Joker Phillips leaves Florida staff

Joker Phillips has resigned as Florida’s wide receivers coach, the Gators announced Wednesday.

Chris Leak will assume the responsibility of coaching wide receivers, coach Will Muschamp announced.

“I’m thankful for the opportunity that the University of Florida and Will Muschamp provided to me and my family, but at this time I have decided to step down from my position on the UF coaching staff for personal reasons,” Phillips said in a statement.

“I appreciate Joker’s contributions to our program and wish him and his wife, Leslie, nothing but the best in the future,” Muschamp said in the same statement.

Phillips, a 26-year coaching veteran, spent one season on the Gators’ staff after he was hired in December 2012. Before arriving in Gainesville, Phillips was the head coach at Kentucky for three seasons (2010-12).

Leak, quarterback of Florida’s 2006 BCS championship team, has been a Gators graduate assistant since May 2013.

33 comments Add your comment

Jeff

June 11th, 2014
4:28 pm

Rough times going on in Gainesville!

Wet Willie

June 11th, 2014
5:58 pm

Brett McMurphyVerified account ‏@McMurphyESPN

Joker Phillips forced to resign at UF by Will Muschamp because of Phillips’ possible NCAA recruiting violations source told @espn

gtcaryd

June 11th, 2014
6:19 pm

Sounds like a good reason to tie one on Tampa, we’ll see what happens.

Rick Gillmore

June 11th, 2014
7:27 pm

Something serious must have come to light because Joker was twitter posting “CHOMP CHOMP” the other day after the commitment of the elite 11 QB from California….and he had nothing to do with the recruitment of that player (Roper recruited him).. ESPN is reporting recruiting violations. Another news source in Florida is reporting health concerns. We will find out eventually if either is in fact the case. But Chris Leak will do a good job in his place and will likely be a much better recruiter. But, if Joker did something stupid on the recruiting trail, I am glad Florida acted quickly. And I hope Joker does not have a serious health issue either. But it seems likely that it is one or the other.

And Jeff……

Florida is recovering just fine from last year. I think you will see that when the season begins.

Tampa Gator

June 11th, 2014
7:29 pm

Just read the news about Joker. Shocking news. Not sure what is going on with Joker. Terribly sudden. Glad Chris Leak is on board to steady the ship. Go Gators.

Tampa Gator

June 11th, 2014
7:31 pm

@gtcaryd

Don’t drink. But I am sure Joker is having one or two tonight. I am shocked at this news. He is a mighty fine WR coach and will be hard to replace. I sure hope the ESPN reporter is wrong about Joker.

Tampa Gator

June 11th, 2014
7:33 pm

@Jeff

Been a rough year for sure for GatorNation. Again, just shocking news today about Joker.

Tampa Gator

June 11th, 2014
7:36 pm

@Wet Willie….

Hope the reporter has bad information.

@Rick

Saw that CHOMP CHOMP the other day as well. Nothing positive is going on for sure with Joker.

Gene

June 11th, 2014
8:42 pm

Joker ran a tight program at UK. I don’t think he would cheat.

C

June 11th, 2014
9:00 pm

Recruiting violations coming soon for the Gators. Joker is the fall guy for it.

BCB

June 11th, 2014
9:02 pm

Who cares? It’s the Gators.

Soldog

June 12th, 2014
1:39 am

Florida’s program — in disarray – they’ve gone way down – muschamp has 1 more year

woofer

June 12th, 2014
2:38 am

Man I’m loving this!

ShovelPlease

June 12th, 2014
6:24 am

I’m not sure how news of Florida wide receiver’s coach is going to affect UGA’s eternal road to the Outback Bowl.

JB

June 12th, 2014
6:28 am

Gator schedule is brutal. Don’t know if Will makes it, even with a better team this year.

Joe

June 12th, 2014
7:14 am

well well well….I said last year that Floriduh was back to being the old Floriduh we all knew for the 60 something years before 91…….but this really confirms it Floriduh back to their old cheatin ways too!

JOHN J

June 12th, 2014
7:19 am

Who cares what goes with the Gators. Muschamp is probably good for one more year. Joker s a fine coach. Hope the Gators are not making him a fall guy. Go Dawgs!!

Jay Cato

June 12th, 2014
7:21 am

This is blatant racism! If he were white, they would have given him a raise.

Flo-Ri-Duh

June 12th, 2014
8:06 am

Muschump is a traitor to the Dawg Nation. Bad mouths UGA with recruits & stated publicly that he wanted to go to Florida instead of UGA & being a UGA alumni means NOTHING to him. He’s not head coach material.

BeatDown

June 12th, 2014
10:06 am

when if florida’s AD going to come clean about why he ran off joker phillips? got to be some serious stuff going on for this coach to give up a $500,000 job all of a sudden for “personal reasons” and florida having to replace him with a former QB with no coaching experience.

Silly Bloggers

June 12th, 2014
12:56 pm

Not sure how Joker leaving is indicative of recruiting violations or somehow solidifies the argument that the Gators are done. Granted, it could be recruiting, but to immediately pass judgment on something like this is a bit premature. Now if Muschamp had stepped down, that would be news worthy and bad for the Dawg Nation. I like Muschamp right where he is at. A WR coach? I think UF will be okay. It isn’t as if their production from that position is actually going to go down as a result of it.

