Muschamp: If one game determines a decision, you probably don't want them

Posted by: Chris Vannini on Tuesday November 22, 2016

Will Muschamp has South Carolina bowl-eligible in year one and has the No. 16-ranked recruiting class, so this upcoming game against Clemson means a lot for the program's growth, but he hopes the result doesn’t change recruiting one way or the other.

It’s the battle for the state of South Carolina, so an upset of a Playoff team would boost perception, but he doesn’t want one game to change a recruit's mind. If it does, it's questionable.

“I don’t think one game ever does anything, as far as the recruiting process is concerned,” Muschamp said Tuesday. “It’s about seasons, it’s about opportunity, it’s about comfort, feel, all of those things.

I’ve never felt like one game ever determined anyone’s decision-making on signing day. I’ve never felt that way. The ones that do, you probably don’t want them, at the end of the day. So I’ve never felt that way.”

A year ago, Clemson entered the game ranked No. 1, while South Carolina had little to play for under an interim head coach and a losing season, but the Tigers had to fight to pull out a 37-32 win. You never know what’ll happen in this rivalry.

But Muschamp doesn’t want the motivation just to upset Clemson’s season.

I don’t know that I ever want them worried about a goal or an external event, a ring or whatever. I want our guys worried about playing well,” he said. “Because what ends up happening is you get so focused on the things that don’t have anything to do with you playing well in the game. We don’t need to be motivated by our opponent.

“Are our guys going to be excited about playing the game? Absolutely, because of the rivalry, because it’s Clemson, because they’ve got a good football team. That’s all great, but we need to be able to walk between the white lines and be motivated by our preparation against a really good football team. That’s what I’m trying to preach as much as anything, to go away from the ups and downs that you have because of who you’re lined up against. We don’t need to let that matter. It needs to be about South Carolina and our preparation.”

Chris Vannini is in his fifth year with and serves as its managing editor. He has previously written for the Detroit Free Press, The Oakland Press, The State News,, 247Sports and SB Nation.  A graduate of Michigan State University, Chris now lives in the Dallas-Fort Worth area.  Be sure to follow @coachingsearch and send emails to