11/4: Muschamp evaluates coaches, players following Florida’s third-straight loss to Georgia

By Adam Silverstein
November 4, 2013

Florida Gators head coach Will Muschamp met with the media on Monday to discuss his team’s 23-20 loss to the Georgia Bulldogs and upcoming home game game against the Vanderbilt Commodores on Saturday, Nov. 9. The homecoming contest will kick off at 12:08 p.m. and air live on FSN.


“Very proud of our players’ effort. You dig yourself a hole there in a game like that, continuing to fight and play with intensity and effort and creating some opportunities for yourself. Extremely proud of them battling through the game. …

“Disappointed, we need to finish. We had our opportunities late in the game and didn’t get it done. That falls on my shoulders. We got to get over the hump in those situations. We’ve had opportunities in several games going back to Miami and LSU and some opportunities to cut it and have a chance to win the game. And we just didn’t get it done. That’s on me. We’ll get our players to finish these situations and get over the hump and that’s’ what we’re going to do.”


Sophomore left tackle D.J. Humphries (MCL) remains sidelined but may return in a week or two. The Gators had no new injuries, according to Muschamp, though he did discuss how redshirt junior quarterback Tyler Murphy‘s shoulder ailment has bothered him over the last two games.

“The Missouri game it was a big effect. I don’t think there’s no question. He missed all week. He wouldn’t say it, but he was under a lot of pain going into the game. I certainly think it’s improved from there as far as the wear and tear in the game and taking some shots, obviously. But it has affected him. He won’t say it, but it does,” he explained.


» Freshman running back Kelvin Taylor: “He’s done very well. That’s been the step forward. Talked to Fred [Taylor] about it on Friday. As far as his protection and things are concerned, he’s done a much better job with those things.“

» Junior cornerback Loucheiz Purifoy: “I thought he played well. … The sack was obviously a huge play, he came free on it. I think he’s continued to progress as the season and play well. I think the wrist obviously slowed him down. It was a little bit more serious than people know. He’s coming around and continuing to improve and play well.”

» Freshman wide receiver Ahmad Fulwood: “He’s going to be a good football player, just got to continue to play fast and block well on the perimeter. Did a nice job for us. He’s going to be a really good player. I think he played 28-30 snaps, so he’s continuing to get more snaps as we move forward.”

» Inside linebackers sophomore Antonio Morrison and redshirt junior Michael Taylor: “I think [Morrison’s] done a decent job. He missed some tackles on Saturday and that’s uncharacteristic for him. … I think Antonio’s been steady. I think we put a lot on the Mike linebacker as far as directing our defense and front-wise and movement and things we do. He’s got a lot on his plate. I think Mike [Taylor]’s done a nice job when he’s slid there and played in the middle, which is more of his natural position. I think I’ve been pretty pleased with the steady play of them. I think it’s a little unfair at times, especially in the Missouri game, it’s hard to play when we don’t play well up front and you don’t play blocks. It’s very difficult. Our front played better the other day as far as playing blocks and keeping them off the second level.”

» Junior right tackle Trenton Brown: “I thought we improved, and I thought Trenton did some nice things. He’s a big man; he’s a large body. … They had him one time on the hold, which was a good call. … For a first start going in that environment, I thought he played well.”


» On Florida getting off to slow starts defensively: “I think it certainly has impacted the games as far as how we’ve relied on our defense in obvious situations. But you don’t put your finger on one thing and say, ‘It’s this.’ … Those first two drives were just extremely disappointing. We just got to go back and put our guys in better situations to play and that’s on us as coaches. We got to put our guys in better situations to play and that’s on us as coaches. We got to put our guys in better situations to feel more comfortable and react as opposed to think in some situations and that’s the best way I can summarize it. In every game it’s been a little something different. … We just need to coach better.”

