Friday, June 22, 2018
Sports

For Muschamp, it's second (chance) and goal (to prove himself in SEC)

Will Muschamp didn't take long to get to his finest quality as a football coach on Monday. He told the good people of South Carolina to take a look at his wife, Carol.

"Gamecock Nation, if you don't think I can recruit, look at her and look at me," Muschamp said. "I can sell ice to an Eskimo."

When reached for comment, members of Eskimo Nation said they would indeed buy ice from Muschamp. But they would not hire him to coach their football team.

South Carolina had no such cold feet. "Coach Boom" has been chosen to replace Steve Spurrier. You wish you could hear the NSA tapes of the conversation that power brokers had while going over the stack of résumés.

"Hey, why don't we hire the one guy who has proven he isn't qualified to be a head coach!"

That's one skeptical explanation. Another is that the Gamecocks have such an acute case of Gator Envy they would have offered the job to Galen Hall if Muschamp had turned them down.

"There's only one coach Spurrier," the new guy said. "I need to be Will Muschamp."

That's what Florida and 12 other SEC schools hope.

South Carolina is banking on F. Scott Fitzgerald being wrong about there being no second acts in American life. While talents from Richard Nixon to Britney Spears have risen from career ashes, most of them at least showed they had the goods the first time around.

In Muschamp's only time around as a head coach, he showed he was a fine assistant coach. There's no doubt Boom can recruit and design a defense. But at Florida he had Trump-like resources and kept filing for offensive bankruptcy.

That's why Muschamp was probably South Carolina's fourth or fifth choice. But as Georgia scooped up Kirby Smart and Houston locked up Tom Herman, it became clear the Gamecocks would have to invoke the Patron Saint of Second Chances.

Bill Belichick was a bust in his first head-coaching job in the NFL. Of course, it was in Cleveland, so he gets some slack there. But a 36-44 record from 1991-95 gave no indication that the next Lombardi was lurking under the hoodie.

Belichick refined his approach, drafted Tom Brady and the rest is Super Bowl history. If Muschamp had recruited Brady, he would have turned him into Jeff Driskel.

And for every Belichick who made the most of his mulligan, there are far more flops like Charlie Weis. That's why there are far fewer coaching re-treads in college.

A FoxSports.com survey showed 51 FBS job openings in 2013 and 2014. Only six went to coaches who'd been fired or resigned from previous jobs.

The pecking order is usually: 1) coaches who've been successful; and 2) assistants with promise and pizzazz. The best a Muschamp can usually hope for is a gig at a struggling mid-major. Now he can show he's learned from his mistakes and is ready for an SEC job again.

I don't know what Muschamp learned in one season as Auburn's defensive coordinator. Based on his sideline tirade during the Alabama game, when he had to be restrained from going WWE on the officials, he still tends to go "boom."

The new ball coach addressed that concern Monday.

"I think absolutely there's a huge difference in being a head coach and a defensive coordinator," Muschamp said

He also hopes there's a huge difference in Kurt Roper, who was his last offensive coordinator at UF. He's getting the band back together at South Carolina.

Fans there can only hope Weis isn't named offensive quality-control coach.

I hope it works out. Almost everyone (except referees) who's been around Muschamp loves him. He didn't win like Urban Meyer at UF, but he ran a far more respectable program.

The Gamecocks can expect that. They can expect intensity, great defense and a guy who really could sell ice to Eskimos.

Beyond that, all Gamecock fans can do now is hope they haven't been sold a bill of coaching goods.

— Orlando Sentinel (TNS)

Comments
Florida eliminates Texas Tech at College World Series, faces Arkansas for title-round spot

Florida eliminates Texas Tech at College World Series, faces Arkansas for title-round spot

OMAHA, Neb. — JJ Schwarz hit a two-run homer and Florida built enough cushion to survive Texas Tech's six-run outburst over the seventh and eighth innings to eliminate the Red Raiders from the College World Series with a 9-6 win Thursday night....
Updated: 3 hours ago
Missed time a good mental reset for Raysí Matt Duffy

Missed time a good mental reset for Raysí Matt Duffy

ST. PETERSBURG — Missing all of 2017 might have been the absolute worst thing for Matt Duffy.Frustratingly idled as he eventually recovered and rehabbed from ongoing left heel issues, he couldn't play the game he loved, couldn't show the Rays o...
Updated: 3 hours ago

Sports on TV/radio for Friday, June 22

TODAYBaseballYankees at Rays7 p.m.Fox Sun; 620-AMDodgers at Mets7 p.m.MLBMarlins at Rockies8:30 p.m.FSFCFLWinnipeg at Montreal7 p.m.ESPN2College baseball, World SeriesMississippi State vs. Oregon State3 p.m.ESPNArkansas vs. Florida8 p.m.ESPNHorsesRoy...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Timeline of investigations, suspensions and allegations involving Jameis Winston

Timeline of investigations, suspensions and allegations involving Jameis Winston

The NFL will suspend Bucs quarterback Jameis Winston three games without pay to start the regular season for violating the league's personal conduct policy. The suspension could be increased if he fails to meet certain undisclosed requirements expect...
Updated: 4 hours ago
Jameis Winston suspension means Bucs will turn to Ryan Fitzpatrick at QB

Jameis Winston suspension means Bucs will turn to Ryan Fitzpatrick at QB

TAMPA — The news of Jameis Winston's suspension to start this season likely means the Bucs will have veteran Ryan Fitzpatrick stepping in at quarterback for the first three games of the regular season.Fitzpatrick took over as the starter for th...
Updated: 4 hours ago
Kevin Knox to Knicks makes NBA history locally

Kevin Knox to Knicks makes NBA history locally

More than a year ago, Kevin Knox stepped across the stage at the Straz Center to receive his high school diploma.On Thursday, the former Tampa Catholic star was on basketball's biggest stage as he fulfilled his lifelong goal of making the NBA.Knox wa...
Updated: 4 hours ago
2018-19 schedule unveiled: Lightning opens with five straight at home

2018-19 schedule unveiled: Lightning opens with five straight at home

NHL schedules all balance out at the end, but the Lightning will open 2018-19 with five straight home games and end the season with its last four on the road.The Lightning released its schedule Thursday evening for the upcoming season, with all sorts...
Updated: 4 hours ago
Without a first-rounder, Lightning still could have busy draft weekend

Without a first-rounder, Lightning still could have busy draft weekend

The Lightning doesn't have a first-round pick in this weekend's draft, but that's not to say the weekend couldn't be busy for general manager Steve Yzerman and his front office.The Lightning sent its top draft pick to the Rangers in February as part ...
Updated: 4 hours ago
Next move is simple for the Bucs: Get rid of Jameis Winston

Next move is simple for the Bucs: Get rid of Jameis Winston

Trade him. Waive him. Cut him.Whatever.Just get rid of him.Jameis Winston should never play another game for the Tampa Bay Bucs.Plain and simple, he's a bad guy and the Bucs should have nothing more to do with him.He already will miss the first three...
Updated: 4 hours ago
Rays journal: Jake Bauers proves heís up to speed on bases

Rays journal: Jake Bauers proves heís up to speed on bases

ST. PETERSBURG – Rookie 1B Jake Bauers has impressed at the plate and in the field since his June 7 promotion.Also, with his hustling on the bases."I knew he played hard; everybody said that at every level,'' manager Kevin Cash said. "I di...
Updated: 7 hours ago