The final High Five of this football season includes an Urban realization and a Heisman ballot almost complete.
1. It looks as if Florida is all but a lock for the Gator Bowl against either Iowa or Penn State. The SEC will get two teams intoBCS bowls no matter what happens Saturday in Atlanta. If South Carolina wins, Auburn will head to the Orange Bowl. It does say something that the SEC will have 10 bowl teams this year and two in the BCS. It will make for an interesting bowl season.
2. There was a moment Saturday night in the tiny interview room at Doak Campbell when a reporter asked Urban Meyer a question and mentioned that Florida lost five of its last eight games. Meyer turned to sports information director Steve McClain and said, “Five of the last eight?” It showed me that Meyer was so focused on trying to win a game every week he hadn’t realized how bad the big picture is. Florida is now 8-6 in its last 14 games. Here’s the big question I’m sure a lot of people are thinking — If Urban the part-time head coach didn’t work is he going to go back to being a workaholic and not delegating so much? And at what risk to his health?
3. Miami had to fire Randy Shannon. He was 16-16 in a mediocre conference. Miami fans bailed on the program. The scenes in Sun Life Stadium were embarrassing week after week. And in the end, it doesn’t matter how many players you graduate or how few are arrested. It’s always about wins and losses.
4. No matter what happens Saturday, I’m voting for Cam Newton for the Heisman. That is, unless something comes out before next Monday that makes him ineligible. I’ve seen that environment in Tuscaloosa and to come back from 24-0 to win sealed the trophy for him. Meanwhile, Alabama was put in the same position as Florida was in 2009 with the target on their backs.How’d that work out for the Tide?
5. Player of the week goes to the man who will be second on my Heisman ballot. Stanford’s Andrew Luck was 21-of-30 for 305 yards and four touchdowns. Third place on the ballot? I’m waiting on that. Because I might just vote for Marcus Lattimore.
Three to grow on
Auburn-South Carolina, 4 p.m., CBS
FSU-Virginia Tech, 7:45, ESPN
Nebraska-Oklahoma, 8, ABC
Thanks for the ‘season of weird- part duex’ and unfortunatly it isn’t over …just begining! I think THE TALENT that FLORIDA has -had all year- is the ONLY bright spot in all this darkness and gloom…FLORIDA IS NOT THAT FAR DOWN -IT JUST NEEDS THE RIGHT (the next) OFFENSIVE-GURU FOR AN O.C.!!! aND SOME TALENT AT linbacker PLEASE!!!
Between all the LOCAL-TALK SHOWS and PRINT (THANK YOU, btw) INFO….and OPINONS…NOBODY EXPECTED ANOTHER NATIONAL or even SEC CHAMPIONSHIP …BUT THIS YEAR- FOR FLA FOOTBALL- WAS TOALLY INEPT in every FACET except PUNTING!!!
GO GATORS!!! Jordan needs a LITTLE MORE AIR UNDER HIS LONG BALL but THEY WERE TIGHT SPIRELS!! And JORDAN…DON’T LEAVE YOUR FEET A LOT WHEN PLAYING ARCH-RIVALS -EXPECT CHEAP-SHOTS!!
THE YOUNG GUYS ARE THE KEY -Demps and Rainey LEAD!!! and ‘together next year’s team willl BRING US BACK TO GLORY!!! or at least CLOSER than this year!!!
I’m calling it…”Gamecocks shock Tigers win SEC”…and does Dan Mullen have a brother?? Maybe Jeremy Foley knows?? Thanks Pat your articles are always superior!
Thank you for so appropriately and accurately summing up all of my thoughts over the course of the year with each column you wrote. The Gator Nation is as strong as ever and we will persevere, but not without the old Urban, a new OC, and some major maturation of a very young team.
Hey Pat – Thanks for the great High Five’s this year – and I totally understand taking your birthday off – especially this year. You jumped off the Oregon bandwagon around High Five Vol 8. I expect the Civil War to be alot of fun and it is a 3:30 for us East Coasters! If you were looking for a 4th for your Heisman – check out Darren Thomas – he is the anti-Masoli.