» On whether he is using bowl eligibility and motivation going forward: “Motivation is what you saw in the second half – those guys playing for each other. We got a close-knit football team. A team that’s got character. You wouldn’t have seen that in the second half if that wasn’t the case. Our guys, they’ll play, they’ll play hard.”

» On whether other long passing plays were called aside from the one on the first series: “Just off the top of my head, we had two incompletes on the sideline to Quinton [Dunbar]. We called a similar look with a double post two other times. We were in a seven-man protection and gave up a sack on one, on the other Tyler ended up scrambling on the play and got a positive play out of it. I would say another eight or 10 shots in the game. That’s just what we were looking for. We had others called in the game that maybe the progression didn’t take it that way based on the coverage.”

» On if the penalty problems will take care of themselves: “No, it something we coach every day and obviously we’re not doing a very good job. It’s something we emphasize, something we talk about. We talk about this is an emotional game, there’s going to be some things. We got to learn to walk away from those situations, and it’s something I’m going to address with the team again today.”

» Muschamp admitted that the Gators’ director of player personnel, Jon Haskins, resigned 10-14 days ago but did not provide a timetable for a new hire in the administrative role. OnlyGators.com learned Monday that Haskins was actually let go from his post and not for a performance-related reason.

» Muschamp said he would like to get freshman LB Jarrad Davis more work while also repping redshirt junior Darrin Kitchens more (he came back this week from a shoulder injury).

» On why Florida defers possession when winning the coin toss: “It’s game-to-game, number one, it’s not something we always try to do. … The other situation Saturday and the last ballgame, I believe, there’s a wind factor. We wanted the wind in the fourth quarter. Sometimes the wind comes through the stadium from the north side back to the south end zone and we wanted to make sure we had the wind in the fourth quarter Saturday. It’s a game-to-game thing.”

» On if the team can build from its solid performance in the second half: “The point is to win the game, and we didn’t do it.”

» Muschamp said the Gators’ kicking competition will remain open though he expects redshirt redshirt junior walk-on Frankie Velez and redshirt freshman Austin Hardin to continue splitting the field goal responsibilities with the latter attempting longer kicks.


  1. Michael Jones says:

    I don’t have a problem with deferring when we win the toss. I believe that’s the preferred handling of the situation with most football teams at every level. Good to be getting the ball coming out to start the 2nd half.

    On a bigger picture, Muschamp sounds humbled, and that’s not necessarily a bad thing. I’m not suggesting that the guy was too cocky, because I don’t think he was. I’ve said often and I’ll say it again: I like Will Muschamp as a person. The reason that him sounding humbled might be a good thing is that sometimes everybody has to hit rock bottom in order to finally get it through their head that a change in their approach, attitude, or philosophy is needed.

    Maybe now Coach can start to turn this thing around. Maybe the 2nd half of the Georgia game was already the beginning of turning it around; something to build on. I think every coach deserves at least 5 years, and he’s only in year 3. I, for one, am not ready to give up on the man.


  2. Champ supporter says:

    I agree with you. I believe he is the man for the job. Our players need to play better and execute. I can appreciate he is putting the blame on his shoulders, but that isn’t all him. We have some people who had some high expectations and quite frankly they are meeting those expectations! Morrison isn’t playing better than his freshman season, Purifoy and Roberson are supposed to be 1st round talents, but have they played like it? Matt Jones didn’t meet expectations. Robinson the WR was supposed to do big things, where is he? And where the heck are those top TE recruits from a year ago!

    I believe Muschamp is doing the best he can given the hand he’s been dealt. I know that isn’t the Gatot standard, but “it is what it is.”

    Go champ!

  3. Matthew says:

    Correct me if I’m wrong but didn’t Muschamp hire Pease and Davis?!?

  4. g8ter27 says:

    Ok, I will take the other side of this argument. I look at it like this: All of that talent that Champ Supporter listed has done very little to nothing. Why is that? Are they ALL that bad? Either these guys are not being coached up, we have a terrible talent evaluation process or the worst luck in college football with recruits. I tend to think it is the first. This “we don’t have the play makers” stuff is getting old. I think we do, we are just not using it.

