They could have anyone they wanted and they go with a guy that has never been a head coach? Muschamp is a questionable hire this quick. Folley may have helped the other east teams out a little. I like this hire I'd it's a little later. It will be interesting to see how this plays out.
There had been rumors of a “mystery candidate” on Jeremy Foley’s list. But Bob Stoops, Bobby Petrino, Chris Peterson, Dan Mullen, Charlie Strong and even Jon Gruden were the names folks kept hearing.
No one was projecting Florida would hire a coach with no head coaching experience — and a Georga man at that.
Texas defensive coordinator and — former — coach-in-waiting Will Muschamp has accepted Florida’s offer to become the Gators’ next head coach. And it didn’t take two-and-a-half weeks to land him, either.
“Coach Muschamp is someone we targeted from the beginning and he is the guy we wanted. He is the only person we met with and the only person we offered the job to.”
If that’s the case, all those Bob Stoops stories really were pure nonsense just as Stoops had said.
Muschamp said in a UF release: “This is a dream come true to be the head coach of the Florida Gators. I grew up watching the Gators and whatever other SEC team was on television. I have great memories watching SEC football with my father on Saturdays and playing football in the backyard with my two brothers right here in Gainesville.”
It’s an amazing hire. Here are a few immediate reactions:
* Muschamp is a hot, hot name in the coaching business. In the last round of coaching changes, Muschamp was Tennessee’s first choice to replace Lane Kiffin but he turned the Volunteers down. (Think Gator fans don’t love that?)
* Muschamp’s move also signals that either a) Mack Brown figures to be at Texas a lot longer or b) Muschamp believes Florida is a superior job to Texas. (Think Gator fans don’t love that?)
* There are probably a lot of Georgia fans who are upset tonight. As a Georgia grad, Muschamp was viewed as a “someday” coach of the Bulldogs. You can bet the folks who wanted to blow out Richt and hire Muschamp this offseason are bummed. (Think Gator fans don’t love that, too?)
* On the flipside, there is a high “Zook factor” with Muschamp. Sure he’s well thought of and well respected. But he’s never been a college head coach. Everyone’s gotta start somewhere and Foley’s rolled the dice that this inexperienced head coach will perform better than the last first-timer he hired — Ron Zook.
* Interesting timing by Florida, by the way. As millions sat down to watch former Gator Cam Newton win the Heisman Trophy, Foley and crew put out a press release naming Muschamp as their coach. They didn’t do it at 7pm. They didn’t wait and do it at 9pm. They did it right as the Heisman presentation was getting under way. Now maybe that was a coincidence… but I wouldn’t bet on it.
* With Bobby Petrino and Dan Mullen staying put, it looks as though Gus Malzahn’s choices just became a lot more limited. But wait… what if Muschamp and Florida come after Malzahn as offensive coordinator?
The dominoes aren’t done falling yet.
A stunning hire by the Gators.