Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Miller's Time: No Decision on LB Coach Joining Zook

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Miller's Time: No Decision on LB Coach Joining Zook

Article excerpt

Byline: Michael DiRocco, The Times-Union

ATLANTA -- Florida linebackers coach Bill Miller isn't a lock to join former UF coach Ron Zook at Illinois.

Zook has offered Miller a position on his staff, but Miller said Wednesday that he is examining other options as well before making a decision about his future.

"I haven't made a final decision on that yet," Miller said as the Gators continued preparations for Friday's Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl against Miami at the Georgia Dome. "I may have a decision here before the game."

Miller said he was mulling over offers from other colleges and NFL teams, though he declined to say which schools or teams. He said he didn't want to accept a job at Illinois immediately after Zook offered it because he wanted to make sure that was the best opportunity for him.

"I have some goals that I want to accomplish as well," Miller said. "I don't want to take that job [at Illinois] then have to leave a short time later. I won't do that to Ron. He was good to me, hiring me when I didn't have a job. I owe him a lot."

Offensive coordinator Larry Fedora, offensive line coach Joe Wickline and secondary coach Dan Disch, former longtime White High coach, will join Zook at Illinois.

CROWDER LIKE LEWIS

Miller was Miami's defensive coordinator from 1995-98, and he said UF linebacker Channing Crowder reminds him of former Hurricanes linebacker Ray Lewis, who is now regarded by many as the best defensive player in the NFL.

"There actually is a lot of similarities," Miller said. "He's a lot heavier than Ray was. Ray played at about 225 [pounds] and now he's 250-something. The greatest thing both of them have going for them is they love to play and they have a great, great passion for playing the game and they play it the way it's meant to [be played]."

Said Crowder, who will not start on Friday because he missed the past three games with a foot injury: "I don't think I compare to Ray Lewis, but it's an honor to be mentioned in the same sentence with him. …

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