Dooley: Disappointing way to start Florida’s season

Florida linebacker Kylan Johnson looks upfield as Michigan offensive lineman Juwann Bushell-Beatty (76), Camaron Cheeseman and fullback Henry Poggi (19) celebrate with kicker Quinn Nordin (3) after Nordin made a long field goal in the second half Saturday in Arlington, Texas. [Tony Gutierrez/Associated Press]

ARLINGTON, Texas — As he walked off the fake-grass field of the massive stadium, Doug Nussmeier stared up at one of the video screens where the statistics of the game just finished were being flashed.

With his jaw jutting, the Florida offensive coordinator looked as if he was trying to will a few more yards onto the Florida side as he stared it down.

Anything to get the Gators over 200 yards.

Alas, nothing — not even some late garbage time yards — could leave Florida fans with anything positive to say about their offense after a 192-yard performance that had a little bit of everything rancid.

Like a redshirt freshman quarterback playing like one, twice stumbling to the ground after he pulled away from center and fumbling himself right out of the game.

Or the much-heralded Malik Zaire coming in and doing nothing.

Or the wide receivers not able to separate from defenders all day.

But mostly, what we saw was an offensive line that had spent the summer getting blown kisses from its head coach show us that it’s still ready to fold like a lawn chair when things get tough.

Things got tough Saturday. Florida’s big guys up front did not.

“I thought we had a good plan,” coach Jim McElwain said, “but as it turned out, the plan was pretty well foiled by getting whupped by big, strong guys. And that was disappointing.”

You think you’re disappointed?

Wait until you hear how loud the Gator Nation is this week.

They tried to believe, these fans who have endured seven years of bad offenses and now appear destined to dwell in the pit of offensive despair for another year.

Yeah, I know. You can’t give up on an offense after one game.

Watch me.

We thought this was going to be different and instead it was more of the same. Another physical opponent, another trip behind the woodshed.

You are left with no reason for optimism, nothing to really hang your hat on except empty promises.

“You could tell they wanted it more,” said receiver Josh Hammond.

Why? Was this team so mentally diminished after the events of the last few weeks that it forgot to go to the weight room? Did the offensive players lose their playbooks?

Look, we joked about Overreaction Sunday and how a poor performance by the offense was going to drive Gator fans to the brink. And it’s only one game.

But it’s hard to feel anything other than this — Florida looks like it has looked the last two years.

Without a defense to save it.

Because while the defense was Florida’s best offense, that defense was also shredded for more than 400 yards. When Michigan got a late touchdown it was almost a good thing because, seriously, 26 points might have been the fewest points a team could possible get against the Florida defense Saturday.

It was as if the Michigan defenders were on the Florida headsets. But mostly what they did was crowd the line of scrimmage, blitzing the quarterbacks and stuffing the running backs before they could get past the line of scrimmage.

After the game, McElwain didn’t seem to have a lot of answers.

They need to make sure they are doing the right things in the weight room? It’s a little late. They need to clean up the “get-it-to list and let those guys make some plays?”

What was wrong with doing that Saturday?

Players told the media boys and girls after the game that there would be no finger-pointing. That’s fine. I’ve got plenty.

You … have a mess at quarterback. I’m not sure there is an answer.

You … have some really soft guys who better get tougher in a hurry.

You … have had 28 games of football at Florida and the East titles are nice and all but this has to get better really soon or this team is going to have to battle for bowl eligibility.

I know, you fans want me to go further. But I am willing to wait and see if this is a fixable problem or a mess that is only going to get stinkier.

“It’s disappointing,” McElwain said for the fourth time in 12 minutes.

Well, trust me. I get that you feel that way.

You have plenty of company.

Contact Pat Dooley at 352-374-5053 or at And follow at



  1. Mac makes $4.3 million a year…and this what we get? 10 suspensions and 3 points on offense? There is no leadership in the locker room or from the coaching staff. UF is in the news for all the wrong reasons. Time to go in a different direction. Mac is in over his head. Just because you were a coordinator for Saban doesn’t make you head coaching material at a major SEC program. This isn’t Colorado State and this “Isn’t Cool.” All signs point that this program is headed in the wrong direction. Time for new leadership. This team has none!

    • I can’t say lets get rid of a coach who has taken us to two division titles, but I do concur with Frank Frangie who said – “But I can tell you this – the Gators never will return to being an elite program with this type of play-calling. Never. It is slow, clunky, unorganized; it lacks excitement and creativity. It is frighteningly predictable.” This is oh SO TRUE! Where are the tight ends and uses of them in the offense? If our offensive speed is back where are the wideout sweeps (one in the first series never to be seen again), real screen passes to the backs in addition to the ones to the receivers, and as FF mentioned in his column, where is the up tempo offense. Michigan went up tempo in the second half, with a more diverse offense (as mentioned by FF – five straight passes, which FL never does) and they took the lead. Wake up Jim and Doug and really go with a up tempo and more diverse offense – you might get more than 200 yards a game. Can we get the Ole Ball Coach to come out ot retirement and be the offensive coordinator?

