Jim McElwain has quickly become one of the most polarizing coaches in the SEC.
He’s won back-to-back SEC East titles and won 19 games in his first two seasons at Florida. But the former Alabama offensive coordinator has seen his offenses struggle as the Gators have started four different quarterbacks in McElwain’s first two seasons.
Heading into his third year as the Gators’ head coach, McElwain hopes to find that answer at quarterback as redshirt freshman Feleipe Franks and Kyle Trask battle for the starting quarterback job while Luke Del Rio recovers from shoulder surgery.
McElwain also has to replace a ton of talent on the defensive side of the ball, as Jalen Tabor, Quincy Wilson and Jarrad Davis are all likely to be high NFL draft picks. McElwain already replaced former defensive coordinator Geoff Collins with Randy Shannon, as Collins left to become the head coach at Temple. Offensive coordinator Doug Nussmeier returns on the other side of the ball.
Despite some unrest by some Florida fans, McElwain finished with the second highest approval rating among SEC coaches, as SEC Country’s first poll showed McElwain had an 85.9 percent approval rating. Only Nick Saban had a higher rating, as he came in with a 97.1 rating. Despite this fan support, McElwain’s name was linked to the Oregon job that ultimately went to Willie Taggart.
McElwain earned a reported $4.3 million in 2016. The Gators open the 2017 season against Jim Harbaugh and Michigan on Sept. 2.
Vote on Jim McElwain’s approval rating
The SEC Country approval rating poll is designed to give an indication of fan happiness over a period of time.
Our formula is based on the percentage of respondents that select each answer. We multiply that percentage by the following factors: 1 (strongly approve), 0.67 (approve), 0.33 (disapprove) and 0.0 (strongly disapprove). In other words, if 50 percent of respondents select “strongly approve” and 50 percent select “approve,” the formula would be (50 x 1) + (50 x 0.67) = 83.5% approval rating.