When Will Muschamp joined the Georgia football program in January, he was seen as a big-time addition. He’d help other coaches coach while helping out on the recruiting trail after coming over from South Carolina.
Muschamp’s role with the Georgia program might quickly change, as Jake Rowe from 247Sports reports that Muschamp will be elevated into an on-field coaching role as special teams coordinator Scott Cochran has stepped away from the program.
The news of Cochran not being with the Georgia football team first surfaced on Sunday afternoon, as the second-year coach is not with the team. NCAA rules allow for 10 on-field coaches and with Cochran stepping away, Muschamp would slide in as the 10th coach for the time being.
Georgia coach Kirby Smart confirmed the news on Cochran, as he released an official statement.
“Coach Cochran is currently dealing with health issues and is taking time to prioritize his mental health and well-being,” Smart said. “We fully support him as he takes this time to focus on his well-being.”
Muschamp and Kirby Smart have long had a relationship, as they were teammates at Georgia and assistants together at Valdosta State and LSU. Like Smart, Muschamp’s specialty is in the defensive backfield, though his time as a head coach at both Florida and South Carolina allows him to help out in other areas on the field.
Georgia also has tight ends coach Todd Hartley who could potentially help out on special teams, as he served in that role when he worked at Miami.
The Bulldogs should have one of the best special teams units in the country, thanks to punter Jake Camarda, kicker Jack Podlesny and Kearis Jackson and Kenny McIntosh working as return men. Camarda was a Ray Guy finalist last season in addition to being SEC Special Teams Player of the Year. Podlesny played a huge part in Georgia’s win over Cincinnati to end the season as he converted on a 53-yard field goal to win Georgia the game.
Cochran came to Georgia after serving as the strength and conditioning coach at Alabama from 2007 through 2019. Cochran’s time at Alabama overlapped with Smart, who served as the defensive coordinator under Nick Saban from 2008 through 2015.
Georgia began fall practice on Friday as it continues to prepare for the 2021 season. Muschamp is very familiar with GEorgia’s opening week foe, as the Bulldogs will play the Clemson Tigers. Muschamp’s South Carolina team played Clemson annually as a part of the in-state rivalry, though he went 0-4 against Dabo Swinney.
More Georgia football stories from around DawgNation
- Georgia’s fearsome defensive front, through the lens of a Clemson offensive lineman
- JT Daniels brings improved confidence, ‘California swag’ into second season at Georgia
- Kirby Smart, Mark Richt share thoughts after the passing of college football legend Bobby Bowden
- Kirby Smart uses ketchup to explain his transfer portal thoughts
- Georgia eyes up explosive Clemson offense recently bolstered by Justyn Ross’ return
- Arik Gilbert ‘as advertised’ per Georgia teammate Lewis Cine
- Georgia captain Nakobe Dean: Bulldogs prioritize ‘connection,’ accountability to team
- Georgia QB JT Daniels reveals UGA sports psychologist helped him overcome adversity