The Florida Gators fired head coach Jim McElwain this week after the shine had clearly come off his promising debut season. Interim head coach Randy Shannon once coached the Miami Hurricanes, but Florida fans are dreaming bigger and only one coach is a truly perfect fit: Jimbo Fisher.
The Florida State coach has a National Title on his resume, but that didn’t stop Gene Chizik from being run out of Auburn within a couple years. With calls to fire Fisher growing, Florida should seize this chance. Even if he’s not fired, his $40 million buyout would be a pittance compared to the value he can bring.
Fisher would bring to Gainesville the same cozy relationship with local police that he cultivated at Florida State. Urban Meyer built a champion at Florida, but could not sustain it due to meddling by the authorities. If anything, Fisher would come to Gainesville better equipped than Meyer.
This, however, is not the biggest reason Fisher must be the coach Florida hires. There are much more insidious dynamics at work. The Sabanization of the SEC is truly problematic for a myriad of reasons, and the same Saban privilege that brought Jim McElwain to Florida in the first place will have a similar result with Fisher. The SEC continues to buy into Alabama football as the ideal and excluding those with a non-Saban background.
These trends, such as the offense-shaming of teams built on the passing game, are marginalizing those of diverse backgrounds. Les Miles and Mark Richt were both pushed out of the conference recently because they didn’t conform to the cisheteronormative standards of “The Process.” Meanwhile, a Saban guy in Kirby Smart takes over Richt’s roster, beats a few teams and now Georgia is the #1 team in the nation? This blatant act of roster appropriation is deeply offensive to those from Richt heritage. Check your privilege, Kirby Smart.
Even Will Muschamp, who was fired from Florida, found a head coaching job in the SEC. And people claim there’s no Saban privilege anymore? This is when the Sabanarchy is most insidious; when it’s veiled like this.
Unfortunately, since they never play anyone outside their own Sabanwashed sphere of influence, the oppression of Alabama will continue unabated for at least another year, and though it’s not necessarily fair to pass over candidates from other coaching backgrounds in favor of Fisher, it’s exactly what Florida will do.