      • Oh please, stop with the ole ball coach nonsense. I wouldn’t trust Steve Spurrier to run anything but his mouth. People forget how he left south Carolina mid season. Steve Spurrier had his time, more than enough time. I’d rather tolerate an arrogant Les Miles before I see Steve Spurrier has a had coach again; at least Les didn’t bail on his team.

        It’s time that Jim Mcelwain evaluate this offense (i.e Doug Nussmeier). It’s time for him to he, or Jim risk being replaced. The offense is not getting better under the current oc and it showed. This coach also needs to work his post game press conference because his players did a much better job and weren’t deflated as he was. Speaking of players, it’s time that they cut players that continue to have of the field issues. Its not as if were missing anything since they’re always suspended. I’d also start benching these oline players that continue to play lazy. No ones positron should ever be safe on a team that struggles to produce.

      • Oh please, stop with the ole ball coach nonsense. I wouldn’t trust Steve Spurrier to run anything but his mouth. People forget how he left south Carolina mid season. Steve Spurrier had his time, more than enough time. I’d rather tolerate an arrogant Les Miles before I see Steve Spurrier as the had coach again; at least Les didn’t bail on his team.

        It’s time that Jim Mcelwain evaluate this offense (i.e Doug Nussmeier). It’s time for him to take over the offense, or Jim risk being replaced. The offense is not getting better under the current oc and it showed. This coach also needs to work on his post game press conference because his players did a much better job and weren’t deflated as he was. Speaking of players, it’s time that they cut players that continue to have off the field issues. Its not as if we’re missing anything since they’re always suspended. I’d also start benching these oline players that continue to play lazy. No ones positon should ever be safe on a team that struggles to produce.

    • Mac needs to stay for now. But Nussmeier needs to go…..NOW. He is a horrible OC. If McElwain does not see that, he is blind and will eventually be fired as a result. Fire Nussmeir now and offer the OC job to the former offensive coach at Florida under Meyer who is now an offensive consultant at Alabama. If now him, someone who can call offensive plays with any semblance or order and imagination that makes sense for a team playing in the Power 5 conferences and in the SEC. This is now a high school program and should not be running a high school offense (and that is likely giving this offense too much praise).

      • Sent Strickland an email yesterday strongly suggesting it’s time to end the Bromance nussmeier and Mac have had of working together several times.. Oh, and Stop payment on his damn pay check as well! I don’t think s mere kinder are babysitter should get spayed That Much!!!

    • Coach Mac sucks. The fact that we got to two bowl games had nothing to do with him. His offense sucks. It was the Defense that held the team together. They were not his players. Now that they are all gone whats left is young and not good enough to stop anyone. The Defense will get shredded every game they play and the offense will struggle to score. The OL is pathetic. The QB’s have no clue. The WR can’t get separation and can’t get open. The RB’s can’t do anything because the OL can’t block or open holes. The coaching staff has no ability and imagination of a slug and that’s how the team played. It will be a long, long season. I am sorry, but coach Mac has to go. He is in way over his head. He will never produce a dominate, winning team.

  2. OL is pitiful; how much are they paying Nussmeier? Blue uniforms and white hats looked horrible; McElwain will take the first job offer that comes his way next winter, the heat from the fan base will be to much for him to handle. FSU will destroy this team in November. Did anyone see anything in this Gator team that makes you feel optimistic? A decade of mediocrity continues.

  3. Inept, Incompetent, and Incapable is the award given to the “offense.” Look, it’s nothing new. Whatever offensive cloud is hanging over Florida is really inexcusable. There are play makers on this offense, without Callaway or Scarlett. This football program has lost any semblance of being tough and nasty. McElwain has had 3 years to put his players into position, and all we have is an Alabama walk on reject that didn’t play, a Notre Dame transfer that’s just happy to be on a football team that’s not high school level, and Franks, who’s…..just not ready….along with an offensive line that cannot get out of their own way. The time to ask the hard questions of this coaching staff is now. Unfortunately, asking those questions will get you banned from press conferences. A good question to start with is “Coach, when can Florida expect to have an offensive line that is SEC caliber?” Second, “Coach, when can Florida expect to have a quarterback that is SEC caliber?” Third, “Coach, do you truly believe, based on the body of work you’ve demonstrated to this point, keeping in mind that the SEC Eastern Division is one of the weakest in the NCAA, that this coaching staff is qualified to coach and compete in the SEC?” Ask those hard questions. You won’t like the answers. As Chucky Mullins so infamously said, “It’s time.” It’s time for Florida to cut it’s losses, unfortunately go deeper in debt, but ultimately invest in a new coaching staff, and new direction for the football program at Florida. It’s time.

