|Annual salary||$3 million|
August 3, 1971 |
|Coaching career (HC unless noted)|
|1998||West Georgia (DB)|
|1999||Eastern Kentucky (DB)|
|2000||Valdosta State (DC/DB)|
|2005||Miami Dolphins (AHC)|
|Head coaching record|
|Accomplishments and honors|
|SEC Co-Coach of the Year (2012)|
Muschamp has built a reputation for his strong defenses and his intense demeanor during games and practice. In his second season as defensive coordinator at Auburn, Muschamp was a finalist for the 2007 Broyles Award for the most outstanding assistant coach in college football. Prior to accepting the job at Florida, the University of Texas had announced that Muschamp would eventually succeed Mack Brown as head coach of the Longhorns and designated him the "head coach in waiting."
Muschamp was born in Rome, Georgia and grew up in Gainesville, Florida. He attended Martha Manson Academy elementary school and Oak Hall High School in Gainesville. His family moved back to Rome, where his father became the headmaster of the Darlington School, and where he graduated from high school. Muschamp played football, basketball, baseball, and ran track for the Darlington Tigers.
Muschamp attended the University of Georgia in Athens, Georgia. He walked on to the Georgia Bulldogs football team and played safety from 1991 to 1994. As an undergraduate, he was initiated into the Kappa Alpha Order (Gamma Chapter) and also earned a spot on the SEC Academic Honor Roll in 1993. He was a defensive team captain his senior season, and played in two bowl games with the Bulldogs. Former Georgia offensive coordinator and Bulldogs quarterback Mike Bobo, who was Muschamp's college teammate, described him as "a hard worker. Very physical. Very intense." Muschamp graduated from the University of Georgia with a bachelor's degree in 1994.
After graduating from Georgia, Muschamp became a graduate assistant coach at Auburn University, where he worked under defensive coordinators Wayne Hall and Bill Oliver in 1995 and 1996. He earned a master's degree in education from Auburn in 1996, then spent a season each at the University of West Georgia and Eastern Kentucky University as the defensive backs coach, before becoming the defensive coordinator at Valdosta State University in 2000.
Muschamp joined Nick Saban's staff at LSU as the linebackers coach in 2001, before rising to become the LSU defensive coordinator in 2002. In 2003, LSU won the BCS Championship. That season, Muschamp's defense led the nation in both scoring defense (11.0 points per game) and total defense (252.0 yards per game). The Tigers topped the SEC in every major defensive category and also ranked second nationally in defensive pass efficiency (89.8 rating) and third in rushing defense (67.0 yards per game). While at LSU, Muschamp coached four All-Americans including Bradie James, Chad Lavalais, Corey Webster and Marcus Spears. Muschamp left LSU with Saban after the 2004 season to join the Miami Dolphins staff as the assistant head coach and defensive coordinator.
As assistant head coach/defense of the Miami Dolphins, Muschamp, along with defensive coordinator Richard Smith, supervised a defense that ranked fifteenth in total defense in the NFL. The Dolphins allowed 19.8 points per game and 317.4 total yards per game during the 2005 NFL season. The unit also ranked second in the NFL with 49 quarterback sacks.
When the Auburn defensive coordinator position became available in January 2006, Muschamp took the opportunity to return to the college game. In 2006, Muschamp's first season at Auburn, the defense finished seventh among NCAA Division I-FBS teams in scoring defense, allowing only 21 touchdowns. In 2007, Auburn led the SEC in scoring defense and finished in the top 10 in four defensive categories (ranking 7th nationally in pass efficiency and 6th nationally in total defense, passing defense and scoring defense among NCAA Division I-FBS teams).
On January 3, 2008, Muschamp interviewed for the vacant co-defensive coordinator job for the University of Texas. The next day, he resigned from Auburn to accept the position with Texas. Muschamp was slated to receive a raise to $425,000 per year with a two-year, no buyout, contract at Auburn for 2008, which would have made him the highest paid assistant coach in the SEC. Muschamp received a contract with a $425,000 annual salary at Texas, making him the highest paid assistant coach in the Big 12.
On November 18, 2008 the University of Texas announced Muschamp would succeed Brown whenever he retired. They agreed in principle to increase Muschamp’s salary to $900,000. There was no timetable set for Brown’s departure, and both Brown and UT said they expected Brown to stay a long time. Fifty-nine-year-old Brown was under contract as head coach through 2016. Upon Brown's retirement, Muschamp was slated to get a five-year contract as head coach.
In announcing the move, the University of Texas noted, "Muschamp's Longhorn defense is leading the Big 12 in rushing defense (82.5 ypg/25th NCAA) and scoring defense (19.5 ppg/25th NCAA). UT ranks second nationally with four sacks per game. The Horns have held all of their Big 12 opponents below their season scoring average and limited six foes to 14 points or less." UT Athletics Director DeLoss Dodds said, "With the landscape in college football and all of the changes around the country, I've been looking at this for the last couple of years. When it's not working, you have to go outside and make changes. Things are going well here, it's working, so it's best to be prepared to build from inside and that's what we're doing. Mack has provided outstanding leadership and continues to elevate our football program to a level as high as anyone in the country. We hope he stays a long time and he will be our coach as long as he wants, but this assures us that when the time comes, we have the right guy to step up into that position and continue to build on the great things we're accomplishing."