Pat you have been awesome and so has Gator Nation. Dumbazzio is done and so is Brantley. I’m already looking forward to our Bowl and the beautiful relationship we will have with Reed. Go Gators!!!!!!!
Thank you so much for your hard work and dedication in bring us closer to our team with your analysis and insights of the team. I wish you and Robbie good health and many more years covering Gatorsports.com
You said it, Pat!
Lest we become unreasonably infatuated with Urban Meyer due to his early success – and acquire a blind spot – let’s see how he stacks up to The Ole Ball Coach’s stats.
Meyer’s winning percentage at UF is presently 81.01% (as of 11/28/10; after the “Joke at Doak”). If he wins the upcoming Bowl game, his winning percentage will be 81.25% (six full years, including Bowl games).
BEHOLD, S.O.S.’s Gator stats (per Wikipedia):
>Spurrier’s 12 year UF winning percentage (incl. Bowls) is 81.67%!
>Playing one less game per season than now, he NEVER won less than 9 games!
>He’s one of only two Coaches to have won 10+ games in six consecutive seasons!
>He averaged 10.21 wins/year. [again, playing 1 less game/year]!
>With the exception of his very first WEEK as the Gators’ new Head Ball Coach, he was NEVER ranked outside the top 25 at any point!
>He NEVER finished any season ranked outside of the top 15!
>He finished in the top ten 9 times!
>Had 5 top five finishes!
>His AVERAGE end-of-season rank was 6.8!
>Of his 6 SEC Championship victories, four were consecutive! [his longest “dryspell” was three years].
>And, he was SEC Coach of the Year 5 times!
For Urban Meyer to merely MATCH Spurrier’s number of SEC Championship victories (in 12 seasons), he will have to WIN 4 of the next six!
Urban, you’ve got your work cut out for you!
Note to Jeremy Foley: see comment immediately above!
I like Urban Meyer a lot and believe he’ll bring this program right back up. However, he’s got to make changes with his staff, commit to an offensive philosophy and play the appropriate personnel. That likely means Reed and Driskell at QB and the big bruiser RB he says we need. And somewhere there’s a marquee defensive end who loves to pass rush. What this season underscores is that Urban has to be fully involved and Adazzio was put into a spot he couldn’t handle. Let him go back to OL and pursue an OC whose gotten it done somewhere else.
I thought we had learned with Zook, though I assume Meyer’s cred carried a lot of weight, but UF is a premier program: We do not need to be, nor should we be any coach’s first major position. We should not have hired Zook because he had not proven himself as a head coach elsewhere, and we should not have Addazio as OC because he has not proven himself at the position elsewhere.
Both Spurrier and Meyer had proven themselves to be winners at other programs, and were more or less known commodities because of that. Zook and Addazio are both entusiastic guys (thought Addazio’s abrasive personality has completely turned me off) and excellent recruiters, but had never carried the big weight. We are Florida: We don’t need to hire question marks.
I cannot imagine that Jeremy Foley will allow this situation to stand. The problem is not recruiting — we’ve got top five recruiting classes stacked on top of each other. It’s the coaches, and if it’s not obvious to Meyer it certainly is to Foley.
Go Gators, and Go (Away) Addazio
I’m bored, so I’m going to play Captain Obvious here for a moment and point out things that are so glaringly obvious that I cannot imagine why they’e been issues all season long. Let’s call this Captain Obvious’ Top Ten List of DUH’s.
1. When you flip-flop between a quarterback that is only used for passing, and a quarterback that is only used for running, the opposing defenses will eventually notice a pattern.
2. When you pass on third and long it is often advisable to throw the ball beyond the line of scrimmage.
3. When it’s third and really long, a running play that has historically gained no more that three of four yards might not be the ticket.
