Donovan Adds Two Assistants

With the loss of all three assistant coaches, Florida head coach Billy Donovan didn't waste time finding replacements. Florida announced on Tuesday that Donovan is bringing on former head coaches John Pelphrey and Norm Roberts to fill two of the three open assistant coaching positions.

After losing all of the assistant coaches, it was important to bring in at least one assistant that's familiar with the program, and Pelphrey fits the bill. He was an assistant at Florida from 1996-2002, helping the Gators to a 124-65 record in that time. He was on staff when the Gators reached their first-ever national championship game in 2000, following a Sweet Sixteen appearance in 1999.

"Having John back will be a great addition to our program," Donovan said. "Obviously, he has a level of familiarity with me and with the University of Florida makes this a great fit. John's a great coach, he's a great friend and has a love for Florida, and we're excited to bring him back."

After he left Florida in 2002, Pelphrey served as the head coach at South Alabama from 2002-2007 before being named the head coach at Arkansas before 2007. He was fired after the 2010-2011 season ended after earning two NCAA Tournament trips in four years.

Pelphrey's time with Donovan goes beyond Florida, as he spent two seasons on Donovan's staff at Marshall. Before that, Pelphrey was a member of Eddie Sutton's coaching staff at Oklahoma State.

Roberts spent six seasons as the head coach at St. John's in New York. He was fired after the 2009-2010 season before the Red Storm hired Steve Lavin. He previously worked as an assistant coach and associate head coach under Bill Self at four different schools. Roberts started to work under Self at Oral Roberts (1995-1997), before heading to Tulsa (1997-2000). Roberts moved with Self to Illinois (2000-2003) before eventually working at Kansas (2003-2004) before taking the job at St. Johns.

"Being from New York, I've known Norm for a long time," Donovan said. "He's an outstanding coach, he's a great recruiter, has high character and integrity, and I'm thrilled to have him on our staff here at Florida."

There is still one remaining assistant coaching spot to be filled. Head assistant Larry Shyatt left to become the head coach at Wyoming. Rob Lanier and Richard Pitino have left the staff "to accept other positions." Lanier is expected to take the head assistant job at Texas where he previously worked over Rick Barnes, while Pitino is expected to join his father at Louisville.

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