Florida parted ways with Jim McElwain, after nearly three seasons as the Gators head coach on Sunday. Names have already been tossed around for the vacant job, but ESPN college football analyst Paul Finebaum said there isn’t a perfect fit for the job.

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“I think Scott Frost is certainly — probably — the hottest name at the moment,” said Finebaum on Jox 94.5 FM in Alabama. “You’ll hear Charlie Strong because of his ties to Florida. Undoubtedly, you’ll hear Dan Mullen.

“Mississippi State head coach Dan Mullen’s name is in the mix because of his relationship with Florida athletic director Scott Stricken, who was previously at MSU.”

Mullen served as Florida’s offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach from 2005-08, before taking over the reigns at MSU in 2009. Mullen is in his ninth season at MSU and has a record of 67-44 in his tenure.

“Dan Mullen came up a lot the last time,” Finebaum said, “and some reported that there was a little bit of a rub between Jeremy Foley and Dan Mullen, but Scott Stricklin’s in a tough spot there. I don’t think he wants to be perceived as taking away Mullen from Mississippi State where he once worked and has many friends.

“But on the other hand — I’ve said this constantly and you guys have heard me, Dan Mullen is ready for a change. And every time I say that Mississippi State fans push back and say, ‘He doesn’t.’ But he’s been there a long time and this would be an opportunity. I think Dan Mullen would be on the shortlist at both Tennessee and Florida.”

McElwain is an offensive-minded coach, but his offenses never performed up to expectations at Florida. Finebaum believes they need to find another coach with a successful offensive background.

“I think you’ll see somebody that’s offensive minded, who can develop a quarterback, who understands that Florida has to deal with Miami to the South and Florida State to the Northwest,” he said. “Everyone is used to trying to keep up with Alabama, but if you’re Florida, forget Alabama.

“You need to keep up with Kirby Smart. Because Kirby Smart is blowing everyone away right now outside the man who resides in Tuscaloosa in recruiting. It’s just insane what he’s doing. Because Georgia is Florida’s biggest rival, they have to be able to keep up with them. Right now, they’re not.”