    Think Champ is a rah rah guy who can fire a defense up at times, but either he needs to completely give control to a GOOD offensive coordinator or else he needs to go back to being a defensive coordinator himself.

  5. GatorGrad98 says:

    I agree with both of you… I think Gator nation would greatly regret it if we lost Muschamp! I love his intensity & passion, & I know the players do too. HOWEVER, you cannot convince me that Pease shouldn’t go, at least him if not others as well. Just my opinion though… I’m ready for some Gator Football again!!!

    • Ziggy says:

      Read the previous article and tell me where the offensive talent is at. I’ll save you the time. They are currently college freshmen (2013 class) and high school seniors in the 2014 class.

  6. Uf_84 says:

    I’m not sure the penalty problems are something the coaches can fix. That goes all the way back to when Pat Dye was at Auburn and called us out for being a dirty, cheap shot taking team in the week leading up to a game against us. If I remember right, there six personal foul penalties called on us that game, none on Auburn, Auburn won. It is a label that has stuck and a reputation that has preceeded us even to this very day among SEC officials. I’m pretty sure we have led the conference in personal foul penalities just about every year since. Other teams know and are coached to be in our face and bait us in to doing something stupid because they know there is zero tolerence where UF is concerned.
    This was completely obvious on the Solomon Patton penalty in the first quarter. There wasn’t a bigger thug in the Georgia game than Todd Gurley. He was starting crap the whole game when he was in there, but he only time he got called for anything was in the big fights where some of our players were also called. Our players have to know that they can’t get away with those things the way the conference’s favorite sons like Alabama, Georgia, Tennessee, and Auburn can. That’s just the way it is being a Gator. You have to walk away, you can not retaliate. It’s something that the mentality of most of today’s players can’t discipline themselves to do. It’s a testimony to the greatness of all our teams that were able to win championships in spite of this stigma.
    I could be be way off base with this conspiracy theroy stuff. Perhaps it’s all just a big coincidence. I’m just calling it the way I’ve seen it in forty years of following Gator football

    • Ziggy says:

      Your exactly right and I think this is what Muschamp was alluding to

    • Michael Jones says:

      I definitely noticed that the UGA player got in Patton’s face, deliberately (and successfully) trying to bait him. I still don’t understand why that wasn’t a taunting call. The kid came of out of nowhere and went out of his way to get in Patton’s face.

      Patton was definitely wrong to retaliate, but I thought that there should have been an off-setting taunting foul called.

      As for Gurley, how he was even able to stay in the game is beyond me. He was rabidly out of control, instigating a scuffle on almost every play and even taking a swing at one of our players right in front of the refs.

    • Ken (CA) says:

      Even if your conspiracy theory is correct, there is absolutely something that can be done about it. It is called instilling discipline. We have some of the biggest trash talkers in the league. make them stop. Soemone does something boneheaded, bench them. Effort penalties? OK, poor discipline penalties? absolutely fixable.

      • Michael Jones says:

        You, sir, are absolutely right. Whatever the cause, whatever the origin, whatever the history, it needs to come to a halt. Now.

  7. SW FL Joe says:

    I wonder how he explained to his sons about his unexcusable behavior towards a fan sat?

  8. WP says:

    Its on the coaches to coach the players up. Coach has the players now let’s Coach. I feel like all that time making the D great wasn’t making the O good caught up with the Gators. And as we all can see it’s takes both to win

    • Ziggy says:

      We haven’t had the same offensive coordinator from one year to the next since 2008. Think about that for a minute and how that impacted every recruiting class since. 2013 was the first class in 4 years in which we didn’t have to replace the O Coordinator. It was also the best offensive class talent wise as well. Coaching changes always negatively affect the current recruiting class no matter how much we tell ourselves that we’re Florida and we’ll win because of our name.

