Muschamp disagrees with Tebow, says Florida Gators have leaders on offense

By Adam Silverstein
November 3, 2014

In his new role as a college football analyst for ESPN and the SEC Network, former Florida Gators quarterback Tim Tebow not only needs to be honest but also unbiased. Certainly Tebow will lean toward Florida on many issues – and be summoned when a strong opinion on the Gators is needed – but he has also gone out of his way to do his homework and be as credible a voice as possible in his first year on the job.

Over the last few weeks, during appearances on ESPN, the SEC Network and Jacksonville, Florida, radio station 1010 XL, Tebow has opined plenty about Florida and the situation the program found itself in entering the Georgia game.

He asked fans to stop booing the Gators, discussed how Florida got to the situation it was in two weeks ago following consecutive home losses to unranked Southeastern Conference opponents, and even offered some advice for freshman QB Treon Harris, who started against the Georgia Bulldogs on Saturday and ultimately helped lead the Gators to a 38-20 upset victory.

During some of these media hits, including on the SEC Network pre-game Saturday show SEC Nation, Tebow explained what he thought what was wrong with the Gators’ offense.


“Offensively, I don’t think they have an identity. I don’t think they have a leader that is taking people together saying let’s do our job, focus on doing your job, getting better and making everyone around them better,” he said. “To [be successful], they have to find a way to score points, and they have to have better leadership offensively.”

It appears as if head coach Will Muschamp heard that statement loud and clear.

Following Saturday’s victory, Muschamp discussed that very topic in his post-game press conference. And though he did not reference Tebow’s statements directly, it is obvious that he strongly disagreed with Tebow’s opinion on the matter.

“Don’t mistake leadership and effort for production, because you can be playing really hard [and not produce],” he began. “Max Garcia is one of the best leaders as a football coach I’ve ever been around. We have good leadership on our team. When you don’t have production, the easiest thing for everybody to say is, ‘They don’t play hard, they don’t play like they used to play, or they don’t have any leadership.’ Well, that’s not true. We got to have production. We got some production [Saturday night]. We got a bunch of great leaders in there that played really hard. So don’t get those things confused.”

Muschamp instead chalked Florida’s offensive problems up to confidence and tentativeness. He believes the success the Gators’ had on Saturday will bleed over into the remainder of the season and get UF on the track it should have been on all along.

“We need to practice well, we need to prepare the right way, and I think our players will. They always do. I don’t see that being an issue,” he said.

Whether Muschamp alerted his players to those comments from Tebow on leadership – or they found out that Tebow picked against his alma mater (for the first time this season) on Saturday’s edition of SEC Nation – a couple of Gators took to Twitter to let Tebow know they were none-too-pleased with either of those comments.

At least two tweets, consisting solely of multiple frown-faced emoji icons, were sent by Florida players to Tebow late Saturday night.

Like any analyst, Tebow will have his words picked apart. Chances are the Gators, if they did at all, used Tebow’s words for motivation. After all, he did say a number of glowing things in support of the players and coaches over the last couple of weeks.

Minutes after telling Florida fans not to boo the players or coaches one week ago, Tebow offered up this in support of Muschamp.

“I think the University of Florida team has a lot of talent. I think they have a lot of good coaches. I don’t think they’ve played up to their potential. I think this team has a chance to be pretty good. Right now, they have the number three defense in the SEC,” he said.

“I also know Will Muschamp, when he was at Auburn, he had one of the best game plans I’ve ever played against in college. This guy knows how to coach. A few years ago, they went to the Sugar Bowl; they were 12-1. He knows how to lead a team. He knows how to be successful.”

24 Comments

  1. Steven says:

    Great win, but if this bought Muschamp an extra year I would have rather lost.
    We threw the ball 6 times. This isn’t a sustainable formula.
    How Georgia never stacked the box and dared us to throw is beyond me.

