The Back Nine comes at you after a wild and crazy weekend that will never be forgotten despite the many damaged brain cells. Gainesville and the Gator Nation, I will forever be in your debt for the 25th Bob Dooley Invitational.
10. As we inch closer to the start of college football season and the annual clambake known as SEC Media Days, you have to kind of prepare for what is coming and in this case it means people are really going to like your team in the media. It will be easy to forget that Feleipe Franks was getting booed on his own field and to remember the way he played the last quarter of the season. Some media members, wanting to be different, will pick Florida to win the East over Georgia. Someone, somewhere in TV land, will pick Florida to be in the College Football Playoff. Trust me, it will happen. And that’s fine. You always want high expectations. You never want to go to the stadium expecting something dreadful to happen. It’s OK if you are spoiled. Doesn’t everyone want to be spoiled? So be ready for a couple of months of being appreciated, of being coddled, praised and valued. You might as well enjoy it. It’s been awhile. And that’s a shame.
11. Here’s one thing you won’t hear or see while sweating out the summer and that is my fake theory that Dan Mullen was brought to UF to beat Miami. It’s a fake theory because I know it’s not true … or is it? Please, don’t @me, I’m kidding. But it is amazing that Urban Meyer, with Mullen as his right-hand man, is the only Florida coach to beat the Hurricanes since Galen Hall. Of course, there have only been eight games since that 1985 Florida win, but Hall lost his next two, Steve Spurrier missed on his only shot at the ’Canes, Ron Zook was 0-2, Charlie Strong 0-1 and Will Muschamp 0-1. All of this has nothing to do with anything that happens on Aug. 24 in Orlando, but it’s why you’ve heard a lot of crowing from Miami fans on social media.
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12. So I received my ballot from the Florida-Georgia Hall of Fame last week and I’m going to let you help me out. We are supposed to put the 10 candidates in order. Here they are:
Mike Peterson, Brad Culpepper, Emmitt Smith, Lomas Brown, Brandon Spikes, Dallas Baker, Andre Caldwell, Keiwan Ratliff, Jacquez Green, Earnest Graham.
All of them are great Gators, but very little stands out when it comes to the Florida-Georgia game. (Although the Spikes hit on Knowshon Moreno in 2008 may shoot him to the top of the ballot). For example, the great Emmitt Smith never beat Georgia. So does he deserve to be in the Hall? Personally, I don’t think he belongs in the Ring of Honor at Florida, but that’s another discussion. I know I’m getting old and all of those 1990s FlaGa games run together so let me know your top three from this group.
13. The rumbling continues about the possibility of that game moving out of Jax at some point and I think it goes to show you the length that athletic directors will go to when trying to put together a home schedule that will appeal to leaking attendance numbers. It’s not the reason that game may go to each campus, but it’s part of the overall picture. You have to love talking season.
14. If you were filling out a ballot to name the greatest athletes to ever be at the University of Florida and Grant Holloway wasn’t on that list, well, you would be showing a lack of awareness. The way he finished off his record-breaking career at the NCAAs with a collegiate record and a win over his rival — who had just beaten him in the SECs — was amazing. He’d be in my top five. What a career. Check out Scott Carter’s story on the final day at floridagators.com.
15. I have to admit with the Gators going three and see-ya at the baseball regional and with the tournament this weekend I have had a hard time keeping up with the NCAA Tournament. But I did catch some of FSU’s two wins over LSU, and while it sure felt like both Georgia and LSU gagged as higher seeds against the Seminoles, all of you Gators need to stifle your FSU hatred and be happy Mike Martin made it back, especially because he made it back with a team that couldn’t beat Florida in three tries and wouldn’t have made the tournament at all if it wasn’t for the sentimentality factor. Those young men are playing inspired baseball and I’m happy for a guy who always treated the media with respect. I also know that the one seed is out again and the Pac-12 is having a rough year in the Big Three of sports. Other than that, I was busy.
16. At about 7:30 a.m. Saturday, the weather app on my phone told me that the chance of rain at Ironwood Golf Course at the 9 a.m. tee time for the 25th Bob Dooley Invitational was 100 percent. But while I tried to figure out what we were going to do something wonderful happened. It’s almost impossible to explain how a storm would stop, make a right turn and miss us completely. That’s one magic weather system. I’ve lived in Florida my whole life and I’ve never seen anything like it. I don’t think it is possible to run a perfect tournament, but we came damn close Saturday. Thanks to Jeff Cardozo and Eric Thomas and all of the wonderful ladies out there as well as our amazing sponsors and volunteers. People ask me how much we have raised every year for Stop Children’s Cancer. It’s not only the Dooley family who raises it. It’s the people who donate, who kick in their entry fees and buy silent auction events, who spend five hours sitting on a hole giving out food and drinks. Those are the people who really raise the money. And, together, we broke a record this year. It may or may not be the last, but if it was, we went out with a bang.
17. The Tweet of the Week comes from former Tour golfer Bill Mallon, who made me smile with this one — “Baby crying at Roland Garros. Famous story about Arnold Palmer. Baby crying while he was trying to play at a tournament. The mother put her hand over his mouth. Palmer walked over and said, ‘Maam, this isn’t that important. Let him breathe. I can play.’ That was Arnold Palmer.” Yes, it was.
18. Literally, it’s time to get back to my normal life after Kelsey’s graduation one weekend and The Bob the next. It starts at the gym and with this playlist:
• “It Doesn’t Matter Why” by Silversin Pickups.
• “Shockwave” by Liam Gallagher.
• “This Life” by Vampire Weekend.
• “3 Nights” by Dominic Fike.
• And for an old one, there was some karaoke on Friday night at Ironwood and my ears may never be the same and I was supposed to play a song with the Bob Dooley House band Moondog but never got around to it. This is the song I was going to sing and play in the key of Ringo — “Don’t Pass Me By” by the Beatles.
Contact Pat Dooley at 352-374-5053 or at firstname.lastname@example.org. And follow at Twitter.com/Pat_Dooley.