Will Muschamp: Tackling goes back to the recruiting process

Posted by: Chris Vannini on Saturday July 29, 2017

Two-a-days are banned, and there’s less contact in practice than every before, so how does Will Muschamp emphasize it with freshmen in camp?

It goes back to recruiting.

"A lot of tackling has to do with `want-to.' A guy has to want to do it,” Muschamp said this weekend. “That’s a part of the recruiting and evaluation process. You evaluate the guys who really enjoy the physicality of the game. I think this freshman class, that was a huge part of the evaluation process, getting guys who enjoy sticking their face in the fan and tackling.

“Toughness, to me, comes down to the ability to run against good people and stopping the run against good people.”

Last year, South Carolina was No. 107 in rushing offense (3.68 ypc) and No. 92 in rushing defense (4.8 ypc).

“But it's not just about the lines of scrimmage,” Muschamp said. “Right now, with the way teams are blocking offensively, the ball is on the perimeter. You've got to be tough at in the secondary and at the corner position. You've got to be tough at the safety and nickel. You've got to be tough at wide receiver to block downfield to create the explosive runs for your offense.

It's an element of toughness that goes through all 11 guys. It's not just about both lines of scrimmage. That's where we've really got to challenge our guys to improve.”

With camp opening, a number of high-profile Gamecocks have announced they’re shutting off social media for the season. Rival Clemson has banned social media in the past, but Muschamp says he has nothing to do with it in Columbia.

"That's all on them,” he said. “I met with the team today, and we addressed social media. We talked about the positive impact it can have in marketing your brand, but we also talked about the negative impact it can have and when you press send, it's over. Our guys just need to be smart.

“We don't want to talk about our football activities on the internet. That's no one else's business. What happens here stays here. Our guys understand that. I just ask them to use good judgment. I'm not going to be the Twitter police. That's not something I care to do. I let our guys use good judgment and make good choices and decisions."

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.