    • Joe says:

      Georgia had 9 players in the box in the second half and we still ran down their throats. There is and never will be a reason to throw the football when you can gain first downs consistently against 9 man looks. It was demoralizing for their defense. Period.

    • 5wideU says:

      You clearly didn’t go to the game or watch in much detail. GA was loading the box the whole second half and still couldn’t stop us. I agree we won’t be able to win every game throwing only 6 times and I seriously doubt the coaching staff does either … but why stop running the ball with the lead when the other team can’t stop you ?? It would have been idiotic to start throwing the ball around in that game.

        • Mark Davis says:

          I’ll tell you how long its been since “we” have seen the top 25, that would be Week 7 (week of October 13) when the Gators were ranked 22nd after loosing 17-6 to LSU to go 4-2; in Week 6 the Gators were 4-1 after beating Arkansas. So it’s been just over one year. I guess your memory isn’t so good, so you probably forgot that the Gators were ranked No. 3 at the end of the 2012 regular season with an 11-1 record and would have been in the playoff if they had 4 teams like they do now. Considering the number of injuries early on last year it was amazing that Coach Muschamp was able to keep the Gators competitive for as long as he did last year. This year the Gators do beat Georgia for the first time, actually gave them a historic beat-down, so that would indicate improvement, no? I’ll take a dominant pound and ground game only throwing it six times every week if needed; however, as Coach Muschamp has said several times, they can and will let Treon throw it more when he needs to. Only an idiot would throw it when he didn’t need to (like Saturday against Georgia). Coach Muschamp has had a Top Ten recruiting class every year and will again this year after he goes on a nice win streak making all the haters STFU and stop dragging the program down. Luckily Foley has a better memory and understands the big picture better than the whinny, spoiled Muschamp haters.

        • 5wideU says:

          Wow … you picked one play 3 minutes into the 2nd half to prove your point ? Guess I’ll counter that with the Taylor 65-yard TD with 2 minutes left in the game. The point is they were rolling up a safety into the box more times then not in the 2nd half and still couldn’t stop anything.

          I’m not sold on Muschamp either but the point is fans like you who can’t even enjoy an ass-whipping against our arch rival are pretty sad. Please jump on the Nole bandwagon for everyones sake.

          • Joe says:

            All the proof necessary, next subject please…

            “They didn’t have to really take many chances,” Richt said. “They were able to keep the ball on the ground. …

            “We never put them in a position where they had to throw the ball, quite frankly, so I don’t blame them for only throwing it six times.”

  2. scroud says:

    Yeah, I was wondering the same thing when we played LSU and they threw it what, 8 times?

  3. Mark Davis says:

    Dominating the line of scrimmage and playing smash mouth football is a sustainable formula. If you had ever strapped on some shoulder pads and a helmet you would understand this. Throwing the ball all over the field is fun to watch and easy for those who grew up playing in their back yards to relate to, but it is much more difficult to sustain over the long run. You can scheme to confuse QBs, change and disguise coverages, and come up with blitz packages to stop even the best passing games (did you see the Patriots shut down Peyton Manning Sunday?), but when the other team just lines up, pushes you off the line of scrimmage and runs it down your throat, there is nothing you can do to stop it. Ask Georgia. That you don’t realize Georgia actually did stack the box is telling.

    • Steven says:

      I’m sorry, but they didn’t stack the box. They routinely had their safeties back and had 3 CBs on the receivers.
      The one time they did was on Kelvin’s run really late when they were playing a defacto goal line defense. Once he broke the line he was gone.

      Watch the replays on the big runs and how me when they had 9 guys in the box. Never.
      The routinely had 6-7 guys.

      • Mark Davis says:

        Georgia tried everything, including stacking the box, and it didn’t work (nor did anything else because they were getting totally dominated on the line of scrimmage). So when you say you “kept waiting for Georgia to stack the box”, this infers that they never did, which is demonstrably false. Saying that they did actually stack the box doesn’t mean that they did every play; if they had, then the Gators would have thrown it over the top.