  4. There’s maybe 10 players on this team that deserve to wear the uniform. I would cancel the season, find a coach who has even a small clue, and start from scratch in 2018. There was a couple of years the university didn’t field a team due to WWII. Gator fans survived that. I’d rather watch paint try, than to watch this poor excuse of a football team. No heart, no pride, and no drive to succeed. The great thing about being a Gator is all the other teams on campus bring us great pride and entertainment!!! I didn’t expect us to win, but I DID expect us to show up and represent our school.

  5. “I thought we had a good plan,” coach Jim McElwain said, “but as it turned out, the plan was pretty well foiled by getting whupped by big, strong guys. And that was disappointing.”

    Never mind the past two seasons (stumbling into good fortune – which Muschamp also did)…

  6. Pitiful, just pitiful. This is groundhogs day for the past 6 years except there is a glaring difference, we can’t be saved by our D this year. I drank the kool aid that Mac and Nuss were offensive gurus. I believe now know it was cyanide…

  7. I just can’t figure out what our identity on offense is? I think Nuss was a bad hire from the start, really wanted him gone after last year but will admit, I liked the game plan against Bama last year. There was ZERO creativity today and honestly most of the time. How in the world does this guy still have a job???? With 8 months to prepare, this is what we get? Our offense is actually getting worse and the excuse of having to deal with they hand your dealt is over. If Nuss isn’t fired out demoted this week, Mac needs to go because he can’t be trusted to run this program. Say want you want about Muschamp, our defense got better under him because that was his thing. Under Nuss and Mac, our offense is getting worse and they almost have to try and get worse because it was already close to the bottom. I think the D will be fine if they don’t have to spend the majority of the game on the field but I do think they need to be more aggressive, can’t just rush 4 the majority of the time, especially when they’re gassed from being on the field. The offense is pathetic and we need and deserve a change.

  8. First there is the embarrassment of the character and discipline issues with repeated violations and mass suspensions. If that was not enough, the team is equally embarrassing on the field. The offensive line is as soft as McElwain’s flabby belly. These guys have not learned or progressed one bit in three years and clearly have not figured out the location of the weight room. They have to be one of the worst O lines in all of college football. It makes no difference who the quarterback running back is if they are constantly trying to avoid being steamrolled every play. Another game, another putrid, pathetic offensive performance. Has there ever been an offensive coordinator whose offenses have been this consistently bad for this length of time and was still able to keep his job?

    • Go back and count how many times Michigan stacked the line and blitzed. When you line up against eight rushers repeatedly it’s pretty hard to block everybody. Poor play selection failing to respond to what the defense is doing makes it pretty close to impossible to stop. Just saying maybe there is a bigger picture including being in the wrong play for what the defense is repeatedly showing.

      • Thank you. Bad play calling makes good players look terrible, and vice versa. People act like these kids have no heart and haven’t been busting their tails all offseason. Place the blame on the men, where it belongs. Coaches are supposed to set players up to be successful and we haven’t seen that on offense in a long time.

  9. Bravo! Thank you for saying it. I’m so tired of bad offenses. Did you know that nobody has ever spent 7 years in a 100+ offense, except Florida? Not even the bottom feeders in the NCAA. In fact, usually after ONE year the bottom teams improve and move up. Except Florida. There are no more excuses. Time to move on.

  10. Everybody is blaming the offensive line but teams stack the line on us and blitz over and over and Nussmeier fails to respond with the right calls like slants or play action or anything creative to take advantage of what the defense is doing. His play calling is so predictable it’s like the other team knows what’s coming. They just overwhelm the O line and that is not the linemen’s fault. The coaches say they decided to start a freshman qb because he has a strong arm. Then why don’t they call quick-developing plays? Surely a qb with a strong arm could get the ball off fast to complete slants with so much open space when the other team is blitzing repeatedly. Where was the short passing game or play action? Come on Coach Mac. Why don’t you take over calling plays? This is embarrassing. Your line is taking the heat when it looks like uncreative play calling is a bigger issue. You came here to fix the offense. Maybe you need to be more involved in the playbook and play selection. Your team deserves better.

  11. We have fallen so hard and so far down the list “major college programs” that I am seriously beginning to believe that we may never recover. If this fiasco goes on much longer I’m almost certain that we wont.

    • And yet the solution is so simple ! Except it isn’t for the worthless bureaucrats who run or athletic department ,(foley) we need a AD that’ll go Sign a chip Kelly I wish I could. B named AD id go do it for free

  12. Ok. I was willing to give our supposed offensive genius this year because our o-line was a powerhouse. Yeah a powerhouse that opened up all of 11 yards…11 yards. The best play we had was Franks first pass and then we promptly went backward. Listen, I have been a loyal Orange and Blue Gator for fifty three years and I know we were spoiled by SOS and Urban, but eight years is beyond the pale. I will always as long as live bleed Orange and Blue, but I have no idea to replace him….Mac has gotta. P.S. One bright light, we still have the best kickers in the country.

