Muschamp staff coming together?

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TAMPA – Will Muschamp, who takes over for Urban Meyer after Saturday’s game, has quietly been working on putting together his first Florida coaching staff. There are Internet reports and lots of speculation that Muschamp has pretty much lined up his new staff, including his offensive and defensive coordinators, and will have an announcement shortly after Saturday’s Outback Bowl, maybe as soon as Sunday.

But if he’s reached an agreement with anyone, he’s keeping it private. Very private. He’s not telling anyone what’s going on, including the Florida players.

When senior center Mike Pouncey said during Wednesday’s interview that Muschamp was hiring a great offensive coordinator, the media pounced, thinking Pouncey knew who the new leader of the Florida offense was going to be. He doesn’t, he said.

“Believe me, if I knew, I’d tell you,” Pouncey said. “I haven’t heard any names. I’m just saying that this is Florida and he’s going to hire a great offensive coordinator. But I don’t know who it is. Nobody does.”

At his introductory news conference, Muschamp said he was going to hire an offensive coordinator with experience at both the college and NFL levels, which opens the door to a lot of potential candidates. Muschamp’s new offensive and defensive coordinators likely are coaching in the NFL at the moment.

There were reports Wednesday that Muschamp’s linebackers coach is going to be Texas Tech defensive coordinator James Willis. That might turn out to be the case, but I would not believe anything until it comes from the only source that matters – Will Muschamp.

Pouncey did reveal some potential news during interviews. He said junior cornerback Janoris Jenkins is “definitely” leaving for the NFL. Pouncey also said he thinks junior free safety Will Hill will enter the NFL Draft. Both have been rumored to leaving for quite some time now, so Pouncey’s revelation does not come as a surprise.

27 COMMENTS

  1. Got to agree about Hill. The kid is not ready for the NFL. Goes to show where his head was all season when he was repeatedly blowing coverages every game… looking at his NFL stock and not playing for his team. The same with Jenoris Jenkins who i am disappointed with too. He got surgery for that shoulder problem when he could have still played through it in the Outback Bowl, but he’s too worried about his NFL stock. Some say that’s a harsh thing to say, but I still find it disappointing none-the-less. Perhaps getting some of the prima donnas off the team every 2 – 3 years i a great way to settle it down and get the younger players focused.

  2. I can’t say I completely agree with Todd. Jenkins came ready to play, he was a starter since day one. Hill on the other hand was a bit of a disappointment early on. He had 5 star knucklehead syndrome his first year and while he has shown bits and pieces of greatness the last to seasons, he has never lived up to his potential. But, I guess when it comes to the NFL athleticism out ranks the brain.

  3. Who cares what Mike Pouncey says. Maybe he should worry about his on field play and not be gossip central. We had the same problem with guys leaving early before and we come back better. A fresh start is a good thing for the Gators.

  4. I think they both could benefit from another year at the college level. It’s even better that Muschamp wants to run a pro style offense and defense. They could use the experience, and wait and see what happens with all the talk about a possible lockout.

  5. Doesn’t bother me at all if ANY JR’s declare THIS year, especially a diva like Hill. If you look at the personnel situation next season, and consider that we will have all new coaches and a new system for O and D, I look at next year as a building year. 2011 would be rough no matter who coaches that season, esp. with new coaches, but 2012 could be special if lots of young players play next year.

  6. Janoris, when healthy, played fantastic this season and other than Ahmad Black was the only bright spot on an otherwise lackluster defense. He shut down AJ Green who will the first WR taken in the NFL draft in April. If he comes back (he won’t), it would be great considering we will be losing Black as well.

    Will Hill, meh. He can take his “talents” to the league for all I’m concerned!

  7. Oh boy…not another tough year. The fickle fans can’t take it. Is “Fire Will Muschamp . com” up and running yet. They might as well get it started. Sad but true.

    Anyway, I hope “we” the fans give this guy a guy a chance to do his job.

  8. Though it may be a tough year. I don’t think it will be as tough as some may think. True we will have a tough schedule but alot of those teams we play either will lose key players to the draft or graduation and we play two or three at home. It will be key to see how well this team jells during the spring. If they can learn the new schemes and have a great summer then I think we may be able to squeeze nine maybe ten regular season wins.

  9. I am very excited to see our defense next year, even without Jenkins. Will Hill was pretty worthless all year anyways and I’m not sure why somebody would draft him after watching this past season. The defense will have to carry us, but I think they should be a very solid unit.
    No idea at all what to expect from the offense. That group of guys that played this season has zero confidence. Hopefully somebody else is allowed to do the play calling in the Outback Bowl and gain a little momentum going into the Spring.
    That being said…Thanks Urban Meyer for six great years!

  10. While I agree with discussion concerning the tough schedule next year, there is an awful lot of talent on both sides of the ball coming back. A fresh start was really needed with respect to getting rid of the current staff and some upperclassmen who did not produce. The secondary by the end of the season was a confused mess and neither JJ nor Hill seemed make that unit less vulnerable. Let’s hope the incoming staff moves some players to their best postions and puts them into systems where they can be successful. It has been demonstrated at UF and other programs that you don’t have to wait until next year if the talent is there.