4. If you consistantely throw the ball to a reciever eight yards out, when what you needed is ten, don’t be suprised when your fans gouge their eyes out with cocktail skewers (or boo).
5. Running an offense that is seemingly designed to score “just enough” points assumes that you have a defense that can dictate what “just enough” is.
6. If you have a center that cannot snap the ball properly, then just maybe he’s not really a center.
7. Having your “starting” quarterback line up on the wing as a receiver while your second quarterback takes the snap really only means that you have wasted a position.
8. Faking a punt in the first quarter looks desperate, and if it fails is probably going to deflate your team’s morale more than succeeding would have inflated it.
9. Trying to motivate your team with new uniforms looks desperate.
10. In business, in sports, in the military… everywhere… when a unit is consistantly underperforming – or in this case embarrassing itself – it is the person responsible for that unit who is responsible. In this case, that’s Addazio.
So, those are my top ten DUH’s. Feel free to add.
Scott, loved the top ten, and right on target. Pat, thanks for the work this year except don’t be afraid to call it like it is and go ahead and say what you have been dancing around. I have been following Florida football since 1969 and am an alum along with my daughter, so we bleed Orange and Blue, but I was EMBARASSED by our offense’s performance since week 2. I have never seen it look so inept or absolutely boring and unimaginative. Did I mention predictable? This is not Florida football, it’s a sorry blend of Michigan and Illinois football, with a shot of Miami ineptitude thrown in. Damn ashamed is what I am.
If there was ever a reason for Addazio to be gone, it had to be running out the clock in the fourth quater trailing by three scores. One drive which resulted in nothing took 6 minutes off the clock. The FSU coaches must have thought they are trying to help us or they havd given up. I don’t want hear about how we win time of possition or yards gained. I have noted that currently we get 0 points for that. Also according to Addazio “we take what the defense gives us” USC gaave us 3 firat downs in the first 3 quarters as FSU let us run up the middle down three scores to help end the game.
We need Kerwin Bell as OC.
Yeah, how did I miss that DUH?
Number 11: When the other team is leading by three or more scores, running the clock out is thier freaking job, not ours. Just unbelievable.
I want to say this to the Gator Nation.. Its more than your offensive play calling. When will everyone see that Urban Meyer is to blame as much as any coach on this team. He is the “HEAD” ball coach, unless that title doesnt fit him as far as duties are concerned. I live in Gainesville, im not a Gator fan, but most of my colleagues and family are. I blame poor coaching for this season, NOT BRANTLEY. Im a FSU fan, and in that game Brantley threw the ball 12 times.. missed 6, 1 being the interception. 12 times??? What QB can get in a rhythm throwing the ball 12 times. Then Urban with the fake punt early, that was a HUGE gamble that boosted the Seminoles momentum and it never let up from that point. Everyone watches film, everyone knows he likes to do a fake something to take the home field out of it. Dont you think they were ready? Back to what I was saying about Urban being the HEAD COACH, lack of use of the playmakers, i Blame URBAN, Andre Debose I think his name is, that Kid is electric, when ever he touches the ball, or even on the field… every coach for the other team has to respect him, he makes things happen.. I saw him in the FSU game ONCE which is what set up the TD for the Gators.. after that the Kick coverage did a better job with him, but doesnt he play on offense somewhere? The QB everyone wants in the game, the REED kid.. he turned the ball over just like Brantley, but who scored for Florida? Reed or Brantley….Brantley! What im saying Urban… If your Starting QB is only throwing the ball 12 times a game, how do you expect him to gel with his receivers… get that timing down… He cant… I blame Urban Meyer for Florida’s season.. if he know the offense isnt working, he didnt call for a change to fit the players he has this s eason… so you all should thank URBAN for your season..
Here’s DUH # 12-
When you :
a. lose a once in a lifetime icon like Tebow.
b. lose five blue chippers to the NFL
c. lose a top D coordinator like Charlie Strong
d. Play 19 freshman……
there will be a fall-off in production. That’s college football-we are not alone, look at Texas.
