Randy Shannon will reportedly be hired as Florida's linebackers coach and recruiting coordinator, as first reported by Brody of In All Kinds of Weather:
Just got confirmation that Randy Shannon is indeed coming to the University of Florida. Will be recruiting coordinator and LB's coach.— Brody (@Brody_IAKOW) December 31, 2014
That Wednesday morning report — which jibes with days of strong hinting on message boards that Shannon would leave Arkansas, where he has served as linebackers coach since 2013, to take the same position on Jim McElwain's staff — has since been confirmed by 247Sports and ESPN.
It may also be a strong indication that Florida will lose defensive backs coach and current recruiting coordinator Travaris Robinson to Auburn after its bowl game later this week. Robinson shifted into the role of Florida recruiting coordinator after the surprise resignation of Joker Phillips — the last former FBS head coach to serve as Florida's recruiting coordinator — this summer, and would seemingly be a lock to retain that role if he stays at Florida.
It should be noted, however, that only the original report has Shannon, who was the head coach at Miami from 2007 to 2010 after nearly 20 years of serving as an assistant with the Hurricanes and Miami Dolphins, getting the title of recruiting coordinator. Both 247Sports and ESPN are reporting that Shannon will be the linebackers coach. If there is a way that Florida can keep Robinson and hire Shannon, it will be one of the true coups of staff construction this offseason, as that duo alone would give Florida two of the most formidable recruiters for the state of Florida in the country.
And Shannon's no slouch as a coach, either, especially when not asked to serve as a head coach. His Miami defenses from 2001 to 2005 were among the most fearsome units in college football, and churned out NFL players who will be Hall of Famers. Shannon can also take significant credit for Ray Lewis: He was Miami's linebackers coach from 1993 to 1996, and for the entirety of Lewis's collegiate career.
This is a home run hire for Florida, unless Shannon has skeletons in his closet in regards to the NCAA-enraging misdeeds of Nevin Shapiro at Miami, and Shannon has repeatedly and publicly insisted that he had no part in Shapiro's conspiring with assistants to give Hurricanes players and recruits impermissible benefits, even saying he urged assistants to stay away from Shapiro.
And while Florida is not in need of the cleanup it was at the end of Urban Meyer's tenure, and may thus be willing to take more risks with its staff, I can't imagine Jeremy Foley okaying a hire like Shannon without comfort in his relatively clean hands.
Florida just scooped up a very good coach and an excellent recruiter. And if you don't think Shannon will enjoy recruiting South Florida against Miami even more from inside the Sunshine State than he has at Arkansas, just watch.