National Championship Coaches Film Room: Top 10 Moments

Coaches on hand: Jim McElwain (Florida), Willie Taggart (USF), Larry Fedora (UNC), Pat Narduzzi (Pitt), Will Muschamp (South Carolina)

1. Jim McElwain has to one up Will Muschamp (Derrik)

ESPN did the world a favor by seating Will Muschamp, former Florida Gators head coach, and Jim McElwain, current Florida Gators head coach, across from each other at the table. Muschamp was as bitter as could be. McElwain was pompous and always giving his two cents. It was the perfect amount of tension that the film room broadcast needed to keep the conversation heated. Though, it was less of a real conversation of more like an older brother pumping himself up in front of his younger brother and his friends.

McElwain refused to look inferior to Muschamp. Granted, looking inferior to Muschamp would be difficult to concede, but McElwain wasn’t having it. Early on in the broadcast, McElwain cut-off and spoke over Muschamp multiple times. If Muschamp said something, McElwain made a concentrated effort to say something back. The two bickered the entire game, but ultimately, McElwain came out having said made many more enlightening points than Muschamp, who I’m positive said “50/50 balls” upwards of ten times throughout the broadcast. Uncle Mac came to assert his dominance over the bumbling idiot he stole the Florida job from, and damn it, he did it.

Prior to the broadcast, McElwain was eating smoked gator. The metaphor could not be more perfect. McE ate a dead, smoked gator just before he smoked a dead Gator on national television. He is the hero that college football needed. Too many people have been hurt by Muschamp, but McElwain made it a mission to embarrass him.

2. “What do you call that?” “Illegal.” (Nate)

McElwain digs himself deeper with every word here, stutters abound. The silence in the room as he tries to explain himself is immediately followed by the pouncing of multiple coaches, as they ruthlessly call him out on his dirty tactic. If your ultimate defense is “No, no, that’s totally legal”, wearing a giant smirk, you probably need to take the L, and fast.

This reminds me of a certain somebody trying to cover up the dirty deed he committed.

3. Bird/Rabbit (Derrik)

Jim McElwain is a national treasure. He is the uncle at family parties who just tells you how it is when the conversation gets overly complicated. That is exactly what he did here when host Chris Spielman said that, as a defender, code words were used to tell if the offense was running the ball or throwing it based on alignment. If the ball was going in the air, the defense called ‘bird.’ If the offense’s alignment showed run, the defense called ‘rabbit.’ It’s a fairly simple call out system, but not simple enough for Uncle Mac.

After a bit of discussion and back-and-forth from some other coaches about the call outs, McElwain leans back casually in his chair and says “In Montana, they call it ‘run’ or ‘pass’.” He wasn’t having this new age bullshit. Where McElwain comes from, electricity is a myth, kids can drive a tractor by the age of five and football players just say ‘run’ or ‘pass.’ It’s as simple as that. He’s a simple man with simple ways. He doesn’t need no fancy calls to win the big game.


USF Head Coach Willie Taggart says here that he would “ask his Defensive Coordinator to bring some pressure”. Coming from the guy whose defense gave up 45 points in their most recent bowl game to the Western Kentucky Hilltoppers, maybe we should take his opinion with a grain of salt.

The next play? Clemson puts 9, almost 10, guys in the box, yet still gives up the first down.

(Momentum is still real though, just not in the way Taggart tries to say it is)

5. Dan Quinn wears cleats  (Charles)

Yes, Dan Quinn wears cleats. And he runs stadium stairs before every game. And when he was with the Dolphins he gave himself a broken nose smashing his face into a players helmet. What’s it to you?  He’s fired up, jacked up, ready to be fast and physical at all costs.

6. Willie Taggart is a football Free Mason (Derrik)

With five head coaches in one room, there had to be one of them that would predict the deciding factor of the game. Of course, it was the quietest, most soft-spoken of all the coaches: USF’s Willie Taggart. Maybe that was their plan. The Masons, that is. Find a quiet head coach who has just enough command and national recognition to be heard, but not enough for things to get out of hand. Maybe he called in the onside kick during a break? Maybe he has a mole at Clemson that purposely threw the play? Maybe Willie Taggart knows something we don’t know.

7. Shutting down the host (Charles)

In a room of egotistical men trying to spew analysis whenever they get the chance, the host is going to get verbally stampeded  frequently. Larry Fedora and Will Muschamp were hogging all the airtime on that missed throw (drink) by Jake Coker. There’s no way that Jim McElwain was going to let the coach that preceded him and some inferior ACC coach get all the precious TV time. Sometimes people get hit with stray bullets, the host was the unfortunate victim in this scenario.

8. Will Muschamp spilled his coffee (Nate)

There’s just something funny about a 40 year old Griese calling 44 year old Muschamp “old school” after seeing Sweet N Low packets near Muschamp’s spilled coffee(probably the results of one of these reactions). I imagine Muschamp probably uses something harder than that, but you do you, Mr. Sweet N Low.

9. Shaaaaaaaade (Derrik)

For the second time in the game, Alabama’s quarterback Jake Coker had to call a timeout to avoid a ‘delay of game’ call. Instead of chastising Coker for his incompentence, one of the hosts says he “likes that from him.” WHY. One of the coaches table rightfully called him out on it. Coker wasted a timeout when he didn’t have to and the announcer commended him for it! Being coaches who have seen their own quarterbacks do the same, they were irked by the hosts awful comment. It’s shit like this that enabled people to think Coker might not be terrible, but the coaches were there to steer the people back on the right path.

10. Asking Larry Fedora about onside kicks involving Clemson (Charles)

For those who don’t know, North Carolina had a chance to beat Clemson in the ACC Championship game. They scored to cut Clemson’s lead to eight with just over a minute remaining. North Carolina kicked the onside (and recovered it), but they were called with an absolute horseshit offsides penalty. If North Carolina had won that game Clemson probably wouldn’t have been in the College Football Playoff. Of course, the other coaches in the room are going to give him a hard time about it.