Rest assured, changes will be made, and they will lead to an SEC Championship next year.
Keep’n the Faith
please excuse the typos, was in a hurry,
No, when you return a deep and veteran offensive line, have a talented three year back-up at quarterback, have four experienced backs, and at least four reasonably experienced blue-chip recievers, a much better than average offensive unit should be the result. Steve Spurrier did much, much more with much, much less his first couple of years at UF. I’ll cut the defense some slack for the reasons you mentioned, but not the offense. There is absolutely no excuse for the team that was put on the field this year.
Pat, thank you for the great work this year. I have enjoyed the writing, swampcast and P.D. show. I hope you are right and Urban will fix this mess. Is there any way he would add Kerwin Bell to the staff as OC? That would be a dream come true.
I am so glad this football season is over with. It has been a frustrating year to have been a gator fan. I have trust in Urban Meyer and know he will make some coaching changes and recruit like never before. I wish he would bring Dwayne Dixon and Kerwin Bell to the football staff because they can help players to understand the importance of playing football for the Gators and can help our offensive production to be at the top again. Wait till next year again!! Thanks for the great coverage of the Gators this year Pat and Robbie!!
We need Bad-ass players “AND” Smart coaches not Bad-ass coaches! As a coaching staff we are not very smart and the way the team performed shows this to be a fact. An OC who is terribly over matched and a DC who is a NFL coach. We need and must get coaches who will be smart and turn them loose with the enormous amount of talent that is the Florida GATORS. Been a Gator since 1962 and am a father of a Gator grad with a degree in Chemistry and in her last semester of Pharmasy school. We also bleed BLUE and ORANGE in this household. SMART is the word!!!
Always a great read Pat. You are entertaining and informative. What more can a writer be?
I’m glad to see Gator fans are not in denial, at least most of them. I wish I could say the same for the coaches. Meyer may have popped his rubberband back there. He doesn’t seem to have any answers. Someone go back and play the old video from when he was hired. He had all the answers. It happens.
When you lose a Mullen and a Strong you have to reload. He justed didn’t have the talent on hand and was too busy to worry about it. We’ll see if he does now. If so, Addazio and Brantley will be gone come January. Sad, but true. It’s that or another 8-4 season and trip to Jacksonville.
With all due respect, throughout the course of the season I’ve found most of the gatorsports articles to be pandering (to UF coaches/staff) and short-sighted. Andreu’s article, after the KY game I believe, regarding the gators being ‘transformed’ was almost giddy. It wasn’t reality. The only article I found worth a read was the one you wrote titled – “This has to be a wake-up call for change”. Your latest just left me annoyed. I’ll explain as I quote from it.
>>>If there is one silver lining — and it’s hardly a blinding one — it is this.
Your coach gets it.<<>>He understands that it’s a mess. For the first time publicly, Meyer looked this season straight in the eye and it made him ill.<<>>I asked him after the game if this was the first time he had realized what so many of you have been screaming at me (figuratively, of course, with your all capitals e-mails) for weeks.
“No,” he said. “I have felt that way for awhile.”
A lot of people have.<<>>They are frustrated with the offense. They are frustrated with the defense. They are frustrated with just about everything.
Meyer made it clear he’s with them, but waited until this awful performance to admit it.
“The season’s over,” he said.<<<
Okay, another note to Coach – it goes waaaaaaaaay beyond generic frustration. We are SPECIFICALLY frustrated with specific things. Sorry, but I'm not drinking the Meyer being 'at one with the fans'kool-aide. Is him being frustrated supposed to be another new revelation? Of course he's frustrated. What coach worthy of being a coach, put in Meyer's current situation, wouldn't be frustrated?
Lastly, as for 'the season is over' comment. Yes, that's fairly obvious but glad to know Coach is seeing the light. That one's right up there with numerous comments Coach has made during the course of the season. Remember when he didn't realize Debose hadn't been in the line-up or when he didn't know what our standing was in the SEC East or more recently when he knew nothing about McCarney possibly going to N. Texas or that we've lost 5 of our last 8? I could give LOTS of examples of statements by Meyer this season which actually have made me worry about him.
