Dan Mullen was once the guy many Tennessee fans wanted to hire after Butch Jones left. I found that out the hard way after I tweeted, “Dan Mullen? A guy that’s won nothing? Where has Miss St. recruiting finished?” in response to a fan/reporter telling me his first call after Jon Gruden would be Mullen. Obviously, Mullen is now at Florida and Pruitt at Tennessee, but it looks more and more like I could be right about Mullen.
On July 23, a talented, four-star, wide receiver named Mycah Pittman committed to the University of Oregon over Florida. At first glance, you’d think it’s just another receiver out of a ton of them out there. However, when you dive into how it really went down, it looks bad for Mullen.
First, Oregon is obviously not a passing juggernaut, so it’s not like this young man believes his stats could be worlds above if he’d gone to Florida. So, the next problem could have been he’s from the West Coast and Oregon was simply closer. “The distance is no issue,” Pittman replied when asked about the matter. “I lived in Florida for a long time, since my dad (Michael Pittman) played for the Bucs. I lived in Florida for 10 years.”
Another very weird thing Pittman claimed after a recruiting visit to Florida was the staff of the Gators recruited by negatively talking about their current wide receivers. Four-Stars Jacob Copeland and Justin Watkins committed to the Gators last year and Pittman said the coaches talked about how the young players are having a hard time picking up the playbook and that’s why there’s plenty of playing time available.
Currently, the Florida Gators have 11 players committed with four 4-stars and seven three-stars in their 2019 class. I know it’s early, but to that same respect, first-year coach Jeremy Pruitt has 14 commitments, including one five-star and six four-stars at Tennessee, a harder place to recruit since you have to go outside the state for maximum talent.
Mullen was a success at Mississippi State without the stars in recruiting, so this might not be a bad sign for the Gators. Even so, it’s hard to look past the corny things Mullen is doing on the recruiting trail. It’s either him wearing Jordans with dress clothes or finger-mouthing like kids with grills do in selfie photos. Florida coaches shouldn’t have to do that. They’re in a hotbed of recruiting and storied programs.