UGA Insider

June 12th, 2014
1:24 pm

Not sure yet about what happened in Gville but I do know about W Muschamp. First let me start by saying I think he is a great coach and a great recruiter…. Hopefully he will end up at UGA one day. But as for now he has massive pressure on him o beat his Alma matter this year. UF fans don’t have a memory prior to 1991 and they are not used to losing 3 in a row to UGA. 4 will be unacceptable to those spoiled sorry fans who don’t deserve Muschamp anyways. I am personally on record of saying Muschamp is my #1 favorite to replace CMR when that day comes. Followed closely by Pruitt.

UF sux and always will… Win or lose.

Tampa Gator

June 12th, 2014
1:40 pm

@UGA Insider

You mean, sucks (correct spelling for the meaning you are incorrectly implying) as in not winning a championship since 1980? Florida “sucked” in 1995, 2006, and 2008. My math does not suck. Math tells me Florida has won three national titles since 1980 and have not won another in the last 6 years. My math also tells me Georgia has not won a single national title since 1980 and it has been 34 long years since they have won one. I think that defines “sux” better that the first scenario. But I understand your hatred of such a program that “sux” so much. And, yes, it did suck losing to GSU and Vandy last year.

Tampa Gator

June 12th, 2014
1:42 pm

And Will Muschamp is never going to live in Athens again. More likely Gainesville for a long time. Pros maybe, but not Athens. And I am sure Pruitt has already been told he is the head coach in waiting at Georgia.

SoulMan

June 12th, 2014
2:05 pm

Georgia will lay another beatdown on fla this year–no worries. muschamp will keep his job somehow if he can get 7-8 wins, which should be doable with their easy schedule. GA will win the east this year, and play alabama for the title–anything can happen in that game.

DawgNole

June 12th, 2014
4:54 pm

UGA Insider
June 12th, 2014
1:24 pm
Not sure yet about what happened in Gville but I do know about W Muschamp . . . Hopefully he will end up at UGA one day . . . UF fans don’t have a memory prior to 1991 and they are not used to losing 3 in a row to UGA. 4 will be unacceptable to those spoiled sorry fans who don’t deserve Muschamp anyways.
______________________

Why would UGA want a traitor and avowed Dawg hater at the helm? Muschamp’s done very little of note except get bug-eyed on the sideline since his full-of-themselves bunch got clubbed by 17-point underdog Louisville–a disgraceful performance surpassed only by their subsequent losses to Vandy and Ga Southern. That’s right, Ga Southern! Shades of App St-Mich.

yard man

June 12th, 2014
6:00 pm

Gators going down hill BIG time…. Muschaump is NOT HC.. qualified….. Ga. Southern was the last straw !!!!!

Tampa Gator

June 12th, 2014
6:17 pm

Sure are a bunch of brilliant posters on here foaming at the mouth with total nonsense. Reported in Gainesville that Joker Phillips arranged and took a recruit to lunch during the recruiting dead period. While in the restaurant, someone from the University of Miami took a photo of him and the recruit and sent it to the NCAA. Joker played a joke on himself and it cost him his job. It is a major violation, and most likely Florida will be hit with a loss of a certain number of scholarships for a year. But, believe me, losing Joker and getting Leak will have little negative impact on the upcoming season for the Gators. Roper will work closely with Leak to make sure the WRs are getting the instruction they need for this season and during the season during game planning. Leak has a very sharp football mind and is a very hard worker. His knowledge of offense will help the receivers, and his championship background will mean a lot as well to the players. He will also be a very good recruiter, and most likely will avoid dead period lunches with recruits Not sure what Joker was thinking with his actions. Not thinking, I guess. His decision cost him a $500,000 a year job. Too bad, he is a good coach, but you have to follow the rules.

Two Bits

June 12th, 2014
8:51 pm

I wonder if Foley still is 1,000% behind his Boy Toy now. Further evidence that Muschamp is in over his head. Multiple poor personnel choices, and now, if true, a major NCAA violation. That won’t sit well with Foley. After a fourth consecutive humiliation in Jax, Muschamp finally will be shown the door. It can’t happen soon enough.

DawgNole

June 12th, 2014
9:09 pm

Hell, Two Bits, I hope he stays on awhile. Been fun beatin’ down his boys these past three seasons.

Two Bits

June 12th, 2014
9:29 pm

DawgNole, Muschamp is a collective 3-9 against LSU, UGA, FSU and South Carolina.

There are going to be a lot of long faces when Muschamp is sent packing.

MarkRicht

June 13th, 2014
12:04 am

Dear Jeremy Foley:

Please keep will muschamp at florida for many years—give him a big raise, large bonus and a long-term contract extension.

Your buddy—-Mark Richt

Tampa Gator

June 13th, 2014
11:10 am

Mark Richt is not Foley’s buddy. Foley is way too smart. And Muschamp will get the job done at Florida, starting this year. Tons of talent on the Florida roster and even more on the way. And tons of good coaches as well, including Roper, Summers, and the new WR coach, Chris Leak. But have you fun while you can.