In a weekend that featured a handful of compelling victories in college football, the Florida Gators at least had an argument for the most impressive victory. Will Muschamp’s team was hanging around the top 10 in the rankings when it hosted LSU and came away with a 14-6 victory that propelled the Gators to top-five status.
That said, Muschamp isn’t ready to proclaim his team as one of the top five in the country quite yet, and while a pivotal matchup with South Carolina looms in two weeks, he’s not overlooking Saturday’s game at Vanderbilt.
Will Muschamp joined The Dan Patrick Show to discuss Saturday’s victory over LSU, how the past success looms over him at Florida, his quarterback situation, how the SEC is different now than when he played at Georgia and if his team is the fourth-best in the country.
How long do you and your team get to enjoy a victory like the one you had over LSU on Saturday?:
“We have 24-hour rule around here. You either enjoy the win or suffer with the loss and you’ve got to move forward very quickly in our league because you always have a quality opponent coming up next.”
What’s the difference in film study when it comes after a victory compared to after a loss?:
“I try to approach it the same. I’m real technical about what we did well and what we didn’t do well. I don’t really want the players to feel any differently about me as far as my mood based on winning and losing. Really, more than anything, to me, it’s about how we approach and play the game. In our league, you’re going to play some really good teams and you can play really well and maybe not have the success and the results you want, but you can play really poorly sometimes and come out and win. I want to be very technical about what happened in the game — what we did well, what we didn’t do well.”
When you go to big-time college programs, it’s always about what happened before you got there. How much of that hangs over you given the history at Florida?:
“When I walked into my office, there was only three things left in a very barren office, and that was three national championship trophies. I think our athletic director left them here on purpose to make sure I understood the expectation level.”
Did you joke with your athletic director about that?:
“I did. I walked in and his office is right down from mine. I said, ‘Jeremy, I’m assuming these were left here on purpose.’ He said, ‘That’s what we expect.’ I said, ‘Yeah, I got ya.’”
There was a lot of talk to start the season surrounding your quarterback situation and a two-quarterback system. Why has that waned?:
“I think Jeff Driskel’s played really well. Given the opportunities and what he’s been able to do — first of all going on the road to College Station and Knoxville, Tenn. — and playing well and our football team winning and continuing to do so until this point. We have two really good players in Jacoby Brissett and Jeff Driskel and we worked through camp and worked into our first game. … I felt like you need to have a starting quarterback and you need to decide on that, because regardless of what you think of your quarterback, that is the leader of your team. That is definitely the leader of your offense. … We had to make a very difficult decision and I think Jeff’s played pretty well.”
What’s the difference in the SEC now compared to when you played at Georgia?:
“Well they’ve got a lot better players than they did when I was playing. I think more, just top to bottom, there’s a lot of parity in all of college football, but certainly in the Southeastern Conference because everybody’s on TV now and more kids are staying closer to home to play. You’re not being able to go into some places you used to, some of the elite schools, and sign whoever you wanted to. I think that a lot more schools have a lot better talent across the board.”
Do you feel like you have the fourth-best team in the country?:
“Oh, I don’t worry about that right now. We’ve got a long schedule. … I think we’re improved. I always have been, ‘Relative to what?’ What we’ve faced so far, we’re where we want to be and we’re looking forward to another opportunity. … I’m very simple-minded and I don’t look a whole lot past that.”
Listen to Will Muschamp on The Dan Patrick Show here (Interview begins at 23:15)