Prior to this announcement, Muschamp had been mentioned in association with head coaching job openings at Clemson, Tennessee, Washington, and Auburn. He had been planning an off-week interview with Clemson but as a result of this deal decided instead to wait his turn at Texas, saying, "This is a special place. I think it is 'the' elite job in the country." Austin American-Statesman columnist Kirk Bohls predicted this would be good for the program: "Muschamp's ascension conveys to fans and recruits that Texas values what it has now as one of the elite programs in the country and wants to maintain. This smart, bold move should bring coaching stability, sustained recruiting and possibly expanded recruiting into the Southeast and a continued framework for success."
On December 11, 2010, University of Florida athletic director Jeremy Foley named Muschamp to succeed Urban Meyer as the head coach of the Florida Gators football program. In his first year as head coach, Muschamp led the Gators to a 7–6 record overall and a 3-5 record in the SEC. This was the first losing conference record for the Gators since 1979. In 2011, Muschamp's Gators struggled on offense, ranking 98th in total offense and 83rd in passing offense. Muschamp's Gators earned a 24–17 Gator Bowl victory over the Ohio State Buckeyes playing under interim coach, Luke Fickell. The following spring, Muschamp brought in the No. 5 recruiting class in the nation according to Scout.com. However, the class had no top offensive talent and only two offensive linemen.
In 2012, Muschamp led the Gators to an 11–2 season with four wins over teams that were ranked among the top twelve of the BCS standings at the end of the regular season, including Texas A&M, LSU, South Carolina, and Florida State. The season also included a near loss to a non-BCS school Louisiana-Lafayette and a loss to Georgia in which Muschamp's Gators scored no touchdowns, costing the Gators the SEC East Division Title. The season ended with a disappointing 23–33 loss to the Louisville Cardinals in the Sugar Bowl. Although the 2012 Gators had a top defense, the season was primarily hampered by the lack of offensive output again. In 2012 the Gators offense ranked 97th in total offense and 116th (out of 124 teams) in passing offense. The following spring, Muschamp brought in the No. 7 recruiting class in the nation according to Scout.com.
In 2013, Muschamp led the Gators to a 4–8 season, the Gators' first losing season since 1979. Muschamp again had a losing record in the SEC, 3–5. This made Muschamp the first Gators coach to have two losing SEC records since the 1950s. This also ended a 22-year bowl streak that dated back to 1991 when the Gators came off probation. The season included two particularly humiliating losses. The first was a homecoming loss to Vanderbilt—their first loss to the Commodores since 1988 and first at home since 1945. Muschamp's Gators also lost to an FCS team, Georgia Southern, the first loss to a lower division team in the history of the program. Muschamp lost to traditional rival Georgia for the third consecutive year and a 30-point loss to Florida State in the season's final game dropped his record against the Seminoles to 1–2. The Gator defense was again one of the best in the nation, ranking eighth in total defense. However, the Gator offense was again ineffective, ranking 114th nationally in total offense and 107th in passing. After the season, Florida athletic director Jeremy Foley brought Muschamp back for another season. The following spring, Muschamp's Gators brought in the No. 9 recruiting class, which trailed five other SEC teams and rival Florida State.
Despite a lackluster 2013 season, expectations were high for Muschamp and the Gators for the 2014 campaign. After a 42–13 homecoming loss to Missouri, some Gator fans called for Muschamp to be fired immediately. However, Foley refused to do so and allowed Muschamp to coach the annual Florida-Georgia football game. Florida, a 10-point underdog came in starting true freshman Treon Harris with throwing the ball only six times the Gators compiled 428 yards rushing to upset the 11th ranked Bulldogs 38–20. However, after a 23–20 overtime home loss to South Carolina 2 weeks later on November 16, 2014, Foley announced that Muschamp would be stepping down following the conclusion of the 2014 regular season, citing the season's high number of losses. Muschamp remarked, "I was given every opportunity to get it done here and I simply didn't win enough games—that is the bottom line. I’m disappointed that I didn't get it done and it is my responsibility to get it done."
Return to Auburn
On December 12, 2014, a week after the end of the regular season, Muschamp became defensive coordinator for the Auburn Tigers. He agreed to a three-year deal with the Tigers that was worth between $1.6 million and $1.8 million annually. This deal made him the highest-paid defensive coordinator in college football. He became Auburn's fourth defensive coordinator in five years and replaced Ellis Johnson, who was fired the day after the Tigers' 55-44 loss to Alabama in November of the same year.
Notable head coaches under whom Muschamp has served:
Former Muschamp assistants who have become head coaches:
Muschamp's wife Carol (née Davis) is from Thomaston, Georgia. They have two sons, Jackson and Whit. His brother Mike Muschamp is the head football coach at The Lovett School in Atlanta, Georgia who led the team to a state championship in 2013.
