Former and current Florida Gators react to the dismissal of head coach Will Muschamp

By Adam Silverstein
November 17, 2014

A number of former and current Florida Gators spoke out on social media on Sunday following the dismissal of head coach Will Muschamp.

Reactions were mixed overall, though all of Muschamp’s players were supportive of him with some wondering out loud about their future. Former Gators without connections to Muschamp seemed pleased that a change was being made but also respected his ability to contribute at another program.

Check out the rest of the reactions…after the break!


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28 Comments

  1. Ken (CA) says:

    Pretty clear the players loved him. Any word on how this was communicated to the team? Was there a team meeting? Did he address them?

    • They had a meeting. I assume he was there.

    • Michael J. says:

      They had a poor way of showing their love. They had plenty of opportunities, but their performance on the field was far from even being compassionate. The defense, again, laid down when the game was on the line. It’s not too much to ask to stop a team from going 34 yards in 39 seconds or to show any kind of fight in overtime. They meekly laid down. You can say you love someone, but actions speak much louder than words, and these players have shown they only talk a good game.

    • Steven says:

      Comments seem pretty typical for any coach that is fired.
      Not saying they didn’t love him. Just that this is pretty commonplace

  2. Will says:

    They had a brief team mtg at 1 on Sunday. Coach Champ handled it with the class and dignity he has shown throughout. He said it came down to production, and they didn’t produce. Felt he was given full opportunity and was thankful.

    Personally, I’m one who wishes it worked for him.

    • senuod says:

      +1 Here. He’ll be a good head coach one day. Unfortunately he had to learn via trial by fire. Our losses and misfortunes will be someone else’s benefit soon.

      He’s going to be a well paid DC very soon.

    • ryan v says:

      Hey Will,
      Thanks for the info. Stay positive. We are glad to have you as a gator. you will have your time to shine.

    • Steven says:

      We all wished it worked. We are all gator fans and want to see the team be successful.
      This move came one year too late probably only because Muschamp seems like such a good guy.

      But please don’t anyone go feeling bad for him. He was very well paid and will be receiving an additional $6M while coaching elsewhere. I hear FSU might need a DC. Imagine if that happens. How will you all feel about him then?
      They took a program from the top and ran them into the ground in 4 short years.

      • senuod says:

        I doubt he goes to the ACC when there are several other SEC teams in dire need of a good DC. That, and I’m sure he could get a job on an NFL team as well.

        FSU is not the most widely renowned program out there. We all have ideas and can speculate on the leeway given to players there all in the name of winning games. We all know Muschamp isn’t like that, for better or worse.

      • Michael J. says:

        FSU has a defensive coordinator. Anyway, you never hire a former head coach of a rival. It just isn’t done. Assistants, it happens all the time, but head coach, never.

  3. Sharon M says:

    Well, it is a little sad. Gators showed what their potential was against Georgia, but one good game isn’t enough. I am all for this change.

  4. Rakkasan says:

    It’s great they all loved him, and that he was like a father to them, but the reality is that’s not the primary role of a head football coach. At UF we should be able to compete for championships every year, and under Muschamp UF has sunk to its lowest level in decades. I don’t understand why the players don’t get this, that there is a direct correlation between a coach’s win loss record and keeping his job.

    I’m sure the players are going to miss him which is human nature, but maybe if they had blocked a little better, committed few penalties, and caught a few more passes they would have won last Saturday and “Champ” would still be their coach. This is something the players need to take ownership of. I’m hopeful their next coach will be more of a coach and less of a daddy.

  5. Mark Davis says:

    The Gators’ just lost a good coach who was building a solid program and knew that good teams would be a product of that strategy if given enough time. Unfortunately, short-term success on the field is preferred to a solid program by most fans who care more about their entertainment than the lives of the young men who give their all for UF. Now the UAA can hire some hotshot to come in and win for a couple of seasons while running the program into the ground ala Meyer. Good luck with that.

    • LegoGator says:

      Short term? In 4 years his SEC record play was nothing but mediocre. I think he was given more than enough time.

      It’s a shame he never let his OC do his job. If he did that, he would have kept his job.

    • Ken (CA) says:

      Really? While WM is gone and I don’t see the point of all these “piling on” posts on this article, I also guess I am missing the point of yours on the other side. How long do you give him? It has been 4 years, 99% of the players are his players, maybe 100% now that he kicked Orr off the team (Well, not 100%, Debose is still here, too).

      No one is going for a short term “fix”, and I certainly hope and doubt Foley is thinking that way at all. Every hire, including Meyer was hoping for a decade + tenure, not a few years and off to somewhere else. I doubt this hire will be any different. UF is a destination, not a stepping stone position. How many years do you give for “long term” success? Ultimately he needs to win games, and he wasn’t doing that, and a considerable portion of the blame for that falls on his own philosophy as much as the lack of execution.

      I don’t see how it isn’t completely clear that a change was absolutely needed that UF football was not going to have long term on-field success with WM as the head coach, no matter what he did in the other areas of the program. He was too stubborn and set in his philosophy even when it clearly wasn’t working.

    • Steven says:

      Ya, the last thing we want is another Meyer.
      I would hate to win 2 NCs and be nationally relevant.

  6. SW FL Joe says:

    Only at Bama can you fire the players. Everywhere else you have to fire the coach.

