According to Gus Malzahn, Auburn’s move to get Will Muschamp was an exceptionally positive one.

“Defensively in the offseason, we hired Will Muschamp, in my opinion, the best defensive mind in all of football, not just college football,” he said at the SEC Media Days. “Our defensive players have taken on his personality, which I really like.”

He added: ”┬áHe just has that presence around him that he gives all the coaches confidence. He gives his players confidence. And he’s got the it factor. So we’re very blessed to combine his defense with an offense that we’ve been running. We think the future’s very bright.”

Muschamp’s Florida team last year defensively was one of the best in college football, only giving up 19.5 points per game – good for 11th in the country. He also recruited some great defensive players – including the exceptional Vernon Hargreaves, who’s one of the best ‘shutdown’ corners in college football. The problem for Muschamp was his offense – it was 72nd in the country and truly awful for most of his reign. He was fired at the end of the season.

Having said that, Muschamp may not be able to solve the school’s gaping secondary. “Our secondary will be thin. We do have some of our main guys back, but we’re going to have to ask some young guys to step up as far as that goes.”

He also noted that new starting quarterback Jeremy Johnson could “flat out throw”, but noted: “He’s a better runner than people think….. He probably runs a 4.6.”

Malzahn also put out an early shot at Alabama for the next Iron Bowl clash (which may well turn out to be the SEC West decider), saying: “I like our chances”.

Speaking of shots, Malzahn also said about Jim Harbaugh’s ‘satellite camps’ idea, in which schools would go across country holding camps in an attempt to get recruits: “The chances of a team up north coming into our state and a player that us or Alabama wants are slim to none. So it was just a matter of that was the big story.”



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