Muschamp takes shot at Ohio State
Published: Tuesday, July 16, 2013 at 5:59 p.m.
Last Modified: Tuesday, July 16, 2013 at 10:12 p.m.
HOOVER, Ala. — Will Muschamp wasn't exactly Coach Boom on Tuesday at SEC Media Days, but the Florida football coach did toss a few subtle shots at the man who used to stand at the podium for the Gators at this event.
The most obvious shot at Urban Meyer was lobbed by Muschamp when he was asked about the reports two weeks ago that Meyer recently turned in UF to the NCAA for a minor recruiting violation that turned out to be unfounded.
“It's really a dead issue," Muschamp said. "In both situations we were turned in by Ohio (State), the University of Florida didn't do anything wrong.
"We appreciate our friends from Ohio making sure we are compliant with NCAA rules. They certainly know a little bit about NCAA rules.”
Muschamp was referencing a 2010 scandal that cost former Ohio State coach Jim Tressel his job. Ohio State was banned from postseason play last fall, Meyer's first at the school.
Asked if it was strange that Meyer used to coach at Florida and then turned in the Gators, Muschamp replied: "Big Ten Media Days are next week. Ask him."
In response to the report that he turned in his former school accusing running backs coach Brian White with making illegal contract with a recruit, Meyer denied it to The Sun. Another Ohio State official said the potential violation was reported to the NCAA by the school's compliance director.
Muschamp made his comments to about a dozen reporters a few minutes before he appeared at the podium in the main media room.
Muschamp did not mention Meyer by name again during his press conference. But he did have a strong opinion about player behavior and the responsibility of coaches.
Meyer, of course, has been heavily criticized over the past few weeks in the wake of one of his former UF players, tight end Aaron Hernandez, getting arrested on a murder charge in Massachusetts.
During Meyer's six seasons at Florida, 31 UF players were arrested.
Meyer sent a text to The Sun last week stating that it was “irresponsible” to blame him or UF for what Hernandez did three years after he left the Florida program for the NFL.
Muschamp was asked Tuesday how much a coach is responsible for off-the-field behavior of his players.
“You're 100-percent responsible,” Muschamp said. “When you sign a student-athlete to come to the University of Florida, I look at his parents, guardians, whoever is important to him in his life, tell them it's my job to be an extension of what's already happened at home.
“I can't possibly know everything that happens every single night with our football team. You also can't stick your head in the sand and pretend everything is OK, either. You need to be very aware of the kind of guys your guys are hanging out with.
“But you're 100-percent responsible for every student-athlete on your football team.”
Contact Robbie Andreu at 352-374-5022 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Also check out Andreu's blog at Gatorsports.com.