  13. Have to agree with the coaching assessment. It feels that Nussmeier is Mac’s ride or die OC, and it’s just not working. With Muschamp, he went through 3 OCs, and didn’t get the offensive players that was going to be needed…primarily in the OL area, so the offense struggled. I think that it’s not so much the play calling that’s the problem, it’s that it doesn’t seem as if the team can adjust to what is being presented to them. It’s great to have a game plan, everyone does, but when it doesn’t work, that’s when you have to change what you’re doing. Sadly, SOS had the same problem until Nebraska thoroughly whooped his offense into submission in the Fiesta Bowl. He refused to change his ways until it was just too painfully obvious that defenses had caught up to him and when he did, he won a NC. As much as people loved Urban here, it was always Dan Mullen that made the offense work….he adjusted the team to fit Chris Leak and then to fit Tebow, and when he left, the offense left with him; and as much as I hate to say it, that’s exactly the way Lane Kiffin was a Bama. He made the offense work for the personnel that he had, and was always willing to change to work against what the opposing defense was giving him. I’m no football coach, nor am I any sort of expert, but I do believe that in order to win, you have to be able to change, and your players have to be able to do it as well. I still have faith that they can turn it around, and it’s probably better that every weakness was exposed before we hit the SEC schedule in two weeks. A thumping of a cupcake wouldn’t have shown anything except that we can beat a smaller FBS or FCS team, like everyone of the top 10, minus FSU and Bama, did. I think Franks is the guy…liked his deep ball accuracy and maneuverability. Just has to get those first game jitters out…unfortunately for him, it was against a top 10 defense….then again, now maybe everything else is slower. Let’s just hope for some good game film watching and some self-reflection. Gator fans have seen this sort of let down many times over…even with some of the best teams that have come through here. Gripe and complain and second guess everything the coaches do….that’s what coaching in big boy college football is about, but don’t jump off the ledge yet.

    • Corey. You stated that the play calling was so much the problem and then outlined all the facts why the play calling is the problem. Nussmeier simply does not have the innate skills to make adjustments to what a defense is doing on the field, and he clearly has difficulty putting a plan together that effectively attacks a defense from play one. And if he does do that play one, he almost immediately returns to an unorganized way of calling plays that is almost always predictable, highly unproductive, and always predictable. Clearly, teams have figured out the Florida offensive scheme by playing 7, 8 , and 9 in the box and taking away what Florida wants to do and Nussmeier clearly has no clue how to counter what other coaches are doing. And OCs are hired to make adjustments to game plans, and even to offenses when needed. Nussmeier is doing none of that. Either McElwain fires Nussmeier and hires someone off the street to call plays, or calls the plays himself, or Mac will likely find himself on the street looking for another head coaching job along with Nussmeier in the near future. Gator Nation and the Florida administration is not going to tolerate this team not having an offense, knowing McElwain was brought in here to fix the offensive problems Florida was having even before he arrived. Time for change. Or it will be time for a big change soon enough.

  14. Why did we, as Gators fans, allow ourselves to be fooled into thinking this offense would be any different than it has been from the last 2 years? Why, when you have an OC that has failed everywhere he went. Alabama; failed despite having a team full of 5 star players and fired after one year (which shows why Saban is truly a great coach. He doesn’t tolerate garbage for long). Michigan; 115th in total offense in his one year as OC…sound familiar? I’m not ready to fire Mac but Nussmier needs to be gone as soon as possible. I don’t care that it is the beginning of the season. Mac can take over the offensive responsibilities until they hire a new OC at the end of the year. Nussmier is not going to get us anywhere! Cut the dead weight now before you sink further under the water.

  15. Pat I’m sorry!!! You have been right all alone with you negative slanted comments! Just like Ali’s first round against Foreman, they came out and hit us in the mouth and didn’t stop and we were helpless to respond. This is a BIG program failure like Zook. We now have to give Mac the rest of this season, but no more. Immediate turn around or find someone who can do the job, no matter the $$$…yes like Bama did.

  16. I have been a lifelong Gator fan since first witnessing the UF – Houston game at Florida Field in (I believe) 1968. I am very disappointed and yes, angry at the 10 UF players whose foolish, selfish behavior caused them to be suspended. Their absence was very noticeable. It is a good thing I am not the HC, because if I was, I would boot Calloway off the team altogether. I believe he is a bad influence for the rest of the team, and is not at all a team player (it’s all about Calloway – not the Gators). When cancer is diagnosed, you cut it out. The rule should be “3 strikes and you are out”. It is time for the Gators to find new leaders. Franks played well for his first collegiate game – our touted O-Line could not protect him long enough to effectively execute our offense. I am attending the LSU game – hoping our team pulls it together and gives us the kind of performance that Gator fans cherish – GO GATORS!!! p.s. Loved the two pick-sixes – this coupled with one good drive ending in a field goal salvaged what was otherwise a very poor game by the Gators.

