Somehow, the SEC Network got Will Muschamp to start Vanderbilt week by talking about Georgia.
“Kirby (Smart) is an outstanding football coach, and he’s got a really good staff,” South Carolina’s head coach said Monday during an appearance on The Paul Finebaum Show. “You can see they are well-coached. They are fast and physical. Defensively those names have been there for two or three years. When I was defensive coordinator at Auburn, Lorenzo Carter and all those guys were playing. Those guys have played a bunch of football.”
Muschamp was asked about the No. 3 Bulldogs by Finebaum co-host Laura Rutledge. The Gamecocks (5-2, 3-2 SEC) take on Georgia (7-0, 4-0) in two weeks in Athens, Ga. This week, South Carolina plays Vanderbilt (3-4, 0-4) at 4 p.m. Saturday in Williams-Brice Stadium.
“They’ve got some elite backs who are playing extremely well and the offensive line has really matured,” Muschamp said of the Bulldogs. “(Georgia offensive line coach) Sam Pittman has done a fantastic job with those guys up front. They are playing extremely well, but we play Vanderbilt on Saturday and that’s who we are looking toward.”
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Muschamp told Finebaum and Rutledge that he and his staff did “peek ahead” during their just passed bye week to make sure they were ready for the final five games of the regular season.
“It’s always good to peek ahead, to take some notes on ideas that in game week you might want to get accomplished,” Muschamp said.
Both Finebaum and Rutledge praised Muschamp during and after his brief appearance on the show, pointing out that the Gamecocks have exceeded expectations to this point in the season.
“We inherited a bunch of good young men when we came to South Carolina and our older players have really bridged with our younger players that we brought into the program and really have come together for a common purpose to be successful,” Muschamp said. “We have got an outstanding staff. Our guys do a really good job of coaching and developing our players. Everything here is on pace to be very successful.”
After Muschamp’s appearance, Finebaum said he believes the coach has grown since his last head coaching job.
“This is a different Will Muschamp than we saw at Florida,” Finebaum said. “He is very likable.”