Florida’s Ron Roberts will serve as executive head coach, co-defensive coordinator and linebackers coach. Roberts was coaching drills Saturday. The Florida Gators held their second Spring football practice at Sanders Practice Fields in Gainesville, FL on Saturday, March 9, 2024. [Doug Engle/Gainesville Sun]

Florida Co-Defensive Coordinator Roberts Seeking Balance For Players

Ron Roberts enters his first season at Florida as the Gators’ co-defensive coordinator and linebackers coach after joining the team in January.

Roberts’ experience of more than 30 years makes him more than qualified as a coach for the Gators. He came from Auburn, where he was the defensive coordinator.

His “first love” has always been defense, which he’s most familiar with. He is comfortable with the depth and quality of his coaching abilities.

Roberts opens up about being influenced by his coaches growing up. Being pushed to excel on and off the field is an example of how his coaches helped him succeed. This is the standard of how he wants to be with his players.

Moving On

Coming to Florida to work alongside coach Billy Napier was a decision he had to make, Roberts said. He was convinced Napier’s organization, structure and authenticity brought him to The Swamp. Napier’s best interest at heart for the players determined the move for Roberts. Being a part of the future of football is important to him.

As the 2024 season creeps up, Roberts is encouraged and positive about this year’s linebackers room. A mixture of seasoned and fresh players compose the group and he sees their determination for this new season. The players’ character and work ethic make it a pleasure to work with them, Roberts said.

Changing Game

The new integration of helmet pieces for signals will change the game for UF football as well as the defensive side of the ball. Having direct communication with the linebackers and safeties will give them the ability to make checks on the spot. Roberts believes the helmet pieces will, in a way, put the coach on the field.

Implementing this new technology will facilitate field communication, but there needs to be an emphasis on the preseason in order to make things work, he said. Precision is important for Roberts, as well as the significance of fundamentals and techniques. For this upcoming season, he has many ideas he will be implementing for the players’ benefit.

Roberts wants his players focused on and off the field. Balance is key for high performance and Roberts will make sure of that for the fall.

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