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Monday, December 13, 2004
Meyer takes four from Utah

Associated Press

GAINESVILLE, Fla. -- Florida coach Urban Meyer nearly filled out his coaching staff Monday, keeping two assistants from Ron Zook's staff and bringing four with him from Utah.

Meyer also named Indiana offensive coordinator Steve Addazio the tight ends coach and hired Notre Dame defensive line coach Greg Mattison.

Gators defensive coordinator Charlie Strong will work with Mattison on the defensive side of the ball, but Meyer did not specify their roles. Strong and Mattison were expected to be named co-defensive coordinators, with Strong handling linebackers and Mattison working with the line.

Meyer also said running backs coach and recruiting coordinator Mike Locksley will remain at Florida in the same capacity.

Utah assistants Billy Gonzales, John Hevesy, Dan Mullen and Chuck Heater will move with Meyer from Salt Lake City.

Gonzales will coach wide receivers, Hevesy will coach the offensive line and Mullen will coach quarterbacks. Heater, who was cornerbacks coach and recruiting coordinator at Utah, has not been assigned a role.

"I'm very excited about the group of coaches that are joining our staff," Meyer said in a statement. "They fit in with the vision I have for this program and are quality people."

Meyer still has one coaching spot open.

Meyer, who will coach Utah in the Fiesta Bowl on Jan. 1, was hired earlier this month to replace Zook, who was fired Oct. 25 but finished the regular season. Zook was hired as Illinois' new head coach last week. Strong will serve as Florida's interim coach when the Gators play Miami in the Peach Bowl Dec. 31.

Meyer's moves mean the Gators could have an awkward coaching situation during the Peach Bowl -- with four coaches leaving to join Zook at Illinois, two staying with Meyer and three possibly without jobs.

Florida offensive coordinator Larry Fedora and secondary coach Dan Disch already have agreed to join Zook at Illinois. Linebackers coach Bill Miller and offensive line coach Joe Wickline also were expected to take positions on Zook's staff.

But receivers coach Dwayne Dixon, quarterback coach Ed Zaunbrecher and defensive line coach Jerry "Red" Anderson haven't been offered jobs at Florida or Illinois.