War Eagle Extra

Will Muschamp responds to Jim McElwain's comments about Florida's roster

AUBURN, Ala. — On the day of Will Muschamp's introductory press conference at Auburn in December, he said there was one thing his successor at Florida, Jim McElwain, couldn't complain about: the talent on the roster.

"Don't let that new guy tell you he ain't got any players," Muschamp said. "I can tell you that right now. There are some good football players in that locker room."

McElwain begged to differ last week. While the Gators have talent returning, McElwain said the team was lacking on both the offensive line and at linebacker.

"You've got to play the hand you're dealt," McElwain told reporters. "And right now, quite honestly, the hand we were dealt is really insufficient at some of the areas."

He went on to say it was hard to make a two-deep for the offensive line.

"So these guys, we're giving them spells," McElwain said. "Just kind of the way we practice, we had to kind of totally change how we will normally practice here in the future."

Asked about McElwain's comments Thursday, Muschamp responded he hadn't heard them. But he pointed out that when he made his original claim in December, offensive linemen DJ Humphries and Tyler Moore hadn't declared for the NFL draft.

More than anything, Muschamp seemed to find McElwain's lament amusing. For evidence, he referenced McElwain's first press conference at Florida, when he spoke glowingly of himself.

"I believe I can win with my dog Claribelle," McElwain said at the time. "That's the attitude."

So why, Muschamp wondered, is there a problem now?

"He said he could coach a dog and win," Muschamp said. "Heck, (does) he like the dog better than his players?"