GAINESVILLE, Florida – New Florida Coach Billy Napier met with local reporters for about 40 minutes at his first press conference of his tenure at UF, and one thing quickly emerged.
Napier has a plan and he plans to stick to it.
There will be no rushed decisions, no panic in the building as he begins to establish his culture and articulate his vision of the Gators as a program. Florida has committed significant capital to Napier to initiate this transformation, including a salary pool of $ 7.5 million for its 10 assistant coaches on the field and an additional $ 5 million for auxiliary support staff.
“This is a talent acquisition company,” Napier said. “We will be working tirelessly in this area. Our first task will be to hire quality management and support staff. I firmly believe that hiring talented and honest people in an organization decides how far we go. “
Napier has reportedly already made the decision to bring two of his top assistants from Louisiana to Florida, and he will spend part of the next few weeks assessing and organizing his staff.
Recruiting will be a priority, but the Gators won’t go out of their way to add prospects just to add them. The new UF manager has specifically warned that he plans to take a patient approach and may not even sign many players during the early signing period, which begins on December 15.
Napier’s vision begins with not making mistakes by not trusting the process. Deal on short term solutions.
The end goal, of course, is to create a program that is highly sustainable and creates a culture of full membership at all levels. Florida’s willingness to invest in Napier means this change at the administrative level to continue to provide as many resources as possible, as a few of UF’s peers at the SEC have done over the years, most notably its rival. Georgia and the Alabama juggernaut.
“We’re going to go through a very thorough assessment process,” Napier said. “We’re going to hire an army of people here. We’re going to build an infrastructure, not just in the personnel department, but also out of campus recruiting, creative media, name, image and likeness. We have a great vision for the organization that we are going to create here.
“We’re the University of Florida, aren’t we? We have a lot to sell here, and I think the time is right. I think the administration’s willingness to invest in our vision and this organization that we’re going to create, you combine that with the resources they provide to hire exceptional staff, I think the new facility is going to give us an edge that we may not have had before here, and I think our closeness to the player is a direct benefit. So our ability to bring these young men and their families to our campus, and then we do our job, right? “
So what can Florida fans expect over the next few months? First and foremost, resources flowing in to execute the vision.
The first few months will be spent laying the groundwork and creating expectations, with everything focused on developing the football players and young men who join the program.
“We’re going to have a quality support system in place to help our players,” Napier said. “We want our players to reach their maximum potential as football players. We are going to have a development plan throughout the year, it will be very specific and detailed with goals for each phase, and we will master this routine. This will be the key to our success in the field.
“These three together – person, student and player – can help launch a young man’s career after football, and we want to use all of our resources as a university to help create better people. People who will represent this university for generations to The type of experience I’m talking about will be one where young men will want to come back and visit and eventually position themselves and he can give back to the place and the people who helped him achieve his goals. “