"We have a lot of things to prove defensively based on last year's inconsistent performances," said Coach Will Muschamp in his press conference of August 27.
Hey coach! Are referring to the defensive unit that ranked No.8 in the nation last season? The heart and soul of your football team all last year?
Know what I'm hearing here? I'm hearing a coach who wants to make a big statement in this opening game.
So many times in these boring press conferences, it is as much about how coaches say things as it is what they say. Throughout the question and answer session, the coach was pleasant enough, but you got the feeling—at least I did—that there was something about at the boiling point, just below the surface.
Apparently, this goes back to last season, just before the Florida State Game, in front of the home crowd in Gainesville. The fans showed up big, with 90,798 on hand in a sellout.
The crowd came to see the home team dismantle the Furman Paladins, as they were getting ready for the Seminoles. The point spread said it all, as the Gators were giving up 31.
But Furman didn't get the script. Instead, the Paladins jumped out to a 22-7 first quarter lead.
By the beginning of the fourth quarter, Florida held a shaky 37-32 lead. However, the Gators would go on the score the game's final 17 points for a 54-32 win.
Furman torched the highly touted Gator defense for 446 total yards, including 233 rushing. They also controlled the clock, 37 to 23 minutes in possession time.
Only one other team got anywhere near that kind of offensive performance against the Gators last season. That was LSU (453 yards).
Now, back to the press conference and what the coach actually said. There was his kind assessment of the Bowling Green Falcon's offense. In it, he mentioned the stats of junior quarterback Matt Schilz (3024 pass yards, 28 TD and 13 int.).
Also, Muschamp was complimentary of Bowling Green coach Dave Clawson and his staff of four seasons.
Next, to what he didn't say but was somehow coming through. No words were uttered about the performance against Furman while he talked about this game. But I felt his body language was screaming something out.
That being, he expects the Gator defense to do better—much better—in this game than the last time they appeared before the home crowd. I guess you could say it's like a make up game for Florida.
The Bowling Green offense is pretty good. Their quarterback is both good and experienced. Still, I just don't think these guys are going to score much against the Gators.
All that, out of what Coach Muschamp didn't say at a press conference.
Wow, I must have ESP(N)?
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