Will Muschamp: We only have 11 seniors, and this isn't like basketball

Posted by: Chris Vannini on Monday May 22, 2017


South Carolina reaching a bowl game in year one was a boost for Will Muschamp and the Gamecocks, but the real reward for that might come in year two.

There are only 11 scholarship seniors on the roster. Not many teams will have fewer. So with a roster loaded with young players, the extra bowl practices and bowl experience were even more valuable.

“You look at our team last year and going into next year, over 70 percent of our roster is freshmen and sophomores,” Muschamp said on Smashmouth Radio 99.1. “Going into next year, we’ve only got 11 seniors. We’re a young team.

Football is a developmental game. You’ve got to take snaps. It’s not like basketball where you can play one-on-one and get better. You have to go play the game. To get those snaps in December for the preparation of that game and the latter half of the roster was critical for us.”

What also helped Muschamp was putting together a top-25 recruiting class in a short amount of time after he arrived. It was the fourth-highest class among programs with a new head coach, and the 27 signees was much more than the other three. He added the No. 21 class this year.

“Normally, that’s your worst class, because you’re hiring a staff, guys changing from one school to another, and it’s hard for a student-athlete to understand you’re at one school one day and South Carolina the next,” he said. “People think you just build a relationship with them. No, it’s different when you’re selling a different school. That’s part of it. To sign Jake Bentley, Bryan Edwards, Rico Dowdle and guys that contributed to our team, played well as true freshmen (was huge).”

Muschamp said South Carolina plans to expand fall camp, following the NCAA ban on two-a-days. Some schools could add as much as a week, in order to make up for lost practices. Others will not change much.

“In order to get your practice in, you’re going to have to, because you’ve eliminated two-a-days,” he said. “Really, the last thee or four years, we only had maybe three two-a-days doing camp. You get 29 (practices) allotted, but generally we do 27 leading up to your first ballgame, six practices for your first opponent. In order to get that, we’re going to have to move it back a little bit.”

It will be a challenging start to the season. The Gamecocks open against NC State, followed by a trip to Missouri and a home game against Kentucky.

Chris Vannini is in his fifth year with CoachingSearch.com and serves as its managing editor. He has previously written for the Detroit Free Press, The Oakland Press, The State News, MLive.com, 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 chris@coachingsearch.com.

Will Muschamp: We only have 11 seniors, and this isn't like basketball

Posted by: Chris Vannini on Monday May 22, 2017


South Carolina reaching a bowl game in year one was a boost for Will Muschamp and the Gamecocks, but the real reward for that might come in year two.

There are only 11 scholarship seniors on the roster. Not many teams will have fewer. So with a roster loaded with young players, the extra bowl practices and bowl experience were even more valuable.

“You look at our team last year and going into next year, over 70 percent of our roster is freshmen and sophomores,” Muschamp said on Smashmouth Radio 99.1. “Going into next year, we’ve only got 11 seniors. We’re a young team.

Football is a developmental game. You’ve got to take snaps. It’s not like basketball where you can play one-on-one and get better. You have to go play the game. To get those snaps in December for the preparation of that game and the latter half of the roster was critical for us.”

What also helped Muschamp was putting together a top-25 recruiting class in a short amount of time after he arrived. It was the fourth-highest class among programs with a new head coach, and the 27 signees was much more than the other three. He added the No. 21 class this year.

“Normally, that’s your worst class, because you’re hiring a staff, guys changing from one school to another, and it’s hard for a student-athlete to understand you’re at one school one day and South Carolina the next,” he said. “People think you just build a relationship with them. No, it’s different when you’re selling a different school. That’s part of it. To sign Jake Bentley, Bryan Edwards, Rico Dowdle and guys that contributed to our team, played well as true freshmen (was huge).”

Muschamp said South Carolina plans to expand fall camp, following the NCAA ban on two-a-days. Some schools could add as much as a week, in order to make up for lost practices. Others will not change much.

“In order to get your practice in, you’re going to have to, because you’ve eliminated two-a-days,” he said. “Really, the last thee or four years, we only had maybe three two-a-days doing camp. You get 29 (practices) allotted, but generally we do 27 leading up to your first ballgame, six practices for your first opponent. In order to get that, we’re going to have to move it back a little bit.”

It will be a challenging start to the season. The Gamecocks open against NC State, followed by a trip to Missouri and a home game against Kentucky.

Chris Vannini is in his fifth year with CoachingSearch.com and serves as its managing editor. He has previously written for the Detroit Free Press, The Oakland Press, The State News, MLive.com, 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 chris@coachingsearch.com.