At present, I'm curious how the media lets Meyer get away with quickly diverting attention to big time recruiting…as if the players we've gotten the past several years are just a bunch of 0-Star slackers.
Bottom line, I think every coach, even ones that have two national championships under their belts, should be held accountable to answer some tough questions. Even the President of the United States is expected to do this…at least the tough questions, and tough follow-up questions if necessary, are actually asked.
For those interested – "The Croak at Doak" on the Gator Country website makes some interesting points.
In my post above, I tried commenting on Pat’s article as I quoted from it but for some reason several of my comments weren’t included when it posted. Here they are:
Regaring the statment that Meyer now ‘gets it’:
Okay, what EXACTLY does Coach Meyer get? Does he get that Brantley was never going to excell in the spread, running the option, etc., especially with no power type back? Does he get that he never should have made Addazio his offensive coordinator? What..EXACTLY?
The article went on to say that Meyer understands it’s a mess and that for the first time he looked this season straight in the eye and it made him ill.
My reaction to those statements:
Soooo, is Meyer ‘getting it’ consist of him realizing that things are a mess? Wow, now there’a a revelation. Note to Coach – My husband was ill after the first game of the season against Miami of Ohio.
The last thing I commented on was with regard to Pat asking Meyer after the game if this was the first time he had realized what so many of us have been screaming at Pat (figuratively)for weeks and Meyer answers by saying, “No”, that he’s “felt that way for a while”.
My comment regarding that:
What is it SPECIFICALLY that we’ve been screaming that Meyer has now realized and how SPECIFICALLY is he feeling our pain?
The article only went on to talk about frustration and I’ve already commented on that above. The article never got specific.
Pleaee, Pat, hold their feet to the fire. I’m one of many who can’t afford to be a big gator booster, who can wield influence through contributions. You have to be the voice and questioner for the common but loyal gator fan.
Addazio as OC absolutely has to go.
For the last five plus years, we’ve had Top 5 recruting classes. Typcailly with all programs, approx 25% of those athletes won’t “pan out.” Am I the only Gator that believes our recruits are NOT GETTING COACHED??? Not just Urban or Steve A. but across the board! Good luck to Coach McCarney BUT when is the last sack our defense recorded. There is no player on our team that absolutely strikes fear in opponents other than Rainey/Demps speed. We need quality coaching.
ATL Gator I agree wholeheartedly. Jordan Reed is our future. He can run, pass, and he makes it confusing for defenses to prepare for him because of his dual threat capability. If you look at the top two teams in the nation, Oregon and Auburn, both of those teams have dual threat quarterbacks and they are winning!! I do not understand why Coach Urban Meyer pulled Jordan Reed out of the game against Florida State after he moved our offense down to the redzone of Florida State. I think that the coaching staff should start working with Jordan Reed in the bowl game and definitely in the spring!!! Moreover, they also need to work with Trey Burton on his passing in the off season and then we will have two of the best spread offense quarterbacks in the SEC. Trey Burton and Jordan Reed is our future! Stop wasting time trying to make John Brantley out of a spread quarterback because it will never happen in our lifetime. Never!!! End of conversation….
You Gator fans are unreal. If you went 0-12, you would say “we should be playing for the National Title”. Face it you suck…When you win, its in every paper in the state, every day…When you lose, you get 1 day with a couple of pics, then nothing else. So much for Bradley being born to play qb @ uf…BUT hey enjoy the Toilet Bowl you’ll be playing in and maybe next year Meyer can try a lineman at qb….
You can’t expect too much of Pat. That is not how it works. This is still big business. There are tickets and merchandise to sell. Pat can agree with the fans occasionally to maintain his credibility but he can’t bite the hand that feeds him quotes and access. There is very little Meyer can do. He has lost his edge and his players have gone south on him. He is in a tough spot. Some denial is actually called for. He needs a QB. Someone, quick, check and see who is winning the JC National Championship.
