In a press conference held Monday, the University of South Carolina’s Chess Association announced its new head coach, William Muschamp. UofSC students may remember Muschamp as the former head football coach. While highly acclaimed for his record of 22 wins in his first three seasons, he was later bought out of his contract following what some have called “a season worse than the end of Game of Thrones.”
Having been hailed in the past for his brilliant defensive mind, Muschamp assured reporters, “Yeah, I was always too intellectual for football anyway. And if you think about it, they’re pretty close. The pieces are like the players, and checkmate is like a touchdown. I could go on and on, but the analogy basically writes itself.”
On what convinced him to return to UofSC, Muschamp explained, “Most guys in my position would just kick back and retire, but not me. I knew that I could do more for the student athletes here. After getting denied when I applied to coach basketball, wrestling, soccer, lacrosse, swimming, fencing, bowling, and water polo, the UofSC athletic director finally gave me this position. These boys may be puny little geeks now, but when I’m done here they’ll be opening with the Blackmar–Diemer Gambit on their right hand and curling 100 pounds with their left.”
Since arriving back on campus, Muschamp has introduced some sweeping changes to the club, which has not seen a win since 2016’s Blossom Street Regionals. The pieces are all cast-iron, and all chess clocks have been trashed. Turn time now corresponds directly to how long a player can do pushups.
Michael Denton, UofSC’s top chess player, said he was “skeptical at the choice.” “We’ve seen this happen before. Our last two coaches were burned-out sports managers as well. Coach O’Malley made us run laps every time we lost material, and Coach Quinton would yell ‘Keep your eyes on the board’ repeatedly until the game was over. I’m just not sure we can gather enough funds to afford another buyout.”