris Robinson
(1 year)
Chuck Heater
Co-Defensive Coordinator
Derek Lewis
Tight Ends
(1 year)
Stan Drayton
Running Backs
Bryant Young
Asst. Defensive Line
(2 years)
Dan McCarney
Assistant Head Coach
(Defensive Line)
* White and Durkin are both in the second year of two-year contracts signed in 2010.

Contract notes (as of 2010):
– Asst. coaches receive a $10,000 bonus from Florida’s contract with Nike
– All coaches receive a car and other tangible incentives

Universal bonuses (as of 2010):
– BCS National Championship Game appearance – up to 30 percent increase
– Other BCS bowl game appearance – 20 percent increase
– SEC Championship Game appearance – 10 percent increase
– Non-BCS bowl game – 10 percent increase
– Bowl game with less than $2 million payout – one month’s salary increase

Top tight end Thompson commits to Gators

With more than 20 offers on the table, four-star tight end Colin Thompson (Warminster, PA) had trimmed his list down to three and already informed the college of his choice that he would be attending their institution either in the summer or in the fall. On Thursday, Thompson made his decision official, announcing at Archbishop Wood Catholic High School that he has committed to play for the Florida Gators next season.

One of the top tight ends in the 2012 recruiting cycle, Thompson chose Florida over Wisconsin and Boston College, the other schools in his final three.

At 6’5” and 255 lbs., he is the big, physical tight end that offensive coordinator Charlie Weis was undoubtedly looking for. Thompson has good hands and can also successfully block on rushing and passing downs.

“They tell me they need me at the tight end position because they don’t have anyone like me on their roster, more of a pro-style tight end,” he told on April 25. “I talked with Coach Weis and he pretty much reiterated the whole thing.”

Speaking with, which got the early exclusive on his commitment, Thompson said Weis’s potential influence on his career was a huge factor.

“If you are a Pennsylvania tight end, you are a big man and you want to play for Charlie Weis, that’s what you do,” he said. “I liked him the first day I met him. He’s the type of guy that even though he has four Super Bowl rings, he doesn’t talk about himself, he doesn’t bring out the rings and he makes the conversation about you.

“When we talked, he put his cell phone on silent and missed calls from Bill Belichick and Jimmy Clausen, and he wasn’t showing off about it at all. With Charlie, he’s a good guy and one thing that did appeal to me is Charlie’s son is a senior in high school and going to be a freshman at Florida next year. So, Charlie’s not going anywhere, which is going to be great to have him there for the next five years.”

Thompson, the Gators’ 10th commitment already for 2012, previously expressed to that he has grown close with Weis, tight ends coach Derek Lewis and head coach Will Muschamp. All three coaches spoke with him extensively when he visited the University of Florida from April 20-22.

Photo Credit: Unknown

Former Florida WR Reche Caldwell arrested

Former Florida Gators wide receiver Reche Caldwell was arrested early Thursday morning near Tampa, FL and charged with two misdemeanors including possession of marijuana (less than 20 grams) and driving with a suspended or revoked license.

A seven-year NFL veteran, Caldwell played most of his career with the San Diego Chargers (2002-05) before spending one season each with the New England Patriots (2006) and Washington Redskins (2007).

He was released after five hours on a $750 bond, according to the St. Petersburg Times.

Photo Credit: Unknown

Florida Gators featured on College Football Live

Florida Gators football was profiled Wednesday on ESPN‘s College Football Live program in a discussion forum featuring analysts Kirk Herbstreit, Robert Smith, former Florida head coach Urban Meyer and former Gators quarterback Jesse Palmer. The panel discusses Will Muschamp‘s transition from defensive coordinator to head coach, players finding the “hunger” to win, getting the team to play like a “blue collar” group, offensive coordinator Charlie Weis‘s impact and whether or not redshirt senior quarterback John Brantley can turn it around after a tough first season as the starter.

TWO BITS: Tebow’s quote, Zunino is on fire

1 » Appearing at a charity event Tuesday with Denver Broncos rookie linebacker Von Miller, second-year quarterback Tim Tebow made an impression on the No. 2 overall pick as well as the crowd in attendance. One notable thing Tebow said, which was picked up initially by the Denver Post, was a comment he made about players being role models. “I get sick when I hear athletes say,’ I’m not a role model,'” he said. “Yes you are. You’re just not a very good one.”

2 » Shutting out the Bethune-Cookman Wildcats (29-20) in decisive fashion on Tuesday, No. 4/5 Florida Gators baseball (35-10) used two home runs and a career-high seven RBI from sophomore catcher Mike Zunino to propel them to an 11-0 victory. Zunino, who now has reached 10 dingers and 46 RBI on the season, turned in a 3-4 performance Tuesday. He has hit safely in nine-straight games and is 9-12 with three homers and 13 RBI in three games since Saturday. Rounding out the offensive performance for Florida on Tuesday was senior centerfielder Bryson Smith (2-5), who smacked a pair of RBI and scored three runs. Junior left-handed pitcher Alex Panteliodis (3-1) was dynamite on the mound, striking out five in 4.1 innings for the win.

