You can argue all you want about whether Will Muschamp was ready to take over the head coaching duties at a school like Florida -- but his press conference at SEC Media Days shows that the former Texas head-coach-in-waiting is a pro.
For one thing, Muschamp's opening statement was a near-perfect filibuster meant to distract, confuse and perhaps temporarily daze the assembled reporters. It runs on for 1,971 words. He spent a paragraph -- 33 words, according to the official transcript -- on the punter. Buried at the end was some of the only significant news of SEC Media Days -- that A.C. Leonard had decided to transfer. Beat writers picked up on it despite the avalanche of words, but Muschamp made them work for it.
If the intent was to prevent reporters from asking questions, though, it was a valiant but unsuccessful attempt. Muschamp still got one of the longest series of questions that any coach faced in Hoover. But he answered some of them artfully, including a deft walk-back of his slam against College Station.
I said before, it's an SEC-like atmosphere. Great fan base, a lot of traditions, history, all that. It will be loud, it will be fun. Our guys are looking forward to competing in College Station. They'll be ready to go.
Of course, Muschamp also said that people would likely only go to College Station once, but that didn't make it into his recounting of earlier remarks.
Georgia -- Muschamp's alma mater -- wasn't so lucky in his remarks. Asked about the occasional conversations about moving the World Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party from Jacksonville to campus, the Florida coach got in a not-so-subtle dig at the man now leading Muschamp's old school. Mark Richt has suggested in the past that he might like to see the game moved.
Coming over the St. John's River, as a competitor, if that doesn't get your blood boiling, there's something wrong with you. You look at the tradition, the history of the game there. Coach Dooley never complained about it being there.
Bravo, sir, bravo. Whatever might happen to Will Muschamp during the rest of his tenure in Gainesville, the man has proven he is nothing short of an artist when it comes to the preseason press conference.