  4. Kurt says:

    You actually wrote that you wanted the Gators to lose?! Wow!!!!! Any individual who wants the Gators to lose is not a Gator fan at all. When Foley brings Muschamp back next year after we beat FSU, please get so upset you never call yourself a Gator ever again. FSU will need someone to then bitch about how poor a job Fisher did by losing to the Gators. Sounds like you fit that role perfectly.

    • Who are you talking about?

    • Steven says:

      Again hopefully Foley is smart enough to realize in year 4 that winning 6-7 games isn’t where we need to be.
      If he wins out I’ll give him another year, but you all are showing your recency bias.
      Look at the whole picture and it shows Muschamp is garbage

    • Steven says:

      So let me get this straight.
      We won 4 games last year.
      Lost to Vandy at home. Lost to Ga Southern at home.
      Have been losing almost all the impact recruits to FSU.
      We currently have 0 of the 20 something 4 or 5 star players in Florida committed to us.
      Non-competitive vs Bama and Mizzou.
      Have set many record lows in during his tenure.
      Haven’t seen the top 25 in I don’t know how long.
      But since he beat Georgia 1 out of 4 times in a game where we threw 6 passes we should bring him back.

      I hope Foley and you enjoy a future full of Music City Bowls(in the years we actually win 6 games).

      • Razzlegator says:

        So let ME get this straight. You wish we lost to GEORGIA? Let’s play charades. Two words. First one starts with f, and the second one ends in u.

        • Bill says:

          Nope my wish is that this win doesn’t get Muschamp another year.
          If you think this is rock bottom just give him more time

  5. 5wideU says:

    Tebow actually picked Bama as well on the SEC gameday so picking GA wasn’t the first time. I think Tim’s doing a great job being objective in his role and have agreed with most of his thoughts. I think he may have been referring to the QB position to a certain extent when talking about a lack of leadership on offense. Clearly, that’s been a huge issue since Tebow left. We probably shouldn’t expect a leader like him again anytime in the future but it would be nice to have an alpha male at QB again at some point.

    • 305Gator says:

      I think you nailed it and that leadership issue has been solved once Driskel was benched. You can’t be a leader when your performance on the field stinks, no matter if you are a “good guy” if your play sucks you will not be able to lead.

  6. Aligator says:

    This was the kind of game that Muschamp loved! He didn’t have to pass the ball and that is what he would love to game plan like every game. After watching SC implode now, I can see us finishing up 7-3, maybe winning the Dookie bowl, end up at 8-4 and be stuck with him another year, confident in his system. He is and always will be an idiot and welcome to our new reality.

    I love the fact we won, but man do I have disdain for Muschump.

  7. Michael Jones says:

    I guess we’ll know soon enough if that style of play is sustainable in the SEC (as if the last 4 years haven’t already taught us. . but I understand that true believers are also gluttons for punishment).

    It was a super win. Loved every minute of it. But he is not the coach for the Florida Gators. Man I hope I’m wrong!!! But I’m pretty sure that reality will come crashing back down upon us any Saturday now. Nothing less than winning out will change my mind.

    And I don’t want to hear about “playing (over-rated) FSU close” or how there was no shame in losing to Bama the way we did, etc., etc. This Gator isn’t ready to lower his standards that much.

    But, in all kinds of weather, we’ll all stick together, for F-L-O-R-I-D-A!! GO GATORS!!!

    P.S. Anybody hear from big mouth Michael J. this week? lol. Guess he crawled back under that Tally rock he crawled out from. If some of you are right, and I hope you are, then he’s probably sweating about another Tally beat down!!!

  8. Michael Jones says:

    What’s up with Muschamp’s wild-eyed expressions 24/ 7? He looks like he’s about to sucker punch Tebow. He always looks like that. Man that dude looks like he’s wound tight!

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