USC Gamecocks Football

Will Muschamp has both coordinators locked in

From Sept. 20, 2014: Will Muschamp (left) and Travaris Robinson during their time at Florida.
From Sept. 20, 2014: Will Muschamp (left) and Travaris Robinson during their time at Florida. USA TODAY Sports

Will Muschamp was ready for the South Carolina job when he got it Sunday.

By the end of the day, the 44-year-old former head coach at Florida had filled the two most important positions on his coaching staff. Muschamp has hired 34-year-old Miami native Travaris Robinson as defensive coordinator and 43-year-old Kurt Roper as offensive coordinator, multiple sources told The State on condition of anonymity.

Robinson was the defensive backs coach at Florida when Muschamp was the Gators head coach from 2011-2014. He and Muschamp also served on Auburn’s staff last year, and Robinson was rated the No. 1 recruiter in the country by a panel of ESPN.com recruiting analysts in 2014.

Roper, who is currently an offensive assistant with the Cleveland Browns, served as Muschamp’s offensive coordinator in Muschamp’s final season as Florida’s head coach. The Gators were eighth in the SEC in scoring (30.3 points per game) and 12th in the SEC in total offense (367.6 yards per game) that season. Roper, who served as Duke’s offensive coordinator before being hired by Muschamp, is expected to leave the Browns and begin recruiting for South Carolina immediately.

Bobby Bentley, who turned Byrnes High into a national powerhouse, also is expected to join Muschamp’s staff on the offensive side of the ball, according to a source. Bentley has been an offensive analyst with Auburn. Former Gamecocks star running back Marcus Lattimore, who played for Bentley at Byrnes, has been contacted about a position on Muschamp’s staff, although it’s unclear if it would be as an on-field assistant or in another role. Former South Carolina recruiting coordinator Shane Beamer hasn’t been contacted yet about the possibility of joining Muschamp’s staff, a source said.

Former Gamecocks and Auburn defensive coordinator Ellis Johnson and current Auburn linebackers coach Lance Thompson have had discussions with Muschamp about joining the defensive staff in some capacity. Johnson presided over one of the most successful defensive runs in school history, and Thompson is considered one of the country’s top recruiters.

Current South Carolina wide receivers coach Steve Spurrier Jr. could be retained by Muschamp in some capacity, a source told The State.

A possible addition to the defensive staff is Colorado State defensive coordinator and safeties coach Tyson Summers, who is being targeted both by Muschamp and new Georgia head coach Kirby Smart, the source said. Summers was the defensive coordinator at UCF before joining the Rams and coached against South Carolina in the Gamecocks’ 28-25 win over UCF in 2013. He also has coached at Georgia, Georgia Southern and UAB.

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