Florida’s Will Muschamp brings energy & new ideas to Gators


Watch Florida coach Will Muschamp speak at SEC Media Days 2011

Florida quarterback John Brantley offered an analysis of the new Gator coach at SEC Media Days.

“He’s very intense,” the Florida Gators’ quarterback said. “You’ve seen him on highlights at Texas, chest bumping his players. He’s a great coach, great defensive coach. Great intensity, and he’s brought that to the team. We needed that, that giddy up.”

Wide receiver Deonte Thompson said Florida football coach Will Muschamp agreed with that analysis.

“He’s more energetic. He’ll get out on the field, run with us, work out with us sometimes,” Thompson said.

Florida defensive end William Green offered his thoughts on Muschamp: “He’s big about doing things ‘The Florida Way,’ playing hard, running to the ball. He’s a bit more intense, more of a defensive mind.”

The defensive mind was influenced by former Alabama defensive coordinator and Auburn coach Bill Oliver. Muschamp served as a graduate assistant under Oliver at Auburn and this influenced the young coach. Oliver taught Muschamp “that you can have some imagination on defense.” Muschamp was a graduate assistant at Auburn during the tenure of Auburn coach Terry Bowden.

“You know, you look back at some of the combination coverages we’re playing now, we were doing back then with him. Some of the zone fire principles that Dom Capers was doing, Bill Oliver was doing on the college level,” Florida coach Will Muschamp said. “Think back to ’92, in the Alabama game in the Sugar Bowl, the defensive game plan was pretty phenomenal to beat the Miami team that they won.”

And Muschamp detailed what he learned from current Alabama Crimson Tide coach Nick Saban. Muschamp said Saban taught im the value of “total program management.” This ranges from recruiting to the integration of offensive and defensive philosophies and even includes player accountability.

Muschamp went on to explain, “Philosophically, what you believe offensively, defensively, and special teams, being tied together on both sides of the ball for what you want to be. Not having two separate units for what they are, which some teams do that.”

Muschamp had some nice things to say about Saban as a professional.

“I had a great working relationship with Nick,” Muschamp said. “He’s very smart, detail oriented, very organized in what he wants to do, the vision he sees for his program. That’s a credit to him.”

As for running his own program, Muschamp promises to be involved on the defensive coaching and let his offensive coordinator run the offense.

“I feel like you’ve got to lend your strengths, that’s going to be coaching on the defensive side of the ball, coaching on special teams,” Muschamp said. “I hired Charlie to run the offense. I’ve got great confidence in what he’s going to do, what we want to be offensively, what I’ve identified we want to be offensively to be successful.”