On November 15th, the University of South Carolina decided to part ways with former head coach Will Muschamp. Muschamp spent 5 seasons with the Gamecocks finishing with a 28-30 record over the course of those 5 years, only being ranked in the top 25 once. South Carolina has not found much success ever since the departure of legendary head coach Steve Spurrier back in 2015. Here are what I believe to be the top candidates for the head coaching job at South Carolina.
Hugh Freeze has been mentioned a lot when it comes to South Carolina’s head coaching job. The reasoning for this is because he has already done great things in the SEC conference. He previously was the head coach at Ole Miss, leading the Rebels to a 10-3 record with a Sugar Bowl win while his offense ranked 10th in total offense in 2015. Hugh Freeze utilized the RPO system way before it was the new offensive system, and he is making Liberty starting quarterback Malik Willis look like a Heisman candidate. Similarly, many wonder if he can do the same with SC’s Collin Hill.
When talking about coaching resumes, Steve Sarkisian has the most impressive resume on this list. He has coached under greats like Pete Carroll and Nick Saban and even had head coaching stints in the PAC 12 conference, coaching at the University of Washington for 5 years and the USC Trojans for 2 years.
He also has coaching experience in the NFL with the Oakland Raiders and Atlanta Falcons. Sarkisian’s offensive style utilizes all weapons on the field, beginning with the running back and his wide receivers. Sarkisian loves to run the ball, and when you run the ball that then opens up play action down the field. Sarkisian has had a 1,000-yard rusher in all but one year in his coaching career. Considering SC has a very talented backfield duo in Kevin Harris and MarShawn Lloyd, this could be a major selling point. It would be very exciting to see Steve Sarkisian at the helm in Columbia.
Jamey Chadwell knows the Palmetto state all too well, coaching here since 2013 leading Charleston Southern, and now Coastal Carolina. It has been nothing but up with Chadwell and the Chanticleers, from going 3-9 in 2017 to being one of the best teams in the Sun Belt throughout 2020. Jamey Chadwell runs a spread concept with many option plays included, rarely turning the ball over. What he has done with Grayson McCall at quarterback and the Chanticleers is truly incredible. He may very well be the front runner for the next Gamecock head coach at the end of the year.
South Carolina has lost their identity ever since Steve Spurrier resigned as head coach. His “Fun n’ Gun” offense has not been reborn into this team, which is something that needs a change. The real question is: who is the right man for the job? Only time will tell.