Does Florida already have things in place to make Chip Kelly the next head coach of the program? One Florida insider says that’s the case.
On Wednesday morning, Darren Heitner revealed that sources have told him Kelly made a verbal agreement with Florida before last week. Meanwhile, the Gators are already in the process of looking at potential assistants for a new staff.
However, that agreement doesn’t set anything in stone.
Sources: Chip verbally agreed to Florida before South Carolina game & Florida has been vetting dozens of assistant candidates.
Chip signed an agreement with Florida on Sunday. Agreement includes window for Chip to back out of deal. Hence UCLA talks.
— Darren Heitner (@DarrenHeitner) November 22, 2017
While it may seem strange to have an “agreement” while leaving the door open for Kelly to take a job elsewhere, the verbal handshake could have been a way for the two parties to put enough in writing to facilitate finalizing a contract.
Furthermore, while it may not be completely binding, there could be some aspects that are. For instance, maybe Kelly and the Gators agreed that he could only meet with UCLA, excluding the possibility of other schools getting into the mix.
Those are just hypothetical reasons as to why Florida would set up something like that, but Heitner’s reporting lately does have merit.
If you recall, Heitner was the first to report that the school was working on buyout negotiations with former coach Jim McElwain, which started a lot of the speculation concerning McElwain’s tenure in Gainesville.