Who's Next for the Gamecocks?
Muschamp has one foot in the grave already so who can bring back the prosperity of the Spurrier days a decade ago?
Everyone (except Athletic Director Ray Tanner) knows that the end is near for Will Muschamp’s time in South Carolina. I would like to say it was a good idea at first bringing him in, but I’m not an idiot. It was a bad decision that the fans saw coming from a mile away. Now it’s time to go back to speculation: who’s next? While the South Carolina job is not necessarily the most desirable job in College Football, it very well might be the best one available this year. So, with that being said, here are a few people that are likely candidates for the job
Hugh Freeze: Head Coach Liberty University
He’s been in the SEC before and he found success with Ole Miss. Sure he may have payed his players a lot of money and hired prostitutes to lure in recruits, but let’s turn a blind eye to that and focus on football here. Both at Ole Miss and Liberty, he brought winning traditions to programs who very rarely experience it. This year alone, his undefeated Liberty squad has taken down two ACC schools (Syracuse and Virginia Tech) and have dominated the rest of their season. He’s also found a way to make his system work with a mobile quarterback in Auburn transfer Malik Willis (1,339 yards passing, 603 yards rushing, and 19 total TDs). With freshmen QB Luke Doty and 2022 5 star QB commit Gunner Stockton coming in soon, Freeze seems like a perfect fit to scheme an offense made for those two players. I know there is a lot of baggage and hate from his past that will come with hiring him, but if South Carolina wants to get back to where they once were, it’s worth taking it in.
Jamey Chadwell: Head Coach Coastal Carolina University
If you’re looking for a guy who has more connections than just about anyone in the state of South Carolina, look no further than Chadwell. A man who has been coaching within the state almost his entire career, Chadwell has been in the center of one of the best stories of college football this year with the Coastal Carolina Chanticleers. Projected to finish near the bottom of the Sun Belt preseason, his team has seemed to beat every team they have faced handily and have had fun while doing so. Even before coming to Coastal, he found success at the FCS level at Charleston Southern, being named Big South Coach of the Year three times and FCS National Coach of the Year twice in his four years there. He has built great relationships with high school coaches all across the state and would be a younger, lesser name coach that people could rally behind. While it would not necessarily be the sexiest pick, Chadwell has a good enough track record and reputation that could earn his way into an SEC head coaching gig with the Gamecocks.
Shane Beamer: Assistant Head Coach University of Oklahoma
The former outside linebackers coach and special teams coordinator under Steve Spurrier during the glory days at South Carolina, Shane has truly evolved as a coach since he left the program in 2009. Once a defensive minded coach, Shane has shifted his focus to the offensive side of the ball in a high powered Oklahoma offensive system. He’s coached under numerous gurus such as Kirby Smart, Lincoln Riley, and most notably his father Frank Beamer at Virginia Tech. The biggest issue here is his lack of head coaching experience and true wildcard factor that he would bring to the table. He has been known around the country as an excellent recruiter (heard that one before Gamecock fans?) and comes from one of the best coaching pedigrees in college football. Would this be my favorite hire? Not really. But if Ray Tanner stays as AD, it’s one that I could see as likely. Could it work out? There is always a chance. I’m sure Shane is a nice man but for now, I would want him to stay where he is.
Billy Napier: Head Coach University of Louisiana Lafayette
A former quarterback at Furman University in Greenville, South Carolina, Napier is one of the hottest names around the country for head coaching prospects. At one point in his career, he was named the youngest offensive coordinator in Clemson Football history. That time next year, he was fired. During that year, there were many rumors of verbal arguments between Dabo and Napier about play calls which could have influenced his exit from the program after one year of being the coordinator. Honestly, even though he was a Clemson man, he seems to hate Dabo just as much as I do, and I love it. Without even mentioning his dominant presence he has had in the Sun Belt while he has been with the Ragin' Cajuns, we need someone that wants to come in and beat Clemson’s ass. We haven’t had that fire here since Spurrier left and he could become a fan favorite as soon as he steps into the door. He has the resume to back himself up and could be a center piece for South Carolina football for many years.
Joe Brady: Offensive Coordinator Carolina Panthers
A man can dream can’t he?!?!?! Last season as the offensive coordinator at LSU, Brady made Joe Burrow and the Tiger offense into something truly special. After going undefeated in his one year with the program, he decided to head back to the NFL and take control of the Carolina Panther’s offense alongside new head coach Matt Rhule. With absolutely no talent on the offensive side of the ball with McCaffrey out, he has made them look like a half decent football team. He is being talked about as the hottest head coaching name in the NFL, but if the Gamecocks threw him enough money, would he take it? At only 31 years old, he seems like he enjoys challenges and there is no bigger challenge right now in college football than fixing this Gamecock football team. This is a very unlikely hire as he may be in Dallas in charge of America’s team but if for some reason he wanted another go in the SEC, I can guarantee Five Points would be packed out in Columbia, South Carolina.