South Carolina coach Will Muschamp could have a significant decision to make later this year about his staff.
The NCAA Football Oversight Committee passed along a number of proposals that conference commissioners will vote on in April, one of which would add a 10th full-time assistant coach to staffs across the country.
How much time Muschamp actually has devoted to thinking about what he would do with that extra spot is not yet known, though there are a few different directions he could go.
Second DL coach
The formula has worked well at Clemson under Dabo Swinney, even though both coaches departed after their season ended. Defensive tackles coach Dan Brooks retired, and defensive ends coach Marion Hobby returned to the NFL.
Not to suggest South Carolina defensive line coach Lance Thompson needs the help, but it’s an avenue that might be worth considering. Thompson’s worn several different hats throughout his career, coaching defensive ends, linebackers and tight ends.
With that in mind, Thompson could focus on the ends, and another coach would handle tackles. Then again, that system is kind of in place with Mike Peterson. He coaches the “Buck” position, a hybrid defensive end/outside linebacker.
Another DB coach
Several teams at the college level have two defensive backs coaches, one who works with cornerbacks and the other safeties. That, again, is sort of already in place at South Carolina.
Along with his defensive coordinator duties, Travaris Robinson serves as the defensive backs coach. Defensive backs – safety, in particular – that’s Muschamp’s background, and he’s already involved with the secondary.
Other sides of the ball
Offensively, there aren’t really any options, beyond just adding a second coach to a position group for the sake of adding one.
There’s also the third phase of the game: special teams.
Linebackers coach Coleman Hutzler serves as the special teams coordinator. As was the case with Thompson and the defensive line, we’re not advocating help for Hutzler, but NFL teams have a coach whose sole job is to coordinate the special teams.
It wouldn’t be the worst idea to have a college football team with a full-time coach whose only on-field duties were special teams, right?
Off the field
The folks from footballscoop.com offered a suggestion last fall for all college football teams. It made an awful lot of sense:
“A 10th assistant focused primarily on recruiting would be especially crucial during the season, when the existing nine assistants are focused on game-planning, practice, film study and winning games on Saturdays. An extra assistant could spend more focused, quality time on the road during the season, and generally treat the fall recruiting period like the rest of the staff does the winter and spring.”
It is worth noting that Muschamp serves as the recruiting coordinator, and he showed during the fall that he wasn’t afraid to travel.
But you never can have too much help when it comes to recruiting.