Head coaching record
|Florida Gators (Southeastern Conference) (2011–2014)|
|2011||Florida||7–6||3–5||3rd (Eastern)||W Gator|
|2012||Florida||11–2||7–1||T–1st (Eastern)||L Sugar†||10||9|
|2014||Florida||6–5||4–4||3rd (Eastern)||Birmingham[note 1]|
|South Carolina Gamecocks (Southeastern Conference) (2016–present)|
|National championship Conference title Conference division title|
|†Indicates Bowl Coalition, Bowl Alliance, BCS, or CFP / New Years' Six bowl.
#Rankings from final Coaches Poll.
°Rankings from final AP Poll.
- Florida Gators
- Florida–Georgia football rivalry
- Georgia Bulldogs
- History of the University of Florida
- List of Auburn University people
- List of Kappa Alpha Order members
- List of University of Georgia people
- University Athletic Association
- Woodbery, Evan (2007-10-17). "Muschamp's intensity a hit with players". Mobile Press-Register. Retrieved 2007-10-17.
- Holt, Bob (2006-08-03). "Coordinator switch not caging Tigers". Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. Archived from the original on 2007-10-23. Retrieved 2007-10-17.
- "Muschamp Named A Finalist For Broyles Award". Auburn Athletic Department. 2007-11-27. Retrieved 2007-11-27.
- "Muschamp to succeed Brown as Texas head coach". Austin American-Statesman (Cox Enterprises). November 18, 2008. Retrieved 2008-11-18.
- "The Will Muschamp File". MackBrown-TexasFootball.com (University of Texas & Host Interactive). November 18, 2008. Retrieved 2008-11-18.
- "Muschamp to take over Texas when Brown retires". SI.com (Time Inc.). November 18, 2008. Archived from the original on December 6, 2008. Retrieved 2008-11-18.
- "Auburn Names Will Muschamp Defensive Coordinator". Auburn University Athletics Department. 2006-02-06. Retrieved 2007-10-17.
- Handwerger, Bradley (2006-11-06). "Muschamp remembers '94 AU-UGA game well". Decatur Daily. Retrieved 2007-10-17.
- Scott Carter, "One-Time Gainesville Native Will Muschamp Returns To Coach Florida Gators," GatorZone.com (December 11, 2010). Retrieved December 11, 2010.
- "2006 FBS National Team Report - Scoring Defense". NCAA.org. Retrieved 2007-11-27.
- "2007 FBS National Team Report - Pass Efficiency Defense". NCAA.org. Retrieved 2007-01-05.
- "2007 FBS National Team Report - Total Defense". NCAA.org. Retrieved 2007-01-05.
- "2007 FBS National Team Report - Pass Defense". NCAA.org. Retrieved 2007-01-05.
- "2007 FBS National Team Report - Scoring Defense". NCAA.org. Retrieved 2007-01-05.
- Austin American-Statesman: No deal yet with Muschamp
- Marshall, Phillip (2008-01-04). "Muschamp resigns as Auburn defensive coordinator, accepts Texas offer". The Huntsville Times. Archived from the original on 2008-01-07. Retrieved 2008-01-04.
- Dodd, Dennis (2008-04-08). "Muschamp brings intensity, impressive resume to Texas' defense". CBS Sportsline. Retrieved 2008-04-09.
- "Muschamp to remain at Texas - Assistant coach to remain as Defensive Coordinator and eventually succeed Mack Brown as head coach". MackBrownTexasFootball.com (University of Texas & Host Interactive). November 18, 2008. Retrieved 2008-11-18.
- Collier, Kiah (August 29, 2007). "Mack Brown's raise approved by UT regents". The Daily Texan (Texas Student Media). Retrieved 2007-08-30.
- Griffin, Tim (November 18, 2008). "Muschamp to take over as coach at Texas when Brown retires". ESPN.com (The Disney Company). Retrieved 2008-11-18.
- Shah, Anup (November 19, 2008). "Football: Muschamp seals future in Texas - After one year as defensive coordinator, Muschamp in line to take reigns from Brown". The Daily Texan (Texas Student Media). Archived from the original on December 8, 2008. Retrieved 2008-11-19.
- Shad, Joe (November 19, 2008). "Virginia Tech AD wants to look in to Texas' coach-in-waiting plan". ESPN.com (The Disney Company). Retrieved 2008-11-19.
- Bohls, Kirk (November 19, 2008). "Where there's a Will - Texas lands great successor". Austin American-Statesman (Cox Enterprises). Retrieved 2008-11-19.
- Carter, Scott. "Muschamp Out at End of Regular Season; Foley to Begin Search for Next Gators' Head Coach". Gatorzone.com. Retrieved 16 November 2014.
- "Coach Boom: Gamecocks pick Will Muschamp to be 34th football coach". The State. December 6, 2015.
- 2012 Florida Football Media Guide, University Athletic Association, Gainesville, Florida (2012).