The Daily Gamecock

Head football coach Will Muschamp, players discuss improvements to be made before Florida game

University of South Carolina football head coach Will Muschamp claps while walking down the sideline of the football game against the Tennessee Volunteers.
University of South Carolina football head coach Will Muschamp claps while walking down the sideline of the football game against the Tennessee Volunteers.

In a press conference Tuesday afternoon, South Carolina head football coach Will Muschamp and various other football players discussed the outcome of last week's game versus Tennessee and what the team is looking like for in this week's road game against Florida. 

Muschamp said graduate transfer quarterback Collin Hill's "calm, cool demeanor" was something that impressed him down the stretch during the loss to Tennessee.

"He has an air of confidence about him as a player that I think kinda permeates throughout our offense and our football team," Muschamp said. 

Senior tight end Nick Muse echoed Muschamp's praise of Hill and said that he would describe Hill with three words: "cool, calm and collected." Junior offensive lineman Dylan Wonnum said Hill "was always positive and he just kept [them] going" while the Gamecocks were trying to put together a comeback during the second half of the game. 

One thing Wonnum thought the team could improve on from the Tennessee game was communication between the offensive line. 

"Communication, you know, it could always be better, but I feel like we did an OK job," Wonnum said. 

Muschamp said the Tennessee defense caused some issues for the Gamecock offensive line.

"We got whipped at the tight end position as far as the run game was concerned, that created some issues," Muschamp said.

He went on to say that after the game the team "did a nice job making adjustments" in the second half of the game when the offense scored on four of six possessions in the second half.

In terms of the entire offense, Muse said he thought the team was "pretty decent" and that "there was obviously some good and some bad," highlighting the "second quarter or early third quarter" as a time during the game where he felt like the team wasn't prepared. Muse said offensively the team relied heavily on senior wide receiver Shi Smith but that the team needed to "get a lot more guys involved."

Muschamp said the team "[needs] some more guys to step up," and that he was disappointed in some guys other than Xavier Leggette and Smith in that position. Muschamp also said that guys such as freshman Luke Doty would be seeing more opportunities at the wide receiver position this week.

On the defensive side of the ball, sophomore defensive back Jammie Robinson said he thought that the Gamecock defense "played pretty good" and that it "gave up a couple plays," but one play didn't determine the game.

Muschamp said explosive plays hurt the team during the Tennessee game and a "huge part" of staying away from those plays is playing assignment football.

"We've got to do a better job of being more opportunistic defensively and a little better execution here and there," Muschamp said. 

The Gamecocks will be traveling to Gainesville, Florida this weekend to take on the No. 3 ranked Florida Gators for their second game of the season. 

From a personnel standpoint, Muschamp said Florida has "a lot of experience on the offensive side of the ball" and that quarterback Kyle Trask has "great pocket presence" and is "a really good football player" in general.

Muschamp also said tight end Kyle Pitts is "probably the best tight end in the country" and would be a difficult player for the Gamecock defense to match up against. 

The game will begin at noon on Saturday, and until then Muschamp said he's "looking forward to getting back on the field."


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