But what if they can't get one of those coaches or prefer to hire a defensive coach while giving him blank check to hire a proven offensive mind? If so, might they consider former Gators' defensive coordinator and current Temple head coach Geoff Collins?
Collins led dominant units during his two seasons in Gainesville (2015-16). They only gave up 30 or more points once in 2015 and ranked in the nation's top 10 in scoring and yardage average both seasons. He spent the four prior seasons as defensive coordinator at Mississippi State, during which the Bulldogs twice ranked in the top 35 in scoring and yardage average in the same season (2011 and 2013). Collins' defense yielded just 19.4 points per game in 2014 when they tied the program record for wins (10).
"Beng an SEC defensive coordinator for so long, every year you get approached for different jobs to be a head coach," he told HERO Sports in August.
Collins enters the Owls' regular-season finale at Tulsa with a 5-6 mark, and while five wins (or six or seven) will be a huge step back from the program's back-to-back 10-win seasons, they beat Navy and nearly knocked off Army and Houston. The defense has remained in or near the top half of the FBS in many categories despite losing eight starters and returning just 49 percent of their tackles.
Collins spent the last 18 years of his coaching career in the southeast before going to Philadelphia. He was lauded as a energetic recruiter and talent evaluator in the region.
"The guy's a heck of a coach," then-Florida head coach Jim McElwain said last winter. "They're going to get a guy that motivates players, a guy that really understands the game and understands both sides of the ball, not just the defensive side. "A relentless, competitive recruiter, and a guy that's now been around at some places to see how he can establish his own kind of way of doing things."
While McElwain's opinion now carries little weight after a failed run in Gainesville, there are similar feelings about Collins around college and high school football circles.
Given the Gators' offensive struggles (99th, 107th and 109th in the FBS in scoring average the last three seasons), a Collins' return to Florida seems unlikely, though not impossible if Chip Kelly and Scott Frost go elsewhere and they don't want to roll the dice on an unproven coach.