New Gators Coach Reportedly Eyeing Jim Knowles as Defensive Coordinator

With how good Jim Knowles’ defense has been this season, he was always going to have options this offseason, and a historically great program could be in mix.

Florida on Sunday hired Bill Napier as its next head coach, and 247Sports’ Carl Reed reports that Napier has two guys atop his list as his defensive coordinator: Knowles and Houston DC Doug Belk.

Knowles, a semifinalist for the Broyles Award given to the best assistant in the nation, has captained the Cowboys to giving up a Big 12-best 16.4 points and 281.4 yards a game. The Cowboys shutout Texas Tech earlier this month, OSU’s first conference shutout this century.

Knowles joined Mike Gundy’s staff in 2018 after coaching at Duke from 2010-17. He also spent time at Cornell, Ole Miss and Western Michigan.

OSU coach Mike Gundy has made references in recent weeks to keeping Knowles in Stillwater, something that would certainly be welcomed to Cowboy fans.

“I’m looking forward to signing [Jim Knowles] to a long-term contract after this season and keeping him with us,” Gundy told ESPN’s Joel Klatt. “He’s settled in here in Stillwater, really likes the community, and obviously the people here are really fond of him,” said Gundy. “[Jim] has been with us four years. We’ve made changes. Coach Knowles understands concepts, schemes, and he has been able to adapt. He’s changed concepts and schemes based on our personnel and the teams we play. He’s done a great job.”

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