Josh Kendall

The biggest thing Will Muschamp learned from Nick Saban about recruiting

South Carolina head football coach Will Muschamp has copied as much as he could carry from Alabama head coach Nick Saban, and he’s not ashamed to admit that.

“I would say the foundation of our program (came from the way Saban runs his program),” Muschamp said Wednesday during the SEC teleconference.

There’s one area though where Muschamp particularly learned a lot from Saban, and that is in recruiting. And there’s one specific thing in recruiting that Muschamp has carried with him. That’s the evaluation process.

Ironically, Muschamp learned the most from Saban about that not in college football but in his one season as the Miami Dolphins defensive coordinator under Saban. Under the NFL’s more relaxed evaluation rules, Saban and Muschamp could take a closer look at prospects than they could as college coaches. That’s when Muschamp learned the finer points of all the position-specific criteria Saban was looking for and the importance of making a detailed evaluation of those.

“You have to make sure you define it for your staff as far as what you want,” Muschamp said.

Beyond recruiting, the Gamecocks practice schedules throughout the year are based on Saban’s plans, Muschamp said.

“There is no question obviously I drew a lot from Nick and the job that he has done,” Muschamp said. “A lot of our structure of our organization is very similar.”