@Golfhog: You said it best. No way Pat and Robbie ask the tough follow-up questions. Or just the obvious questions. Access to coaches and players is their life blood, there is no way they risk their meal ticket forcing Meyer to state the obvious, say like, Adazzio must go! Remember Ron Zook? We only learned about the real Zook after he was long gone and not able to punish the reporters for their stories. If any of you out there in blog-land think Pat and Robbie are real journalists, wake up! They are little more than adjuncts to the UAA Sports Information Department. And I do not mean that in a mean-spirited way. Real journalism is printing that which others would rather you did not, everything else is mere publicity.
I suspect Urban will get it fixed. Losing does not agree with him and hopefully it does not agree with the players or other coaches. This team (and every UF team) belongs to the University of Florida, not the coaches or a chosen few. Students, Alumni and fans are the ones who bleed Orange and Blue. It is a part of us forever…..it is part of our soul. There is not one football coach who is a Florida Alum. That’s ok; just don’t think this is your team and your team alone. Let’s not have closed practices and keep everything so “calculated.” We stick together in all kinds of weather, which means we share the good, the bad and the ugly. It is ok to be human….it is ok to communicate with Gator Nation the same way you would with your family. We are one family……and that doesn’t mean everyone always has to agree. Let’s have some fun! There was no “fun” being had this year by this team. You’ve got to have fun playing your butt off and flying around, and you’ve got to have a system that allows athletes to do that. I don’t think the players really believed in the game plans, the play calling or schemes this year. They are mostly all good guys in a good system, so they never said that….never criticized the plan or the calls. The defense didn’t play with confidence and swagger and the offense looked more scared than anything. They didn’t play with confidence. They didn’t have “IT.” We need to find “IT” again. The guy from Denver isn’t coming back, so what’s it going to be or who is it going to be?
Marcus Lattimore? Heisman ballot?? Now?!?
A bit premature, don’t you think?! Besides, do his numbers justify it?
Don’t get me wrong, he is OUTSTANDING, and I’ve said as much here before.
I wish we had him, but…
pa-leeeze – be serious!!
@Scott Stambaugh —
Thanks for that concise summary of 2010 Gator Football.
As much as we’d like to, we must never forget this debacle!
What’s old – “wait till next year” – is new again.
Good posts all. Anyone that feels sorry for Meyer getting the wrath of the fans for HIS poor performance this year needs to wake up. What would happen in each of our fields of work if we had the resources that this Drama Queen had, 4mill per year as a salary and underachieved? We would be fired. This poor excuse for a leader had yet admitted that any of it is his fault. I for one wish he would stroke out again and retire for good this time.
An open message to Urban Meyer:
As you very well know your relationship with Stave Adazzio henceforth referred to as “that guy” has proved to be costly. He has turned the Gator fan base into an angry mob and now you are experiencing the wrath of that group. That guy has been an utter, complete, inexcusable failure. There are not too many other words to describe that guy without being flat out rude and personal. Urban that guy is not an offensive coordinator and you know it! The fan base knows it and worst of all you put your players under his tutelage and ruined the senior year of some really good guys. Miami had what it took and stepped up and relieved their head coach of his job and I honestly and truthfully expected the first words coming out of your mouth on the radio program to have been “That Guy: has been relieved of his duties. Guess what that didn’t happen and neither did your radio program. I guess you believe you are really that special and nobody else can coach like you? I would suggest you reconsider the folks you actually work for, this university may in fact get a lot of money from the Bull Gators but when fans stop showing up for mediocrity I suspect you may rethink your position. Don’t get me wrong your are a good coach and your record speaks for itself. What you fan base IS telling you is to get off your high horse and quit letting friendship put you in a position you may very well come to regret down the road. Let me put it to you real simple. If I were a recruits daddy and “That Guy” showed up at my door I would slam it in his face and be on the phone with you giving you the whatnot for having the gall to send him to my house and at that point I would tell you Thanks but No Thanks my son will never play for “That Guy” who ruined and finished off a cherished year for the seniors of the University of Florida. YOU NEED TO FIRE HIM NOW.