FOUR BITS: Brantley; lacrosse wins big awards

1 » Taking a second look at spring practices across the country, ESPN Insider’s KC Joyner has come to a conclusion that may surprise some Florida Gators fans: redshirt senior quarterback John Brantley played well. Here is what he saw by watching the film. To read the rest of The Football Scientist’s observations, click here (subscription req.).

It might seem a bit odd to be touting Brantley after a 4-for-14, 45-yard performance in the Orange and Blue game, but consider this: In a three-game sample review of Brantley’s 2010 season, he threw a stretch vertical pass (defined as thrown 20 or more yards downfield) only 5 percent of the time. This is a very low number and indicates the Gators were not very effective at even threatening the long pass.

In the spring game, four of Brantley’s aerials fell under the “stretch vertical” designation and one would have been completed for 40 yards had it not been for a very good defensive play. Brantley also did not force any of these downfield passes into coverage, so the downside on these throws was limited. It bodes well for what the Florida vertical game will be able to do in 2011 — not just for Brantley and Charlie Weis’ new downfield passing game, but for the playmakers in the Gators’ running game as well.

2 » No. 2/3 Florida lacrosse (14-2, 5-0 ALC) is getting prepared for the 2011 ALC Tournament set to begin on Thursday, but in the meantime the conference announced its awards on Tuesday and honored seven different Gators. Florida sophomore midfielder Kitty Cullen was named Player of the Year and head coach Amanda O’Leary earned Coach of the Year honors. Also singled out by the conference were All-ALC First Team members Cullen, sophomore attacker Ashley Bruns and sophomore defender Sam Farrell as well as Second Team members sophomore M Janine Hillier, sophomore D Haydon Judge and sophomore goalkeeper Mikey Meagher.

3 » Moving on with his professional career, Gators forward Chandler Parsons is currently working out in Los Angeles, CA and training for camps that he will compete in prior to the 2011 NBA Draft on June 23. The University of Florida’s website caught up with him to pick his brain on a number of topics including the realization that his college career has come to an end. “I can’t believe how fast everything went, it feels like I was just a freshman and now I’m graduated and trying to make a career out this,” he said. “It was a great experience; my time at UF was the best four years of my life. The relationships with my teammates and coaches, the entire staff, those memories will last a lifetime. […] A lot of people look at the NBA Draft night as an end point. For me it’s just a starting point. I know I have things to work on, but I’ve gotten good feedback from people, I’m going to work as hard as I can and do everything possible over these six weeks or so to put myself in the best position.”

4 » Another Gator has had a run-in with the law, but this one went head-on with an Alachua County deputy police officer.

TWO BITS: Jenkins leaning toward transferring

1 » Former Florida Gators cornerback Janoris Jenkins, whose career hangs in limbo as he decides whether to try his hand at the NFL via the Supplemental Draft, another professional league or another college, is leaning toward the latter choice according to Len Pasquarelli of CBS Sports. Two sources told Pasquarelli that Jenkins will likely transfer to a non-Division I school in order to paint himself in a better light before the 2012 NFL Draft rolls around. “It’s about 50-50 right now that he tries to find a [college] to play and convince scouts that he’s really serious about an NFL career,” one of Pasquarelli’s sources told him.

2 » With offers from a number of other top-tier institutions, one of the best women’s basketball recruits in the state of Kentucky decided to commit to Florida on Monday. Sydney Moss, the daughter of NFL wide receiver Randy Moss, will sign with the Gators in November. She chose Florida over Kentucky, Kansas, Louisville, West Virginia, Dayton, Xavier and UCLA and averaged 22.6 points and 10.8 rebounds per game as a junior in high school.

Two former Gators selected in 2011 UFL Draft

The 2011 NFL Draft came and went last weekend with four former Florida Gators selected during the three-day event.

Center Mike Pouncey was chosen by the Miami Dolphins in the first round, tackle Marcus Gilbert was picked in the second round and is headed to join Pouncey’s brother with the Pittsburgh Steelers, safety Ahmad Black had to wait until the fifth round to be selected by his childhood favorite Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and the Washington Redskins gave guard Maurice Hurt a chance in the seventh round.

The United Football League held its third draft on Monday with two former Florida players earning unique opportunities.

Cornerback Reynaldo Hill, a four-year NFL veteran (Tennessee Titans, 2005-08), was selected with the No. 2 overall pick in the first round by the Omaha Nighthawks. Hill was a seventh round pick by Tennessee in 2005 but has been out of the league for years.

Defensive tackle Ian Scott, a seven-year veteran and fourth round pick by the Chicago Bears in the 2003 NFL Draft, was chosen No. 30 overall in the sixth round by the Virginia Destroyers and head coach Marty Schottenheimer. After playing for Chicago (2003-06), Scott had a short stint with the Philadelphia Eagles (2007) before finishing his career with the San Diego Chargers (2008-09).

The duo join former Gators guard Tavares Washington in the UFL; Washington has played the last two seasons for the Las Vegas Locomotives.

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