  11. I’m sure Hill will have great combine numbers, and the measurables-obsessed NFL scouts will forget his lack of productivity this year. Janoris did what is right for him. He’s ready to go and he needs to get himself healthy before the combines.

  12. To me, this feels a lot like the zook-meyer transition period. New passionate coaches with great pedigrees, great recruiting, and a lot of talent left over from the new regime. To underclassmen or juniors that want to go, I wish you good luck. No hard feelings, no ill will. Shedding those guys just leaves a lot of opportunity for the players behind them in the depth chart. The more experience they get, the better we look down the road. Think about how many unsung heroes there were on the 2006 team…that got a big fat ring as a graduation present or parting gift.

    Personally, I’ll take a young team with something to prove and a FIERY coach that was hailed as a “risky hire” any day of the week over an established team that needs to trim the fat. I was a student under Zook and Meyer. The difference in the student body was night and day. Those first two years under Meyer were pure electric. Watching Meyer build up his mini dynasty was something I’ll never forget, but boys, I think the future looks really bright long term. I can’t wait.

  13. Agreed, I don’t think Will Hill is ready but his backup this past year Josh Evans looked pretty darned good in those first two games be fore Hill came back from suspencion. So if Hill wants to leave …So be it we don’t want any pre-madonnas on our squad. But JJ is ready he produced big this year and limited the top two recievers in the draft this year to minimal performances. check Juleo Jone’s stats and AJ Green’s Janoris basically shut both of them down. As far as expectations next year…it all depends on the staff and how quickly the kids can pick the new systems. As for talent, that’s not an issue not even at quarterback. I predict by the fourth game if Brantley is here and not producing we will see this highly touted freshman qb inserted. I think Brantley will have a short leash if he stay’s. Muschamp did say in his press confrence that we are not on a five year plan. That means he wants to win now.

  14. Remember, the NFL puts almost as much weight on potential as on past performance. While Hill’s collegiate career has been a big disappointment, he’s a big, fast and physical athlete who should do well in the NFL combines. So it’s not a surprise if he goes.

  15. I agree with ALC, I don’t think next yr is going to be as bad as we think. Unless some are thinking national title. Look at it like this, this season we had a new DC, an OC who had no clue how to scheme or how to effectively use players, and a HC who already had one foot in the ESPN studio’s. This coming season we will have a proven DC who is also our HC who brings ith him the same enthusiasm and fire Meyer had in the early yrs, we’ll have , hopefully, an OC who knows what he’s doing and can use all the talent we will field. We play some tough games, but this coaching staff looks to be heads and tails more prepared and skilled to deal with it than our current one. As far as Will Hill goes, don’t let the door hit you in the ass on the way out. The kid was invisible all yr, and somehow people were on his jock because of a good Georgia game. Hopefully DT, Halapio, (I know he can’t but I can wish can’t I?), and Moses Jenkins follows him.

  16. Jenkins had a very good year and is ready for the NFL. Giving him grief for getting surgery and missing the bowl game is ridiculous. He played 9 games with the injury according to Meyer – that is enough for me. He had a great year – even though he had to cover receivers for like 7 minutes at a pop due to no pass rush. The guy was every where on the field in some games – pretty much he and Black were the only two out there at times who seemed to make big plays.

  17. I’m not impressed with Muschamp yet. He is way too zany to be a head coach. He needs to calm down. Jumping around and acting like a toddler is okay when you are an assistant coach, but you need nerves of steel to be the man in charge. Jimbo Fisher is basically Admiral Bull Halsey. Let’s see if Muschump can be Admiral Chester Nimitz.

  18. Lots of opinions and few facts.

    Muschamp and all he brings is fresh and new. None of us has a clue what anything will look like until he Orange/Blue game.

    Meanwhile, players come and go. i’d prefer to see freshman that will stay and grow into the system as Muschamp installs it rather than holdovers that have to relearn. they are going to have to do that in the NFL anyway – better now and not later.

    The best thing for Gator Nation is to relax. Cool your jets. Foley is among the best and the business end of the Gators is incredibly strong. If it takes a year or two and we can plot the progress – awesome.

    What we don’t want is a UGA mess with a pretty boy coach that year-after-year doesn’t deliver. But with Foley – that will never happen. Just ask Ron Zook.

    Give it time. Nobody knows a thing here and good for Muschamp to take his own time and work to his own schedule.

  19. How about Greg Knapp? He has OC experience in both NCAA FCS and NFL and is currently QB coach at Houston Texans. Not only does he have some creds but the job of OC at Florida ought to be a step up from where he is now. Sure there are current OC’s in the NCAA and NFL who would be better but guys decent gigs like the Norm Chow’s,Gus Malzahn’s, Brian Schottenheimer’s, and Tom Moore’s might not be interested the job.