  17. I have to say, was not expecting this article, I was waiting for the old soft, “it’s the first game”, Give them a chance” speech. but you finally you beat us to the punch and actually said all the things we were going to say! I picture coach Mac laughing his ass off every week going.”can you believe they pay me this much?, i was coach at Colorado State for god’s sake”..

  18. Great article. Said what needed to be said. I hope this team figures it out. I hate it when our players say crap like ‘You could tell they wanted it more.’ What a joke Josh Hammond. Why do the Gators not ‘want it more?’ Maybe the players don’t, but the fans do.

  19. Well, obviously, the answer is beyond the physical. A dark spell has been cast over the offense since Tebow’s graduation. Maybe some Seminole or Bulldog voodoo at work following the Spurrier/Meyer years. Gainesville has become a graveyard where highly touted OC’s have come and died. Look at the list. All of them moved the ball and scored until they arrived UF. Brilliant offensive minds until they arrived UF where they became dunces. So how does that happen? There is a darkness at work beyond what we see and hear. It’s either that or….
    a perpetually weak-in-more-ways-than-one offensive line.

  20. Pat definitely didn’t hold back an any punches with this one and rightfully so. Just because my faith in the potential of this team is in the toilet doesn’t mean that my loyalty has changed; still Orange and Blue through and through! With that being said, I’m not yet ready to cosign on the idea that Mac had to go. Nuss, on the other hand, needs an U-Haul now! Mac came heralded as an offensive genius so he should do as Jimbo Fisher does and Spurrier did and call the offensive plays. I don’t know how to fix the biggest problem aside from poor offensive play calling which is the O-line. Talk about opening the floodgates. I guess that’s why I, being a former QB, find it hard to judge the QBs after this one. What can you do if you’re running for your life as soon as the ball is snapped? I’m feeling like Pat. No need to hold back any punches. They need Their feelings hurt just like our feelings do now. Just not sure if it’ll make a difference.

  21. Painfully obvious that McElwain is not the answer. What we just witnessed was a disgrace. We are now in year three of his tenure and we are a joke. How many more blow out losses do we have to sit through? The SEC East titles are fools gold; the SEC East has been one of the worst divisions in major college Footall for a few years, don’t let the shiny object distract you from the ineptitude. Al Golden 2.0 is at the helm folks

  22. For as bad as the Gators played and at times they did look horrible, still , they were only three plays away from winning that ballgame! The final score was 33-17, if in the first half Florida had not missed their second field goal attempt when they made the first one from almost the exact same distance and if they had not had their long touchdown run brought back because of a holding call, Florida would have had ten more points ,and if Zaire had not fumbled in Florida’s end zone, take away that seven points for Michigan and Florida would have won the game 27-26! So if they were that close when they played that badly ,I think They still have a chance of being a pretty darned good football team!

  23. If Nussmeier is not fired and the play calling does not improve dramatically as a result, I do not see Florida beating Kentucky, South Carolina, Georgia, Tennessee, Vandy, or even Missouri in the East. And LSU will crush the Gators in the SWAMP. Then, FSU puts the end to Mac at Florida. I sure hope Mac has realizes that Nussmeier has to go and does not put Gator Nation through yet another head coaching change.

  24. Hey, y’all get off of Mac! He just saved me a ton of $$. It was going to cost big bucks to get tickets for the SEC championship game, and now I don’t have to sweat the cost. Even if Florida somehow trips over itself back to Atlanta, I will not waste the time or money to go watch this mess in person. Thanks to Mac, I can buy some really high-end liquor, and watch all the “whoopins ” at home.

  25. I advised these guys, years ago, when Meyer left to hire Mike Leech. He was down in Key West at the time, waiting. The Gators would be flying high by now with record passing. But that move would have required imagination and vision. Instead, the high paid dummies at UF hire Muschamp and here we are.

  26. Foley was a solid administrator but a lousy HBC recruiter. His last selection of Coach “Huck Finn” following Coach “Boom & Bust” has caused a spiral into the realm of farce and hilarity for a once proud segment of Gator Nation.
    Who gives a F beside parents and friends if we are top notch in all sports but a non-entity in “The Sport”? Fire Nuss now, put Huck on notice and get the search on.
    Kiffen, Kelly, Petrino, Mullin, Stoops, Miles….so some are not angels…look at Saban…Meyer…Fisher….think their fan bases wanted a Huck Finn? Well neither do we. Do the right thing. BTW….I hope Huck Finn does not ruin a young talent like Franks.

  27. Spurrier said it on the radio the other day: He does not know why OCs that get head coaching jobs based on their performance as OCs go out and hire somebody else to run their offense.

    He said that he made a mistake his last two years at USC and just doesn’t get it.

