Posted December 26, 2013

Reports: Florida will hire Duke offensive coordinator Kurt Roper to same position

Florida Gators, SEC, Will Muschamp
Kurt Roper

Kurt Roper will have his work cut out for him: The Gators offense averaged just 18.8 points per game in 2013. (Bob Donnan/USA Today)

After being a big part of Duke’s miracle 10-win season that led to an ACC championship game appearance and a berth in the Chick-fil-A bowl, offensive coordinator and assistant head coach Kurt Roper will apparently have to pull a few more tricks out of his bag. Multiple reports are indicating Roper will take the vacant Florida offensive coordinator position in hopes of reviving a Gators offense that was largely ineffective in the team’s disastrous 4-8 season.

Per ESPN’s Edward Aschoff and Chris Low:

Roper has extensive history in the SEC. He got his coaching start at Tennessee while serving as a graduate assistant from 1996-98 and then followed current Duke head coach David Cutcliffe to Ole Miss, where he spent six years coaching quarterbacks and was the passing game coordinator during his final three seasons.

In 2005, Roper served as Kentucky’s quarterbacks coach before serving as running backs coach at Tennessee in 2006 and 2007.

Duke beat writer Laura Keely of the Raleigh News and Observer and CBS’s Bruce Feldman later confirmed ESPN’s report.

Brent Pease was removed as offensive coordinator at Florida on Dec. 1. The Gators ranked 100th in offensive S&P, according to Football Outsiders, and averaged just 18.8 points per game, good for 114th in the country. While injuries played a large part in Florida’s awful 2013, that excuse can only go so far. Even with second- and third-string players, there’s an expectation that it should’ve been able to beat teams like Georgia Southern and/or get to six wins.

Roper was able to get a lot out of a Duke team that is used to lesser talent. The Blue Devils averaged more than 31 points per game and ran some innovative schemes offensively, including going with a two-quarterback system to maximize its personnel. He’s got his work cut out for him at Florida, though, as Will Muschamp’s seat continues to get hotter.

6 comments
Cane87
Cane87

Anything that hurts any team that beat us this year is a good thing to me.  The enemy of my enemy is my friend...

WilliamBrady
WilliamBrady

Florida is near the top in coaching opportunities, why did Foley experiment with a DC with no head coaching experience.  Foley and Muschamp have set Gator football back 10 years. Nothing against Roper, he may be the best OC willing to come to UF for 1 year, but again Pease got 1.4 mil. for one year.  Anyone from FSU thinks the ACC is the toughest conference in the Universe, but for the rest of us know there is a world of difference between Florida's and Dukes foes.

Then there is the Muschamp factor. Does he really understand that his defense 1st philosophy was truly flawed and stay away from all things offense. Now that Muschamp wasted the 1st 3 years how long will it take him to learn a new system and rebuild.  I would have seen more sense in Roper as head coach in stead of just OC, Roper couldn't be any worse than Muschamp.


Adolfis
Adolfis

Will be interesting if Muschump can stay out of the offensive play calling.

MariaATrimble
MariaATrimble

hmmmmmmmmm? Hope his scheme translates well in the SEC.

kielkodw
kielkodw

He's stepping into a hornet's nest.


Odds are the Gators are heading for another mediocre season at best, given Muschamp's propensity to run the offense, which he knows nothing about.

mountainbrook417
mountainbrook417

Probably hard to find a guy to take a job for just one year.