Auburn Football: Will Muschamp Chose Auburn “To Win Championships”


Why did Will Muschamp accept Gus Malzahn’s offer to become defensive coordinator of the Auburn football team?

As Coach Boom said himself, “to win championships.”

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Word leaked Friday evening that Muschamp finally decided to come back to Auburn, and not long after, the university released a statement which confirmed that Muschamp Watch was finally over.

It didn’t say much, but a short quote from the former Florida head coach gave some insight into why he chose the Tigers over other suitors, believed to include South Carolina, Texas A&M, the NFL and a head coaching opportunity at Houston.

“My family, Carol, Jackson, Whit, and I are excited about coming back to Auburn and I look forward to working with Coach Malzahn to win championships,” Muschamp said.

Muschamp will meet with the media at 10:30AM Saturday morning, and he will likely expand on that statement. But right now it seems pretty clear, Muschamp chose Auburn because he wants to win, first and foremost.

By joining forces with Malzahn, he’s got a great chance to win a lot.

Malzahn knows a thing or two about championships. He led the Auburn offense in 2010 when the Tigers won the national championship, then he won the Sun Belt title in his only year as the head coach at Arkansas State.

Nov 1, 2014; Jacksonville, FL, USA; Florida Gators head coach Will Muschamp reatcs on the sidelines against the Georgia Bulldogs during the second half at EverBank Field. Florida Gators defeated the Georgia Bulldogs 38-20. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

In his first season as the head coach of the Tigers, Auburn led the nation rushing on the way to an SEC Championship (there’s that word again) and a spot in the BCS National Championship Game (there it is again).

Muschamp probably could have made more money somewhere else, though he’ll do just fine as the highest paid coordinator in the nation, plus a handsome buyout from Florida.

He could have been a head coach again, but he’s already shown his ego is in check as they come. Remember his press conference at Florida that announced his firing?

“I stand by my statement yesterday, that we didn’t win enough football games, that’s the bottom line. You’ve got to win games,” Muschamp said. “We didn’t get that done. Very disappointed and frustrated that did not happen. Certainly had our opportunities, especially this year, keeping a healthy roster and having the opportunity to win football games, and we didn’t get it done.”

Despite his disappointment, Muschamp owned up to his faults as the head coach of the Gators, and he earned a lot of respect while he was there.

“He’s won a lot of championships in his career; he will win more, I promise you that,” Florida Athletic Director Jeremy Foley said. “It just was not been working here as we all envisioned and certainly not as he envisioned four years ago when he came aboard. When things are not working as envisioned, you’ve got to make a difficult decision despite the tremendous effort he put in.”

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  • There’s that word again.

    Of course, to win championships, Muschamp will need to turnaround a struggling Auburn defense.

    The main issue was a bend-don’t-break 2013 defense finally broke in the second half of 2014. Auburn surrendered 31 points or more in six straight conference games for the first time in school history, allowed 388.7 yards per game in the regular season, and surrendered 55 points to Alabama in the Iron Bowl. The Tigers also rank in the bottom third of the SEC in scoring defense, pass defense, rush defense and total defense.

    That combination led to Ellis Johnson’s departure, and ultimately, the arrival of Muschamp.

    Now, the Tigers will have a defensive mastermind on their sidelines that has guided seven of his last eight defenses to top ten national rankings, and wants to win more than anything.

    He led a top three defense at Auburn. At Texas, his unit led the nation with 119 sacks over a three year period. At LSU, the 2003 Tigers led the nation with 67 rushing yards allowed per game.

    Oh, and they won the National Championship.

    There’s that word again.

    Next: What the Muschamp Hire Means To Auburn

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