    Maybe Mac needs to be the HC and the OC.

  28. I would go with Franks and let him learn or burn.
    Gator fans I feel your pain and your passion. I caught Gator fever in 1979 (0-10 and 1) but I stayed on the bandwagon realizing there was nowhere to go but up. And up we went, It has been a thrilling and fulfilling ride. We are a little down now but playing a great team to start the season will pay dividends later. We know what areas we have to work on early instead of finding out when SEC play starts.
    I will make one negative comment: how in the hell did Nuss get a big raise in the off season?

  29. I’ve been watching the recruiting over the past few years and the number of recruits has always seemed to be anemic. Their inability to move the ball on the ground only confirms my suspicions.

    As far as the OC is concerned, I’m not much of an offensive guru but it does seem that a more dynamic OC is needed. I know there are some talented play callers out there that probably would do a better job of exploiting what the defense was giving them. I wonder what the old HBC’s opinion on all of this is…

  30. Michigan went through over a decade this type of thing going from mediore to a losing season and national disgrace; not until the alumni stopped donating and the program was becoming a black eye to the university did things change. I would not wish that on anyone, they fired the coach and athletic director and decided to do what it takes to win but things had to really hit rock bottom. I would not wish that on any program or fan base

  31. I have watched the Gators play football since 1953. Have lived through the great. the good, and the bad. Watching Florida Saturday night was slow death. Being a former college baseball and football player I tend to not get caught in all the fan noise because most of them have learned the game of football from ESPN or the stands. What I witnessed Saturday was the worse display of football I have seen in all my years of watching Florida football, even worse than the Doug Dickey days. I know Steve Spurrier and I are the same age but I really believe he could still call an offensive game better than anybody on the Florida staff. The AD needs to pull Steve aside and just ask him how would you fix this mess. Florida made a big mistake when for some reason Dan Mullen wasn’t good enough to be Florida”s head coach. Lets see he presided over Florida’s offensive explosion behind Chris Leak and Tim Tebow. What happened to him. Oh yeah! He went to that preverbial power Mississippi State and made them competitive in the tough Western Division. As an offensive player in my college play in the 60″s, I would say that Florida”s offensive line is the worst I have seen. They are soft, non-aggressive and cannot figure out how to block. I blame that on both the offensive coordinator and mostly on an offensive line coach that doesn’t strike fear into his offensive line. Just because you started as an offensive lineman last year does not mean you are good enough to play this year. I have never called for the firing of a coach in my life but Coach Mac needs to to make some staff changes very quickly or face the consequences of this being a disaster of a season and yes maybe just 3 or 4 wins with all this talent. One thing more about Mullen, he could recruit and Florida is not even competitive in recruiting Florida. Wake up Gator Nation

  32. Michigan had to suffer over a decade of mediocrity and a losing season plus National Disgrace before things changed. The athletic department had become politicized and too many people who knew nothing about football where calling the shots. It took the Alumni Association to quit donating and a Revolt by the fans before things changed. They had to fire athletic director and clean house before committing to doing whatever it took to developing a winning culture. The University of Florida is an outstanding academic Institution and does not need to let things get that bad.

  33. Why won’t the coaches call the players out? Are their (the players) psyches too fragile and they are protecting them? The play of the offensive line was as bad as I have ever seen. We really don’t know how good or bad the rest of the offensive players are because they didn’t have time to run or pass at all. Why were we fed that terrible line that the offensive line was going to be a strength for us this year. You know I think I could deal with this better if they (the coaches) had been more truthful with us and told us we would stink again this year. And that to me is grounds for getting a new coach, get one that is truthful.

  34. Pat, you are still being soft on the coaching staff. I guess you know where your bread is buttered. I’ve been watching Gator football a long time. Since my freshman year in 1974. Been through the good and the bad. Overall I can say we’ve had good enough players over the years to do well. And we still do. The guys on XM College Nation said we have top ten caliber players. I agree. So what’s wrong?

    The one thing that allowed us to do well was and still is coaching. We were putrid on offense in the late 1980s, not too unlike now. Then Spurrier came in, and with the same talent we had in ‘89 took us to the SEC championship game. How? Great coaching. After Spurrier left we had the same thing. We still had good players but the coaches that followed Spurrier couldn’t get it done. It took Myer to take that talent and turn it around. Even before all that,it happened when we went from Doug Dickey to Charlie Pell.

    That’s what it will take now. The right coach can take what we have and make us a very competitive team. Right now. Unfortunately I don’t see that happening with Mac and Nuss.

  35. Why would Jeremy Foley hire a head Football Coach that has Absolutely NO SEC Head Coach CONFERENCE EXPERIENCE. THIS IS THE BIG LEAGUES . This probably is just the first of many losses. I fear Tennessee game and yes Vanderbilt, then at Kentucky whos just waiting to finally beat Us. Texas And M
    LSU most likely losses, Georgia, Then Missouri away who is improving then South Carolina away Muscamps team LOSS
    2 AND 10 NO BOWLING.

