Snell’s Slant: A new low under Muschamp

By Adam Silverstein
November 14, 2013

A three-year starter for the Florida Gators who played under Steve Spurrier and Ron Zook, former guard Shannon Snell joined in 2012 as a football columnist to provide his unique perspective on the team. He has returned to continue sharing his musings through the 2013 season. Snell, who played in 46 games over four seasons and started 36 of those contests, was named a First Team All-American by Sporting News in 2003 and spent two seasons in the NFL.

[Editor’s Note: Snell submitted his column on Monday, therefore it was written before Florida released official statements from athletic director Jeremy Foley and president Bernie Machen on Wednesday. Publication was delayed due to scheduling conflicts.]

With so many lofty expectations for a team that posted an 11-2 record the previous season and was supposed to be significantly improved on offense with some consistency at coordinator for the first time in years, Florida has completely and utterly failed.

Injuries, uninspired play and undisciplined behavior have plagued this team all season, and it has finally caught up with Will Muschamp in a major way against Vanderbilt.

As much as I’d hate to say it, I just don’t believe in Muschamp or how he’s running this team anymore. Sitting back and seeing what the Gators are producing week in and week out is simply depressing. It’s disgusting and discouraging to watch. Judging from the attendance at the stadium and some of your comments on this very website, a good portion of Gator Nation agrees with me.

Before anyone jumps into the comment section here and points it out, I am well aware that the massive amount of injuries is a big reason why Florida is struggling so mightily this year. The Gators seem to have been snake bitten this season but that’s no excuse – Muschamp has admitted as much.

It’s his job to make sure the next guy is always ready and available to take over in case things like this happen, even if it is some of the younger four-star talents that could play on a number of other teams across the country. “Man down, man up,” right?

Now on the heels of an embarrassing loss to a team that – like Tennessee and Kentucky – has been Florida’s doormat in recent memory, the Gators are on the brink of their first losing season since 1979.

Florida is a two-touchdown underdog this week to South Carolina, will probably be a four-touchdown underdog to Florida State (and could very well get blown out at home in that game while watching their rivals advance to the national title game).

This team has been reduced to something many of us that have followed the program for decades simply have not seen before. What happened in 2013 is worse than anything that was put on the field under Ron Zook.


  1. cline says:

    Go Gators, in all kinds of weather!

  2. ga8or22 says:

    The Gators have had hard times before and overcame them – we will do it again.

  3. TST says:

    oh , i agree 100% with Mr.Shell . Question for Mr.Shell . Why is our line play so bad ? Not coached up or poor athletes (na) or both ? They always seem lost during the play ..

    • gatorboi352 says:

      IT’s the coaching. Every problem on this team is due to the coaching staff. Hell, you could even argue the unusual high number of injuries is partially on the coaches as well, how they are training and conditioning them.

      • TST says:

        Yea , i’ll buy that . Just look at Auburn this year . Hate to say this .But, they are playing great ball under their new coach and staff.
        I feel Boom wants to hold UF for ransom with his 8 Million BO . Color me stupid but since then he hasn’t done squat ! Stupid , stupid move by JF imo ..

  4. gatorboi352 says:

    Editor’s Note: Snell submitted his column on Monday, therefore it was written before Florida released official statements from athletic director Jeremy Foley and president Bernie Machen on Wednesday.

    Look, we all know why those statements were made. Will is on his way out at the end of the year barring a sweep of SC and FSU.

  5. Jeff says:

    Great points. I hear the injury excuse a lot, but then you have to give the 3 teams we have lost to the same excuse as they were so very banged up: Mizzou, UGA and Vandy. And two of these teams beat us with backup freshman! Ridiculous. Even with our injuries, we still have more talent than Mizzou and Vandy on the roster.

    It’s more than the injuries, it’s the roster management, burning redshirts, no drive from our players, etc. perhaps worse is the fact that our players quit buying into Muschamp’s style and it was evident vs Vandy that they simply quit playing. That falls on coaching, folks, and that’s not something Muschamp can just fix. He also has an attitude towards refs, media and our own fans by challenging them to a fight.

    We need to replace this staff immediately after the season concludes in my honest opinion, and I’ve been a Muschamp supporter. One guy I am really impressed with and does more with less is James Franklin. Hoping Foley and Machen are making some calls of next year will be a compete disaster, worse than this season…

    • jbk0250 says:

      I totally agree with you Jeff. We need a coaching change immediately. Muschamp’s behavior on the sidelines has been embarrassing, and his head coaching talents have proven to be very much lacking. In his next job, he’ll make someone a very good defensive coordinator, but as for a head coaching gig, let someone who can coach, coach! I wish we could coax Jon Gruden to take the reins, but chances of that are slim.

  6. SWFL Joe says:

    Anybody that thinks we have a chance against FSU only needs to ask themselves one question. Will Muchamp do whatever it takes to knock he bestest buddy Jimbo out of the BCS title game and thereby allowing Meyer, (the quy who left him a broken program) to sneak in? I think we all know the answer to that

    • Hans says:

      and if Florida does beat FSU it would be nice to watch Ohio State get buried by Bama like Notre Dame did, but what sucks is Bamas schedule let them walk into Miami last year…

  7. Pookie Watson says:

    A new low under Muschamp.
    Unfortunately this is the bottom yet.
    What if we finish 4-8? I’m not saying it will happen, but.

  8. Hans says:

    If we could just have Muschamp demote to Defensive coordinator and bring in Bobby Petrino we would have it all. If Foley gives Muschamp one more year then Pease HAS to go

    • Ken (CA) says:

      I don’t see why everyone is all over Petrino. He has proven over the last few years to be a person of very low character, no matter how good of a coach he is. I can’t see UF ever even considering him

  9. G2 says:

    I get the feeling they might pull a Zooker/Kiffen if they had anywhere to go or a hot coach on the radar. The players have quit playing with maximum effort, you can see it…. that’s why a change needs to happen this year. Taking the hit when things are this bad makes to most sense but who do you get?

    My prediction even if we loose out is a house cleaning next year.

  10. Ken (CA) says:

    Shannon – what’s your take on the many Champ supporters here that say, aside from the injuries, all the NFL defections? It seems to me that when you have top 5-10 recruiting class every year, you should have NFL caliber talent replacing NFL defections and that should be no excuse at all. It never affected Spurrier, and not quite sure with Meyer’s last year exactly what all was going on, but the talent was definitely there or we wouldn’t have had all those leave for NFL. We even supposedly have no playmakers on offense for past 3 years, yet we have receivers like Deonte Thompson doing well on Sunday.

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