Muschamp: UF football facility upgrades were in his plans

Florida’s Indoor Practice Facility had been in the works under his watch, former UF coach Will Muschamp said Thursday at SEC Media Days in Hoover, Ala. [File] HOOVER, Ala. — Jim McElwain has clearly energized and led the drive to upgrade Florida’s football facilities, but the school had already started moving in that direction before McElwain arrived, South Carolina coach Will Muschamp said Thursday.

Muschamp said UF’s subpar facilities had become an issue that needed to be addressed.

“I don’t think there’s any question,” the former UF coach said at SEC Media Days. “You know, there was a plan to move forward. I mean, the indoor that they finished was done. Jeremy (Foley) and I, we had done that about a year and a half before. We agreed to get the indoor done. I think we had a plan moving forward to continue to enhance our situation there. But that’s part of it.

“At the end of the day, we don’t believe in bells and whistles, but recruits do. That’s a fact. And they want to see new. They want to see shiny. They want to see progress. And there’s no doubt that helps you in the program.”

Tigers to challenge Tide

With the addition of quarterback Jarrett Stidham, the highly regarded transfer from Baylor, some are predicting Auburn has a chance to make a run at Alabama in the West this season.

Gus Malzahn certainly seems happy with where his team is at heading into his fifth season.

“This season we have one of the more experienced teams coming back in our league offensively,” Malzahn said. “We hired Chip Lindsey (as offensive coordinator). I’m excited about Chip. I’ve got a lot of confidence in Chip. He’s going to provide more balance for us. And he’s a quarterback guru, too. So I feel very good about that.

“And probably the thing that I’m most excited about is we have quality depth and our quarterback position. And that’s been our Achilles’ heel the last two years. That gives me, I know our coaches and our players, comfort.”

Listening to Malzahn, it sounds like Stidham is the real deal.

“I’ve got a lot of history with Stidham from the standpoint we actually recruited him in high school,” he said. “He’s a good athlete. He’s a lot better athlete than people think. I think he started at wide receiver his sophomore year. He can run. He’s got a 35-36 inch vertical. He runs a 4.6.

“In our league, you have to escape. Things are going to break down. The defensive lines are too good. You have to have a quarterback that can escape pressure, keep his eyes down the field, know when to throw it, know when to run it, and protect the football and make good decisions.

“We had a chance to really evaluate him in the spring. Our defensive line is pretty talented. And so we got a lot of good information. And we like the way he reacted.”AU happy out WestAlthough it would make geographical sense to move Auburn to the […]