Muschamp assures improvement

Florida coach Will Muschamp said in the coming days he will also evaluate himself and take a look at every aspect of his program.

Elizabeth Hamilton / Correspondent
Published: Sunday, December 1, 2013 at 5:54 p.m.
Last Modified: Sunday, December 1, 2013 at 5:54 p.m.

While his players now turn their focus to the classroom and getting ready for finals Sunday, Florida coach Will Muschamp got into the business of making changes that will impact the Gators' 2014 season.

First, he fired offensive coordinator Brent Pease and offensive line coach Tim Davis. A source told The Sun on Sunday that no more coaching staff changes are expected. Muschamp is now looking for his third offensive coordinator in four years and another line coach.

Muschamp said in the coming days he will also evaluate himself and take a look at every aspect of his program.

“We need to take a look at ourselves schematically with what we're doing,” Muschamp said Saturday after the 37-7 loss to Florida State. “There have been some things that have happened that are very difficult to overcome, but schematically, there's no question we need to take a look at ourselves.”

Despite the dismal 4-8 season, the Gators' first losing record in 34 years, Muschamp said he feels good about the direction of the team.

“We're a much better football team right now than we were my first year, regardless of what the record is, and where we're headed,” he said. “I know we all focus on the results, but I know where this thing is and where it's headed.

“We just have to roll our sleeves up and go to work. That's the bottom line. That's all you can do. Be a great leader, great motivator for your team and organization. That's all we're going to do. We're going to be fine. We're going to have a good football team next year.”

Senior wide receiver/wildcat quarterback Trey Burton said the Gators, who were decimated by injuries this season, will bounce back in 2014.

“They're going to get back to work. I have no doubt in them they're going to be really, really good next year,” Burton said. “We're losing some talent, but we have a lot of guys who have gotten a lot of snaps. A guy, for example, Kelvin Taylor he played unbelievable against South Carolina. Whenever he's been in, he played really well. Just guys like that getting experience. Maybe he wouldn't have played as much if Matt Jones was healthy.”

On his Sunday television show, Muschamp thanked Florida fans for the support they showed the Gators in the sold out Swamp on Saturday and vowed that better days are ahead.

“We didn't have a great year,” Muschamp said. “For them to come out and support our football team, our program, said a lot. It certainly impressed a lot of recruits that were in the stands. We've got to give (the fans) more to cheer about, and that's on us as coaches and players.

“We didn't get the results we wanted (this season). We certainly will next year, I can assure you of that. Very frustrating under the circumstances that occurred. But that's real.

“That was part of battling through that. Got to continue to battle through that. I'm very proud of how our guys represented our university.”

NOTES: Muschamp, who met with the entire team Sunday, said he will be meeting with some of UF's top juniors in the coming days to discuss the possibility of them entering the NFL draft. Junior cornerbacks Loucheiz Purifoy and Marcus Roberson are considered possible first-round picks and are expected to put their names in the draft. ESPN reported Saturday that Purifoy said he will leave UF. … Wide receiver Chris Thompson (Gainesville High School) made his first start, the fourth true freshman to start this season (Vernon Hargreaves III, Kelvin Taylor and Jarrad Davis).

Contact Robbie Andreu at 352-374-5022 or Also check out Andreu's blog at

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