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Napier: There's more to come

January 14, 2022
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Florida head coach Billy Napier spoke to the media on Friday to discuss his staff and the next steps for the team en route to the 2022 season.

Here are the highlights:

  • With Napier and his staff coming together in preparation for the 2022 season, the “Foundation” stage of the new head coach’s plan will begin on Tuesday. The staff is currently going through assessment profiles with each individual player and the goal now will be creating the base for a successful season by establishing leadership roles and setting the standards. “Vision without an action is a dream,” Napier said. He will begin phase one of his vision in just four days.
  • The University of Georgia just completed their National Championship run, putting some pressure on the Gators to dethrone their SEC East rivals. However, Napier said that while it’s important to be aware of the competition he is focused on his program first. “We got our own grass to mow,” he said, “I’m a little more concerned on working hard inside our house instead of worrying what the neighbor’s house is doing.”
  • Napier talked about building an army, and according to him, he isn’t even close to done. “I could probably tell you how many we have left to hire,” Napier said, “Probably more than how many we’ve hired.” According to Napier, the numerous hires do not equate to meaningless jobs. So, buckle up. He’s not done yet.
  • For Napier it’s all in the relationships and delegation made possible by hiring a high-quality staff. “More people that can have a sincere care for the player and want to impact the player,” Napier said. Adding that a second component of balance and quality in life will be a prioritized tasked for the staff in a profession that, according to Napier, can “chew you up and spit you out.”
  • Assistant AD of Recruiting Strategy Katie Turner and Director of On-Campus Recruiting Bri Wade are now at the helm of Gator recruiting. Today marks the start of their first test as another contact period for recruiting has opened. “We’re in the sales business,” Napier said, “We’re selling our product, presenting our product, creating unique experiences for the players and their families.” The sale will be on full display through Jan. 29 when this contact period ends.
  • Napier established that an objective approach was being implemented in a systematic effort to not only assess the players he and his staff have inherited from former coach Dan Mullen, but to identify positions that were in need of added depth — utilizing the transfer portal and the revamped recruiting effort to bolster the team. “I know lots of coaches and staffs do it differently but we’re going to be objective evaluation team recruiting and everything will be mapped out from that approach.
  • Napier on the hiring of former LSU cornerbacks coach and recruiting coordinator Corey Raymond. “Always very impressed with him from a teaching perspective. I used to watch him in pregame. His drill progression, the detail, the technique his players play with, really good fundamentals, play with great leverage. Certainly, he did a good job of evaluating players and developing those guys,” Napier said. The Raymond hiring was one based on a proven developer with a high ceiling, strong relationships, and extensive insight. “A true expert in his area,” according to Napier.
  • Quarterback Emory Jones had previously announced that he would be entering the transfer portal after the bowl game against UCF. As Inside the Gators reported 17 days ago, he was at the first team meeting. Napier confirmed that Jones is still at UF and said he is impressed with his character. Napier said he hopes the fans show him the respect he deserves because Jones cares about this university.

WCC Insider: Some notes from the team meeting

 

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Rafael De Los Santos and Chris Will contributed to this report.

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WCC: Updates on everything Napier had to say can be seen HERE.

 

Napier: There's more to come

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