Jacksonville Sports Day

SEC: McElwain Named Head Football Coach at Florida

GAINESVILLE, Fla.-Jim McElwain will be the 24th head coach of the Florida football program, University of Florida athletics director Jeremy Foley announced Thursday. 

In his third season at Colorado State, McElwain, the 2014 Mountain West Coach of the Year, has led the Rams to a 10-2 record in 2014, with a bowl appearance upcoming.

McElwain, a 30-year coaching veteran, spent the 2008-11 seasons as offensive coordinator at Alabama, where he played a key role in leading the Crimson Tide to two BCS national championships (2009 and ’11).

“It’s an honor to be a part of the one of most powerful brands in college athletics in the Florida Gators,” said McElwain. “I’m humbled, yet very excited about the tremendous opportunity that Dr. Machen and Jeremy Foley have afforded me and my family. I can’t tell you how eager I am to get to Gainesville to set a course for who we are going to be and what we will be all about.”

The University of Florida Athletic Association and Colorado State have agreed to a payment of $3 million over six years. Florida and Colorado State will also play a game in Gainesville between 2017-20 with a $2 million guarantee. Coach McElwain has agreed to a $2 million payment over time to Colorado State.

Coach McElwain’s total compensation package will average $3.5 million annually over six years.

“Coach McElwain was someone we targeted from the beginning of the search,” said Foley. “The more we worked through the process and did our due diligence, coupled with our meeting and conversations with him and those around him, it was obvious he is the right person to lead the Florida Gator football program.”

McElwain took over a struggling CSU program and turned it around in just three seasons. The Rams had not had back-to-back winning seasons since 2002-03 and had won just three games each of the three years prior to McElwain’s arrival. After going 4-8 in his first season in Fort Collins, CSU won eight games in 2013, its most wins in 12 seasons, including a victory in the New Mexico Bowl over Washington State.

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