I don’t won’t to see John Brantley again. Let him go to Texas where he belongs. He is horrible. We need to start Jordan Reed,I don’t care if he sounds like a mouse in the hudddle. Anyone is better than Brantley. He is HORRIBLE. Let him be HORRIBLE in TEXAS. The season is loss. He is the first qb who can’t lead a team to a touchdown in the first quarter. He has got to go. When Meyer put him in when we were driving against FSU and he threw that interception(GAMEOVER.) If we scored we woulded had mommemtum. And the ball in the second half to start. This team is making average teams look all world. MEYER is at fault. I almost hate he came back. And for what. He thumbs his nose at the fans. If he didn’t have two NC tittles JF would not let him get away with all this bullcrap he is pulling. GET RID OF JOHNNY BRANTLEY AND STEVE ADDIZZIAO. I still love gators and will root like hell for them. GO Gators. Gators stick together in all kinds of weather
Pat, I for one am not looking to hear Meyer say someone other than Addazio will be calling the plays in the bowl game. I’m looking to hear that Addazio has gone bye-bye, period.
The play calling has been atrocious all year, true, but that’s hardly the sum of all our problems. Seriously, does this offense look like it’s been well coached on the other six days of the week? Addazio might not be responsible for everything that’s wrong with this team, but his two main areas of responsibility – the offense, and the offensive line – have been an unmitigated embarrassment all year, not to mention its underperformance last year.
Now we have recruits jumping ship. This problem cannot be allowed to fester, so Uncle Fester must go (just came up with that, hee hee). We should have been National Champions last year, we should have at least made it to Atlanta this year, and next year cannot be allowed to slip away, too. Sorry Addazio, you suck, and there’s no tenure in football. If you weren’t such an arogant jackass in your press briefings I would have found a nicer way of saying that.
Thank you Scott for putting it so bluntly because that is what us as fans need to hear from the people who are making the decisions. Addazio is potentially the worse coordinator in college football. He is totally clueless when it comes to play calling and game-planning. As someone who has bled orange and blue their entire life and who may be a student at the University of Florida in a couple of years, I will not be able bear him and this offense. The fact that Meyer is realizing “We are down” now is unbelievable. We get smashed by Alabama, are only in the game against LSU because of their mistakes, lose homecoming to MSU, get smashed by the ole ball coach, and get whooped by FSU. Hmmm….Not to mention the wins haven’t exactly been impressive. Also in 2009 Meyer and his buddy Addazio take the greatest player in college football history and the most talented defense and lead them to the worst 13 win season in college football history. Meyer get your head screwed on staright, clean out the staff on both sides and Go Gators!!
Alot of good points above but what i have been wondering through this whole disaster is if Urban can do it without Dan Mullen. Mullens was with him at BG, Utah and 2 championships at UF, and we have not been the same team since he left. DM has turned MIss. St. into a top 25 program and we are headed in the other direction. UM’s answers to post game questions, the personell decisions, game plans and inability to make adjsutments during the game or the following weeks make we wonder if UM will ever have success here without DM.
People are kidding me all over Orlando hoping Addizio comes back because he is so easy to beat. Do you have any hope of this happening or do we cellar dwell next year with a repeat offense with plus this and excuse that!!!!!!!!!!??????????
This is a clever, but on target review of the Addizio philosophy of play calling. Enjoy!
you are so right about Meyer.Owe him a lot for the past,but as a person, can’t hold a candle to the ole ball coach.And how many Gator fans felt good for S.O.S., even after demolishing Florida.Spurrier seemed to raise 4 good kids, and still go to the Gator and quarterback clubs,did all of his shows,and the team and the fans were a unit, now UHHHHbann keeps them apart from us.Close practice in pre season, really helped this year.And his thinking was terrible. I truly believe he had emotinal problems and the medicine given him really affected his life style and coaching.Hope he gets it back together,but we’re in trouble deep.