  36. McElwain is a doofus. His aw shucks comments have got to end. I don’t want to hear him say “isn’t this cool” when a reporter asks him a question when he’s down 10 points at halftime or when he says “isn’t he fun to watch?” when asked about Dalvin Cook (the answer is no). I want a coach who grits his teeth and who has some intensity in his eyes. Take a look at the difference between Jim Harbaugh or Urban Meyer on the sidelines. Jimbo Fisher has his clip board out, his reading glasses on, his headset on, and he’s locked in on what’s going on on the field. McElwain is chewing gum. He was supposed to be an offensive genius and a “quarterback whisperer” and the offense sucks as bad as it did under Muschamp and our quarterback play is pathetic. You know its bad when we switch quarterbacks and you wish you still had the previous poor quarterback (I feel bad knocking the players because I know they try hard, so I am putting the blame on the coaches). I don’t want to lose any of our current recruits, but I want a new head coach. Someone who shows some creativity, forcefulness, and who can discipline this sloppy team. Any time we get more than 5 yards on a play I wait for the holding penalty to be called.

  37. I have a suggestion for coach Mac. Remove Nussmeier from his OC duties and make him just your QB coach, with a reduction in salary (or let him leave if he does not accept the demotion) and call Mike Locksley right now and offer him the OC job immediately. Mike is a very good play caller and is just working as a special assistant coach/consultant at Bama right now. He would jump ship to become the OC at Florida, no doubt. Be innovative and proactive, coach Mac, call Mike Locksley if you have not already.

  38. The true state of the Gator Nation.

    The Gator offense has been horrible and the O-Line has been Swiss cheese since the departure of Dan Mullen & Urban Meyer in 2010.

    In that time we’ve had 3 HC’s, 5 OC’s, numerous assistant/position coaches on offense, plus numerous QB’s (Driskel & Brisset did well once they transferred, and are now in the NFL). All with the same results, no offensive production to speak of. The Gators Offense has not been in the Top 100 of the FBS since McElwain and Nussmeir got here.

    With our horrible O-Line recruiting, poor talent evaluation, and poor O-Line development, there is no QB who could succeed in our system. Will Grier was the lone brief exception (watch him tonight’s game: WV vs VT) and he got kicked out.

    But we can’t blame it all on the O-Line or other offensive players when the opposing team is sending seven men to rush, and we’re only blocking with five. Our offense shows absolutely no blitz or hot read recognition, and very poor execution by all, especially the QB’s.

    Just like Muschamp, Gator OC Doug Nussmeir is stubborn and far too predictable (the fatal flaw of MANY coaches), and in way over his head. He is telegraphing our plays; either through formation, player package, or just stubborn predictability.

    His old boss Saban read him like a book in the SECCG the last two years in Atlanta. All any opposing coach has to do, is watch our game film versus Bama in the last two SECCG’s to see how to shut us down offensively. Its easy, especially since Nussmeir doesn’t make great half time adjustments. Our stellar defensive talent & play has kept us in all these games the last two seasons under McElwain.

    Nussmeir used to be an assistant at Bama, and he only succeeded there because he had Saban & staff and all that ridiculous Bama talent to make him look good. Nussmeir & McElwain are complete frauds, and also best friends. And McElwain is just like Les Miles, far too loyal to his assistant coaches, and too dumb to see that they are part of the glaring problem.

    While at UF (15′ 16′ & 17′) and Michigan (14′) as an OC, Nussmeir’s offenses have always been ranked outside the Top 100 in the FBS. At UF, his offense has been ranked DEAD LAST in the SEC the two years he’s been here. And McElwain just gave him a big raise and a two-year contract extension during the off season!

    Go look at all of Nussmeir’s stops around the country as an OC or QB coach since 2008, and you will see that once he left each school, their offenses improved vastly and shot up the Top 100 list.

    It doesn’t take a good proven head coach three damn years to figure out if his OC and offensive scheme are going to work at any level, much less in the SEC. If nothing changes by the Tennessee game in two weeks, and we lose to them at home in the Swamp, McElwain and Stricklin are gonna feel the same heat and loss of revenue that Muschamp and Foley felt.

    If the Gators lose to Muschamp and South Carolina, that will really start the ball rolling. Throw in losses to Georgia and FSU, and its gonna get real bad. The bad thing is, Gator AD Stricklin just signed McElwain to a two year extension. And if he’s fired before next season, McElwain stands to collect $2.25 million ($12.5 million maximum) per year, minus the new salary if he takes a position at another SEC school within 90 days.

    A similar bone headed contract extension under very similar circumstances was made with Muschamp just two years before he was ultimately fired. But all the blame ultimately lies at the feet of McElwain and the Gators AD, Stricklin.

