Chargers.com is chatting with every Bolts assistant coach this offseason. Up next? Robert Muschamp.
Robert, you're one of the newest coaches on staff. What's the first couple of months been like for you?
"It's been good, coming over from Georgia. I flew in on Super Bowl Sunday actually so that was unique but it's been good. I came in here kind of with just a sponge mindset just trying to learn whatever I can. Obviously it's my first time getting NFL experience and stuff, so excited about that. First few weeks here I went to the Combine, getting to experience that was definitely cool and seeing all of this for the first time has definitely been a good experience for me."
Was it always a goal of yours to coach in the NFL?
"Yeah, it was. Growing up all I kind of thought about was coaching in college and as I kind of got going throughout college, that definitely piqued my interest a little bit. Getting linked up with DA [Chargers Defensive Coordinator Derrick Ansley] at Tennesse, then he went to the Raiders and all that stuff, he ended up coming here and it was like, 'Hey, if an opportunity presents itself, I'd definitely want to be a part of that.'"
What are your job responsibilities?
"Really just playbook drawing, opponent breakdown, just kind of helping day to scripts of practice and stuff like that. Just kind of helping Giff [Smith] with the outside backers and kind of whatever DA needs, helping him and Coach Staley out with whatever it may be."
What's your relationship like with Ansley given the time at Tennessee and here? Was he a big part in you coming here?
"First job coming out of college was at Tennessee with Coach [Jeremy] Pruitt and Coach Ansley. He was a coordinator at the time and that definitely got me there for sure. Me and him built a really good relationship there and kind went our separate ways. I went to Georgia, he went to the Raiders and then came here, but definitely that's a huge reason why I came here. I was fortunate enough to meet Coach Staley, he was our speaker at our coaches clinic in 2021 when I was at Georgia, so I got to meet Coach Staley at that point, too. Him and DA, we had kind of talked about it, but definitely Coach Ansley has been a huge part of why I'm here for sure."
What have you learned the most from Ansley?
"Probably the most he's taught me just outside of football is just all the other things that comes with it, outside stuff. How to handle yourself in the office, how to handle yourself in the position room, meeting room, that kind of stuff. That's probably the biggest stuff for me is just kind of teaching me the game and stuff like that."
You obviously have a well-known last name in the football world. How do you try to stand out on your own?
"It's definitely unique being a football coach and having that last name for sure just because it's like, 'Oh, that's your dad, that's your uncle', whatever it is. It's just kind of part of it, I can't do a lot about it, it's just kind of how it is. It's been a blessing for sure because it definitely helps, but I'm still working hard and doing everything I can to be my own self."
Do you lean on your uncle (Will Muschamp) for coaching advice?
"Yeah definitely when I first got into it, definitely asked him a lot of questions, even now because he was in the NFL for a year or two. When I first got this job, that was definitely someone I leaned on and just asked questions and stuff like that. Definitely been helpful for me throughout my entire time and then working with him at Georgia for two years was definitely good. It's probably as close as we got in those two years, it definitely helped out a lot."
What was your experience like playing tight end at Auburn?
"It was good, I actually played tight end for three years and played linebacker for a year so I was able to kind of get both sides of the ball which is really good. Offense was a little bit different, but it was definitely good to get that experience on the defensive side of the ball, kind of knowing how, especially at tight end, what those guys are thinking and stuff like that. It's definitely helped me as far as coaching."
Did you go to Tennessee right away after Auburn?
"Yeah, right away. I graduated Auburn in May and I was in Knoxville in June. It was right away. It was interesting just because I never coached or anything like that. Funny story with DA, my first day at Tennessee he tells me to make a copy of a packet. So I go to the printer and I'm making copies of this packet, one by one. He walks in about five minutes later like, 'What are you doing?' I'm like, 'I'm making copies of this packet'. He's like, 'Put the whole packet in the printer'. So like stuff like that, it was definitely a unique transition but it was good. I really enjoyed it. It took some time to get used to from a player to a coach as far as just coaching and interacting with the guys. It's been good though."
Your last two years were with Georgia, where you obviously won two national titles. What did you learn about the standard that is set at Georgia?
"That's probably one of the biggest reasons why I was so successful the past two years, just because of what Coach [Kirby] Smart built there with the culture and the standard of how things are supposed to be game-in, game-out and day-in and day-out. That's something I'll take with me really my whole coaching career, just attention to detail. All the little things matter to him, doesn't matter what it is, and that's definitely a part of the reason we were so successful the past two years."
Was it tough for you playing at Auburn, then coaching at Tennessee and Georgia? Those SEC rivalries run deep, you know?
"Going to Auburn and then having to wear Georgia stuff was just one of the hardest things ever. I grew up in Georgia, too, I grew up always disliking Georgia. I grew up an Auburn fan and my whole family went to Auburn, I wanted to go to Auburn. Hated Georgia, but Georgia will always have a place in my heart because we won two championships there. It was good there."
How do you like being out here in SoCal then?
"Way different. It's a little bit more expensive for sure, but it's been good. It's a great area, it's been awesome to live here. I'm not married, no kids, so I'm just kind of wherever I could live near the facility and just kind of work. It's been good. Really like this area close to the beach. Been to Newport a few times, I've enjoyed living out here."
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