The Gators officially have a new defensive line coach.
After rumors flew around for a couple of days, Jim McElwain made the announcement: he has hired former Texas DL coach Chris Rumph to replace Terrell Williams. Williams was on the UF staff for all of a few weeks, and left to return to the NFL. A source told me this was because he supposedly either didn’t understand or enjoy recruiting to the extent that a college assistant coach is supposed to, and of course, that’s half the job. So McElwain replaced him with a guy that does understand and enjoy recruiting.
Rumph has made stops at some of the biggest programs in the country as DL coach, so if anything, this is an upgrade. He was the DL coach at Clemson and Alabama before going to Texas in 2014, where his defensive line ranked 11th in FBS in sacks per game (3.1). Before his days in Austin, he was Nick Saban’s DL coach at Alabama from 2011-2013, where he worked with talented players such as Jeoffrey Pagan and Ed Stinson, and helped continue the long running dominance of the Crimson Tide’s defense.
So yeah, it’s a big get for McElwain, because of his extensive experience at coaching defensive lines in college as opposed to just the NFL. His first season with Alabama, 2011, happened to be Jim McElwain’s last as the Tide’s offensive coordinator. So their pre-existing relationship was probably why McElwain was able to wrestle him away from Texas; Rumph is about as hot a commodity as you’ll find among college football assistant coaches.
Of course, there’s a bigger reason behind why I’m posting this little news update now, and we all know what it is: the status of Cece Jefferson. I’m currently on hold with my source about how (or if) this affects him; keep checking our National Signing Day tracker for updates on that story, as I expect to have another one soon.