    The pathetic McElwain/Nussmeir offense has never cracked the FBS Top 100 since they got here! And McElwain is supposed to be an offensive genius and QB whisperer. The Gators offense was ranked 112th in 2015, 116th in 2016, and after one game into the 2017 season, we are now ranked 118th out of only 122 schools in the FBS!

    Let that sink in, and then go look at all the inferior and lowly schools on that list who are ranked above UF. Many of them don’t have the resources, funds, facilities, sponsors, contracts, locale, recruiting base, tradition, history, and big money Boosters that UF enjoys.

    The Gators are 0-6 vs FSU, Bama, and Michigan under Jim McElwain. And in those six games, UF only had 70 total points, 35 of which were scored by the defense and special teams! Zook and Muschamp had better offenses. And remember, this is all coming from the guy who said he could coach a dog to be the QB at UF.

    If the Gators offense can’t crack the Top 100 of the FBS for 4 straight years (next season being year 4) and continue to show ZERO improvement, they all need to be fired.

    McElwain has backed into everything he’s gotten while at UF (2x SEC East Champs, and a very weak SEC East) even though he basically inherited a dumpster fire (save for the NFL caliber talent Muschamp left him on defense, which is why we won most games) from Muschamp. If someone doesn’t wake up and right the ship, the Gators will be joining the ranks of Texas (10+ year slump) very soon.

    You have to be a cold calculating CEO (Spurrier, Meyer) to successfully run the UF football program and win big. Good thing is, if McElwain does the same thing this season that he’s done the last three, Spurrier is already on the staff to take over as interim head coach and/or interim AD.

    Sorry Gators fans, but we’ve been duped again, as the stats don’t lie…

      • Thanks. I figured I would provide the glaring truth since nobody else has.

        Both Chump and Mac had my support from day one, and I stuck with them until it was painfully evident that they were in WAY over their heads. The Sunshine Pumpers never want to look at the stats, because the truth hurts and stats aren’t any fun.

        The crazy thing is McElwain gave Nussmeir a huge contract extension and raise in the off season. His salary jumped from $525,000 in 2016 to $842,725 in 2017. That is absolutely crazy! He’s the worst OC in all of college football, not just the SEC. What has he done to justify that massive increase? I swear, this entire scenario is Muschamp 2.0

        UF’s garbage offense and QB play has to be killing Spurrier. His office (and brilliant mind) is stuffed into a broom closet in BHG stadium, while Nussmeir and McElwain are running UF’s program further into the ground all the while enriching themselves just like Chump did.

        UF is fixing to resemble Michigan (under Hoke & Rodgriguez), LSU (under Hallman & DiNardo), and Texas (under Mack Brown). We are entering a 10 year skid, that will be very difficult to recover from in today’s SEC and NCAA.

        The rest of the SEC (the West, the division that counts) has passed us by, and now Miami and Richt are fixing to pass us. FSU passed us in 2010 and has never looked back. Things were great back when Lombardi and Machen were running the show.

        When it comes to football, Foley has made horrible hires (Zook, Muschamp, and McElwain) and decisions. Go look at all of Urban Meyer’s Asst. Coaches who left UF since 2009 and see what kind of success they are having as head coaches now.

        I give Machen the credit for bringing Urban here, not Foley. And the Sunshine Pumpers want to think that Foley brought Spurrier to UF, and in the process, made both Spurrier and UF great.

        But its the other way around, as Foley gets way too much credit for the house that Charlie Pell, Galen Hall, and Steve Spurrier built. Along with those three; it was Ben Hill Griffin (and BHG Jr.), Bill Carr, Bill Arnsparger, Marshall Criser, Robert Bryan, and John Lombardi that were actually responsible for building the Gator Football Dynasty. Foley excels in all areas of the AD except football.

        If we get crushed by UT at home, I will have to send Stricklin an email, amended with the proper stats of course. 😉

        GO GATORS!

    • I completely agree with you on the suspended players…There are great kids playing high school ball right now that would kill for the chance to get a full ride scholarship from ANY D1 school, but will never get that chance. This is what we are dealing with for my son. He is 6’2”, 280 lbs and plays O tackle for his high school team that went to the Florida state 1A championship last year and will more than likely go again this year. His GPA is a 3.8 and he will graduate high school 3 credits short of a college general AA degree. So if your looking Coach, check out the smaller high schools. You seem to get a crap load of “off field issues” with your so called “blue chip” players. Untapped resources could be your best friend…..

    • Why in the world did we hire this imposter as an “offense guru?” He apparently knows nothing about offense, and his tag-along OC appears to not know how to tie his own shoes. These guys are the biggest hiring bust in the history of this school. The Zook hire looks fantastic compared to these carnival barkers.

      • Yup, before its over these clowns may eclipse Muschump as the worst hire in the SEC in well over a decade. It will be fun to watch how this season turns out. Stricklin and Foley screwed the Gator Nation – again.