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Florida fires defensive coordinator Todd Grantham after blowout loss to South Carolina

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Todd Grantham is no longer at Florida.

The Gators' defensive coordinator was fired on Sunday after Florida lost to South Carolina. Grantham's departure was first reported by The Athletic's Bruce Feldman and confirmed by Yahoo Sports' Pete Thamel. 

Florida offensive line coach John Hevesy has also been let go. Hevesy has worked for Florida coach Dan Mullen since Mullen was hired as Mississippi State's coach in 2009 and helped recruit Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott to Starkville. 

Grantham has been at Florida since Mullen was hired ahead of the 2018 season. He was on Mullen’s staff at Mississippi State in 2017 after he was the defensive coordinator at Louisville for three seasons.

Before he was at Louisville, Grantham was the defensive coordinator at Georgia for four seasons and also had extensive NFL experience. He was the defensive coordinator for the Cleveland Browns and has also coached for the Dallas Cowboys, Houston Texans and Indianapolis Colts.

Florida confirmed both dismissals on Monday morning and announced that linebackers coach Christian Robinson will now take over as the defensive play-caller. Additionally, graduate assistant Michael Sollenne will work with the offensive line and Paul Pasqualoni will be moved into an on-field coaching role for the remainder of the season. Pasqualoni, the former head coach at Syracuse and UConn, previously served as special assistant to the head coach. 

Florida coming off embarrassing loss to South Carolina

Florida dropped to 4-5 after losing 40-17 to the Gamecocks on Saturday night. The Gators are allowing nearly 25 points per game in 2021 and have given up more than 30 points in each of the past three games since a 42-0 win over Vanderbilt. 

Grantham's departure will come as a welcome sight for many Florida fans who had grown tired of the team's defense. Florida allowed 30.8 points per game in 2020 and its great offense with Kyle Trask, Kyle Pitts and Kadarius Toney was a big reason why the Gators went 8-4. 

Florida allowed 20 points per game in Grantham's first season with the team and 15.5 points per game in 2019. But the team clearly regressed defensively over the past two seasons. A defensive coaching change felt inevitable. It was only a matter of if it happened during the middle of the season or after it was over. 

The staff changes come amidst a tumultuous period for the Gators. Florida gave Alabama a game in a 31-29 loss in Week 3. The Gators have gone 2-4 since then and are two losses away from missing a bowl game for the first time since 2017. 

Florida has gone 12-9 since going 11-2 in 2019. The Gators ended the 2020 season on a three-game losing streak and are 2-8 against SEC opponents since beating Tennessee on Dec. 5. 

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