  7. 305Gator says:

    Spare me the “good guy” routine and the “takes time”bit. I am sure Muschamp is a good guy, a class act. I know he cleaned up the off the field mess left over from Meyer. and it seems most players, at least those quoted, respect and like the guy.
    We need a coach that can win consistently, we don’t need a good guy. By all accounts Saban is a terrible person a big time arrogant pain in the arse, noy a good guy. But he can sure win football games.
    Dude had 4 years, that is plenty of time. And the team got worse every year. Stuck with Driskel for too long, played scared and not to lose, and could not figure out how to play offense.
    I am glad he is gone and looking forward to his replacement putting us back on top where we belong.
    Don’t feel bad for him, 7 mil reasons not to. Besides he will land a DC job soon enough, that is what he is very good at.

  8. Michael Jones says:

    The players come from a different place. I would expect them to be supportive of their coach, but as much as I hate to say it, a lot of what Michael J. said is the truth. They quit more than once on him and other than momentary glimpses of passion and the UGA game, they didn’t really show their love on the field.

    For those of you who keep talking about the “great program” Muschamp ran because the players went to class and didn’t get arrested that often, I disagree that those are such lofty achievements. Players are supposed to go to class and they’re supposed to not get arrested. That’s a bare minimum thing, not some barely attainable goal.

    We can have a head coach who knows how to coach a complete football game and can recruit, AND, at the same time, also have players who go to class and don’t get arrested. Those concepts aren’t mutually exclusive so stop acting like we can only have one or the other.

    • 305Gator says:

      Come on Mike you don’t have to give credit to your namesake undercover nole. All the players can do is execute the game plan. The offensive play calling has been well, offensive. I cannot fault the defense when they are constantly been put in bad situations due to the boring, predictable and pathetic offense. Remember the stat that Muschamp has the only two teams in college football to ever lose a game when giving up 250 yards a game or less. 2 out of 147 times in the history of college football.
      For the most part the players did what they could do with the hand they were dealt.

      • Michael Jones says:

        Uhhhhhh. . . . no. We don’t lose to Georgia Southern nor the way we lost to Vandy last year without the players quitting. I was there. I saw the level of disinterest. No need to protect them, if that’s what you’re trying to do, because I put that on Muschamp as well.

        As for the cryptic “namesake” comment, I have no idea what that means or what you’re trying to say so I’ll just blow that one off.

  9. luigi says:

    Did not like his demeanor on the sideline and thought it was an embarrassment to the Gator Nation. Liked less the boring game plan. And even less the losing. The loser attitude is on display with these comments from the team. I mean, Jeez, we’re the Gators! Hope the first phone call is to the Ol’ Ball Coach…he likes and knows how to win bu doesn’t have the players in SC.

    • Michael Jones says:

      Come on, luigi, you don’t think that a raging lunatic with wild crazy eyes 24/7 and neck veins bulging and a forehead that looks like it’s about to burst while he’s cursing out the officials or staring down our players like it’s all he can do to stop himself from ripping their throats out is a positive image for our program?

      I don’t either. And a lot of Gators I know who don’t comment on this site feel the same way.

      (here is where all the internet tough guys explain what a hard sport football is and how it’s not for sissies and how they love a coach who “shows emotion”. . . but there’s emotion, and then there’s Muschamp. . and the big time winners–including the ones who throw their visors–don’t act like that)

  10. mjGator says:

    You will always hear from the supportive players, and players who want to show support for the program and not disrespect their embattled coach. However, based upon my observations, the players never looked like they loved and respected Champ. Do you all remember the multiple transfers who all announced at the same time last year? Do you remember Taylor’s dissatisfied tweets about transferring? Many of the players made it known on campus that they didn’t like him. It’s easy to feel sorry for Champ because he’s leaving after a horrific stint as our head coach, but let’s not forget the sad state of affairs that this once powerful program is in because of poor coaching and, like luigi said above, his embarrassing conduct. C’mon guys, our once-dominant Gators are 9-13 in our last 22 games, and we’ve lost 6 of our last 8 at home (beating only Eastern Michigan and Kentucky in triple overtime). That is not ok. Champ has shuffled through 3 offensive coordinators in the last 4 years, 3 offensive line coaches in the last 4 years, and 4 receiver coaches in the last 4 years. That is not only unacceptable, but it’s not fair to our players. And as Michael Jones and others have pointed out many times here, the offensive scheme looks similarly predictable and ineffective throughout all of those changes. Coach Muschamp will pack up with another 7 million dollars and move on to a more manageable position somewhere else. No thanks for the memories. I’m sure he’s a nice guy, and I don’t doubt his passion for the game, but let’s not forget where we are and where we need to be.

  11. aziatic41 says:

    -mjGator

    I totally agree with you. Well said.

  12. Ib-beastin-urmoms says:

    Well… All the armchair coaches and AD’s got what they wanted. Where’s all the answers ? Who’s the next coach?. The realistic coach not a pipe dream or a wish. Every player on this team would run through a brick wall head first, for Will. Thank you Coach Boom for all you have done with the program and the way you have touched these young men’s lives. Go Gators…..

    • Steven says:

      Ha.
      Unfortunately you don’t play any brick walls in the SEC.

    • mjGator says:

      You must really hate change. Being a good guy and a motivator doesn’t make you a good coach. Look no further than his overall record, our home record, recruiting rankings, the transfers, the revolving door of assistant coaches, etc. Maybe “Coach Boom” should stick to special teams. Oh wait, we had 2 blocked to lose the USC game . . . maybe not.

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