University of Florida

Ex-UF coach McElwain lost $400,000 selling his Gainesville home. He had a good reason

Florida head coach Jim McElwain, right, walks the sidelines during a timeout in the second half of an NCAA college football game against Georgia on Oct. 28, 2017, in Jacksonville. Georgia won 42-7.
Florida head coach Jim McElwain, right, walks the sidelines during a timeout in the second half of an NCAA college football game against Georgia on Oct. 28, 2017, in Jacksonville. Georgia won 42-7. AP

The news came out in late March that former Florida Gators Jim McElwain sold his Gainesville house for $1.4 million — $400,000 less than what he paid for it in 2015.

Here’s the reason it was sold for such a discounted price, according to the Tampa Bay Times’ Matt Baker: He was helping a local family with two disabled children.

According to the Times’ story, Rick Staab met McElwain and his wife Karen a few months earlier at a charity event held at the McElwains’ 5,600-square-foot home that contains open rooms, wide doorways and ramps.

When the Staabs decided a couple months ago that they needed to move from their two-story house, he thought it would be the perfect place for his family considering the circumstances. Their oldest son, 20-year-old Tyler, has a neurological disease called dystonia that bounds him to a wheelchair. Their 17-year-old daughter Samantha has shown symptoms of the disease as well and at times has trouble walking, the Times reported.

The McElwains initially rejected the offer. When they heard it was the Stabbs who wanted to buy the house, they figured out a deal that worked for both of them.

“The McElwains have a good heart,” Daurine Wehbe, the Staabs’s realtor, told the Times. “No one knows that. No one appreciates that.”

The Gators fired McElwain in late October, midway through his third season at UF, amid a losing season and heat surrounding the program after McElwain claimed to have received death threats but would not substantiate the claims. He went 22-12 in two-plus seasons at Florida. He is now the wide receivers coach at the University of Michigan.

The full story from the Times can be read here.

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