(SportsNetwork.com) - The University of Florida has reportedly hit a stumbling block in its attempt to make Colorado State's Jim McElwain its new head football coach due to a buyout clause in his current contract.
Under the terms of his pact with Colorado State, McElwain would have to pay the school $7.5 million to be released from the contract and take over at Florida. According to a report from the Orlando Sentinel, Colorado State has offered strong resistance to reducing that number.
"CSU has not budged an inch on the buyout," a source told the newspaper on Wednesday.
McElwain, a former offensive coordinator at Alabama who guided the Rams to a 10-2 record this season, has emerged as the Gators' first choice to replace the fired Will Muschamp.
The buyout sum remains a significant hurdle, however, especially since Florida just paid Muschamp over $6 million in money owed over his contract.
According to the Sentinel, the gap between the two schools is sizeable enough that Florida officials have become skeptical of a deal being reached. The newspaper also stated that previous reports that McElwain had a meeting with his players to inform them that he is leaving were untrue.
On Wednesday, the Florida sports information department did confirm that athletic director Jeremy Foley flew to Fort Collins to interview with McElwain and negotiate with him about the position.
"We've had very productive conversations with Coach McElwain and his wife Karen and those continue," read the statement.
McElwain, the 2014 Mountain West Coach of the Year, was awarded a three-year extension through 2019 by Colorado State in August. He has amassed a 22-16 record over three seasons as the Rams' head coach and guided the program to eight wins -- including a victory in the New Mexico Bowl -- in 2013.
The 52-year-old also fits the profile of the offensively oriented coach Foley publicly stated he was seeking to replace the defensive-minded Muschamp. Colorado State ranks seventh in FBS in passing offense (326.3) and has averaged 497.8 total yards per game this season.