After LSU game, Gators are good … but they’re not back yet

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Pat looks back at the LSU game, the great atmosphere at The Swamp and other SEC matchups.

Podcast breakdown:

01:25 There’s a different feeling when LSU comes to town
03:00 Florida has become a good football team, but it’s not back yet
09:00 Unbelievable environment. The Swamp deserves a lot of credit.
12:12 A season-changing game
22:06 Other SEC games from the weekend
30:20 Three Things

28 COMMENTS

  1. I liked the small portion of the podcast where you talked about dwindling crowds across the country for college football and the beauty of actually attending a college game. I’d like to see those angles expanded on — perhaps a great centerpiece old-school double truck.

    • NO one can reasonably deny that statement. This team , with a good QB would be in contention, without a doubt, for the playoffs; having said that, that’s not what we have and wishing it won’t make it so. This has been pointed out so many times by so many people, I think its time to just support the guy we have 100% and hope for the best. Cheer him on and point out his strengths, and let the negativity go(not saying you are being negative), because it isnt helping him or the team and Mullen has made his choice and its not going to change.

      • Excellent point — and it goes for not only our QB at present, but for the team as a whole too. Pat’s point seemed to be that while we’re good, we’re not “back” yet…..”back” presumably meaning where we were before this mess started. Who can deny that either, as much as we wish it to be so? We are what we are right now, and that’s a helluva lot better than we were just a year ago; we win games and we win them the way we have to right now, which ain’t always pretty or easy. But we win them, and it’s sure as hell not luck. I think we really do what you say, Daz….we cheer them on, avoid un-needed negativity, and watch this team grow into what we all want it to be. One-game-at-a-time, to include any future disappointments. Even those of us who are grumpy by nature.

        • 100% agree that the fans should trust that coaches are making the correct decisions on who should be playing and player rotation. They haven’t done anything to harm that trust. As far as for being “back”, Mullen has Florida playing up to their talent level. Major improvement over the past. The coaches are developing their players. I believe that a player’s recruiting star doesn’t mean anything on an individual level. However, on an aggregate level over time, the recruiting star stats show good correlation with wins. To make that next big step to compete with the elite programs on an annual basis, Florida is going to need to recruit more elite players. Fan support is critical to getting these players. Every recruit at the game mentioned the atmosphere and fan support. Keep it going Gator Nation!

  2. I always felt Mullen should have been hired when Meyer quit. He’s always had a great offensive mind and he loved and cared about the Gators the first time around. It’s awesome that he cared enough to want to return and build this program back to where it belongs.

    • I always felt the same, PHS, at the time and ever since…..but Billy Fink pointed out the other day that he might not have been ready at the time. Got me thinking, maybe that’s true, you never know what might have been or what might not have been. I’m just thankful we’ve got him now!

  3. To actually be inside the stadium when special moments happen, like Saturday vs. L.S.U. is ”what makes college football great.” And many of us have had our fair share: James Jones 1 handed catch, falling backwards onto the pylon to take out the nasty ‘U’, or Kerwin’s comeback against Top 5 Auburn, or a Florida fan favorite: Florida taking down the #1 ranked F.S.U. in ’97. Ultimately, I sincerely hope ”The Swamp” can be as electric as it was Saturday, more often, with Mullen at the helm. Go Gators!

    • Gatorgi70x7 – Right you are. The James Jones “catch” was my very first Gator game. And my seat was right on the goal line. That play happened right in front of me. Still amazing after all these years. Kerwin limping in for the 2 point conversion against Auburn is my single favorite moment from any Gators game (including all the thrilling championships). College football is about atmosphere and emotion. The very best NFL environment is great. But it is dwarfed by the best in college football.

      • James Jones’ catch, and Kerwin’s ”bad knee comeback” are still my favorites.
        I actually snuck into that Miami game (via the old North end zone, as the punk kid that I was in the late 70’s to early 80’s). I sat right there in that corner too, between the North end zone and East side, where Jones made the catch. Gator great memories! And I sincerely wish them for all the young Gator fans today. They’ll NEVER forget them! Much like you and I. But they ”have to be there” to make those memories.
        Go Gators!

        • gatorgi70x7 – The other thing I remember from that game was Miami’s All America kicker (nickname The Flea) missing a chip shot field goal in (brand new) South end. I remember thinking at that time how big a miss that was. Sure enough, the Gators end up winning a close game. I also remember how good Miami’s qb Jim Kelly was. But Wayne Peace out played him that day and wound up on the cover of SI that year.

          Just as fun, a week or so later was Wilbur Marshall terrorizing Sean Salsbury for an entire game. I bet if you sneak up behind Salsbury today and whisper “Kilbur” in his ear he either faints dead away, shits his pant or both.

  4. Succinct and correct, Pat. The Gators have surpassed last season’s win total. And they look like a good team (last year’s team looked like a hot mess beginning the first week). But they are not a great team. Greatness awaits. In the meantime, keep on keepin’ on. Coach ’em up, Dan.

  5. I rooted for Mullen’s return when Meyer left. At that time others pointed out Mullen had been abrasive and less than mature while here, although his offensive coaching was excellent. I now realize he wasn’t ready at that time and as MS head coach he has matured and grown in both personal communications and coaching skills. He sure is ready now!

  6. The truth is our perception of the team is as good as the last games. We started the season optimistic. We liked the first game and our QB’s improvement. We thought it was going to be a repeat of last year and were telling everyone to be patient after Kentucky. We didn’t realize then KY was pretty good. We won another game against an ok team .Then hear comes MSU and LSU and we are now good. We may be great, and we will know that soon. When you get to the point in your thinking when you should be patient and listen to what you said to yourself after the KY game, but find yourself eager after the LSU game–that is a good thing. We can go 5-6 or 10-2, who knows maybe even 11-1. I think 9-3 is more realistic. And I think that would make us a very good football team , especially when considering how good LSU and KY turned out to be this year. That should get us a top 15 ranking and a nice bowl game.

    • I enjoyed reading your comments, mkf. In the gradations of excellence department, I’ll be very happy if we rate out as “good” at the end of the year, especially in context of last year. “Very good” would be icing on that cake. I think we will be “excellent” when wins come easier, or at least don’t stop my freakin’ heart so many times during a game! BOTTOM LINE WAY DOWN LOW: It’s always great to be a Gator, but it sure is fun again now.