  9. TST says:

    i guess all the posters above enjoy poor football ..Thats what you have ! Boom has popped imo

    • g8ter27 says:

      This will change once we lose a few more his year. We did need to replace the O coordinator this year, we just didn’t do it. Look at the numbers, we are he worst or second to worst in the SEC in almost every single area.

  10. Spike says:

    84- I agree completely

  11. Michael Jones says:

    Firng Pease would be a big mistake. He would just be scapegoat. You can’t fire the guy for running what he’s being told to run by Muschamp. Come on guys, get serious. Do you for a second think that Muschamp has ever just turned Pease loose to call a game? No way.

    I’m still far from convinced that Pease isn’t a pretty talented guy. He’s just been kept on a very tight leash.

    Let the whole staff learn and sink or swim together. Once Muschamp adjusts his philosophy, then Pease will magically all of the sudden become a better offensive coordinator. Watch and see. This year has been just too freakish to evaluate this or any other staff on. Besides, it also isn’t fair because it’s only one season removed from an amazing 11-1 regular season record which vastly exceeded recommendations.

    Ziggy makes some great points about continuity and the importance of keeping the same staff and how not keeping the same staff not only hurts recruiting but also slows down the development of our current players by them having to get used to new verbiage, a new system, a new coach, a new playbook, etc., etc.

    Breathe, my fellow Gator brothers and sisters. . . . breathe!!

    • SWFL Joe says:

      If you keep under performing asst coaches just for consistency sake then you get consistent under performance. If you don’t think Pease is the problem you need to look at his record as Baylor OC. Same garbage only different colored uniforms. Having an offense that can’t break into the top 100 will do more to keep top flight offensive recruits away than any coaching change would.

      • TST says:

        hammer meet nail . well said Joe imo

      • Michael Jones says:

        Look, you and I agree that the offensive performance has been atrocious and needs to be fixed. What we disagree on is whose fault it is. I say it’s Muschamp’s philosophy that is the culprit and that Pease really hasn’t been given free reign to run his offense. If I’m wrong about that–if Pease has been given free reign and he is the one who is truly responsible for our ineptitude–then I agree that he has to go.

        I’m not suggesting that we keep a sorry assistant coach just for the sake of continuity. I recognize that’s a dead end street.

        • nugent1021 says:

          regardless, someone needs to hit the road. Bottom of the league (not just SEC) for 3 seasons. That’s coaching period. If Muschamp is smart he’ll dump Pease, If it’s Muschamp creating this problem then, if he’s smart, he dumps Pease and changes his tune with the new coordinator.

          Option 1: Dump Pease
          Option 2: Dump Pease, change tune

          Muschamp only says “that’s on me” when it’s the defense. He’s not coaching the offense or contributing to it in enough of a meaningful way that he thinks it’s his responsibility.

          The bright side is that tickets for the Georgia Southern game should be cheap and easy to get.

        • SWFL Joe says:

          I agree with you that the offense is Muschamp’s philosophy but Pease is the one who is suppose to implement it and that is where the disconnect comes. Think of it as Muschamp is the architect and Pease is the contractor whose job it to make the vision a reality. Muschamp has been a very successful DC at Auburn, LSU and Texas. He has seen thousands of hours of offensive game film He know exactly what type of offense gives DC’s heartburn. He has drawn up the blueprints. Those blueprint are the framework of the offense. Within that framework, Pease should be given free rein knowing what kind of tools he has to work with to get the job done. I just think Pease is trying to use the wrong tools for the wrong job. To fix our 111th ranked offense we either need different tools (ie players and/or plays) or a new contractor (OC).

  12. Matthew says:

    I’m starting to think Charile Weis left because Champ wouldn’t let him do what he wanted on O.

  13. aziatic41 says:

    Muschamp is too stubborn to change his philopshy. He will not change anything offensively or defensively and that is why he must go.

  14. Ken (CA) says:

    What exactly is the role of director of player personnel? Does that have any on the field impact?

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