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The Curse Of Will Muschamp

Why can’t the Vols beat this guy???

Tennessee v South Carolina
Will Muschamp has been the ultimate thorn in the side of Vols fans over the past several years.
Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

There are a lot of things that just don’t click in life.

Spaghetti and ranch dressing. Beer and toothpaste. Bologna and turnip greens.

I mean, I could go on.

But the one non-clicky thing that bugs me in life is the non-clicky relationship with Will Muschamp and the Tennessee Volunteers.

They. Just. Don’t. Work.

Ever since Muschamp took over as Florida’s head coach in 2011, the Vols have lost every single game they’ve played when he’s the head honcho on the opposing sideline.

That’s seven games. Seven straight games. If Tennessee loses this year, that’s eight games in nine seasons.

That’s right. The Vols are bordering on losing to Muschamp for almost a decade straight.

Who is this f%$^@#! guy?! Where did he come from and why can’t Tennessee beat him?

Instead of dwelling on questions I can’t find answers to, I decided to reflect on the past seven games via the good ol’ box scores.

All I can say is this: misery loves company, right?

Well, I’m sure I’ll have plenty of company after you all are done reading this.

So, I went back and tallied up the major stats from the past seven meetings and boy, let me tell ya, it was pretty eye-opening.

Tennessee’s average stat line against Will Muschamp (2011-2014 Florida, 2016-current South Carolina)

  • The Vols have ran the ball 211 times for 568 yards and three touchdowns over the last seven meetings against Muschamp-coached squads. That comes out to 30 carries for 81 yards and an average of 2.69 yards per carry per game.
  • Tennessee’s air attack hasn’t been very good, either. Quarterbacks have completed 138/250 attempts (55%) for 1,342 yards with 8TDs and 12INTs since 2011. They’ve been sacked a total of 22 times. The yardage comes out to around 192 yards per game.
  • The offense averages around 282 total yards per game.
  • There have been 16 total turnovers over the last seven games. The current margin sits at (-8) for Tennessee
  • Players are flagged seven times for about 60 yards on average.
  • The offense has averaged around 4.26 yards per play.

Will Muschamp’s average stat line against Tennessee (2011-2014 Florida, 2016-current South Carolina)

  • Muschamp has made sure his teams run the ball against Tennessee. He’s relied on his running backs to the tune of 315 carries for 1,417 yards and 11 touchdowns. That comes out to an average of 45 carries for 202 yards and 4.5 yards per carry per game.
  • His teams haven’t had to pass much, but when they have, they’ve been effective. Quarterbacks have completed 93/146 attempts (64%) for 1,123 yards with 8TDs and 5INTs. They’ve been sacked a total of 12 times. The yardage comes out to around 160 yards per game.
  • Muschamp’s offenses dwarf Tennessee’s offenses in terms of total yardage. They’ve averaged around 363 yards per game.
  • You already know the turnover margin is (-8) for Tennessee. Florida and South Carolina have turned the ball over a combined eight times when facing the Vols under Muschamp.
  • Players are flagged about eight times for about 67 yards on average.
  • Offenses have averaged about 5.6 yards per play under Muschamp.

A somewhat-deeper dive into more context

  • The Vols have surpassed Muschamp’s offenses just once in terms of total yardage (2014 vs. Florida).
  • Florida and South Carolina’s offenses have eclipsed 300 total yards six out of seven times. Tennessee, on the other hand, has eclipsed 300 total yards just twice (2012 Florida & 2018 South Carolina).
  • Points have been hard to come by for Tennessee. The Vols have scored more than 20 points three times while the Muschamps have done it five times.
  • The turnover margin has been in the Vols’ favor two out of seven times.
  • Despite throwing for nearly 100 less attempts, Muschamp QBs have the same amount of touchdown passes (8) as Tennessee QBs (8).
  • When it comes to rushing the quarterback, Muschamp defenses have recorded two or more sacks five out of seven times. The Vols have recorded two or more sacks just twice and have two games with zero sacks. Muschamp’s defenses have recorded at least one sack in every game.

Please, Tennessee, end this misery on Saturday.

They always say the eighth time is the charm, right?