Surely God will smile on us and we will not be offered a bowl game! Haven’t we suffered anough?! If one is offered, maybe we will show some final class and turn it down. Having been a Gator my entire 69 years, I have never seen coaching as bad as it was this season. My feeling is that Meyer is no longer interested and maybe retiring is his best option. If he stays, then he must be more involved and must have some better coaches … on both sides of the ball. Enough is enough. Gators have too much pride to suffer another season like this one and Foley needs to be sure of that. Losing is one thing, being humiliated game after game is something else!
Coach Meyer: Pick ONE QB as starter and one as backup..Pick ONE offense and stick with it…Surround yourself with QUALITY postion coaches. Get YOUR head back into all aspects of the game…If you absolutely have to, It’s ok to run ONE dive play per game.
Pat, that was the dumbest column I’ve ever read. Was that really the problem you saw on the field this year? A well-coached but untalented team? Ask yourself this: Was it a less talented team than Spurrier adopted when he came to UF? I just don’t know what to say. Perhaps the talent isn’t as high as many think, but bottom of SEC talent? Did Addazio just give you a daughter or something? Wow. wow wow wow…
While we’re all after Addazio’s head, remember it was Meyer who sat in a press conference weeks back and said that he is the one who approves of everything done offensively. Look it up. I believe it was in the same press conference where he said there are ‘no bad play calls’…only lack of execution. No doubt Addazio has to go, but when it comes to ascribing blame, Meyer is just as guilty and should not be let off the hook so easily. He’s not King of UF. He’s a very well compensated employee.
Regarding Pat’s latest article about our lack of talent this season being the culprit….and comparing this football season with our basketball season after they won back to back national championships…that the NIT would be comparable to the Gator Bowl, all I can say is u n b e l i e v a b l e!! That would be like walking into Rupp Arena in Lexington and explaining a lousy basketball season to the Kentucky basketball fans by comparing it to their football team’s lack of success. They would boo you to Tennessee and back. Please explain the difference in Florida State this year. Oh, that’s right…a new coach! I’m done with these cheerleader articles. I want some objective jounalism, not a cartwheel with pom poms. Goodnight Gator Nation and God Bless.
I agree with Scott.
Lack of talent doesn’t explain the confusion on offense or the predictable play calling.
Lack of talent doesn’t explain why Meyer doesn’t know the substitution patterns of the players, or even which players played and which didn’t.
Lack of talent doesn’t explain how your DLine coach leaves for another job and the media has to tell you, because you have no clue.
Lack of talent doesn’t explain why your best QB (Reed), practices with the TE’s and not the QB’s.
Face facts, Dooley, UF has BIG PROBLEMS. And those problems are right at the top. Meyer has to get his stuff together, go back to the tough, hard-nosed guy he used to be, and stop giving jobs to his best friends rather than those best qualified.
Gator nation is grateful for the job he has done, and all his success, and would have plenty of patience for a well coached team with limitations due to youth, etc, but THIS, THIS is madness and chaos. We have NO patience for looking like a peewee team out there. We can handle losing, but not EMBARRASSMENT.
Nice try Pat. But, we all know you are smarter than that. This is a tough spot for you to be sure. You love the gators, you love your job. Who could see this coming? I guess you are required to be the head cheerleader now but, it stinks. What a collapse!! At least you could be honest about one thing; this won’t be much better next year, maybe the year after. I guess it is time to lower the bar, without it falling on Meyer, that is.
I guess he should have resigned. But, who is available? Mullen? Stoops? Spurrier?
You have to have a special dual threat QB to run the spread option. Anyone knows that. Meyer started to believe in his own infalibility. Without a great QB, it is not that great an offense.
Football staff dynamics don’t make sense to most people. You are either on the inside (which you are not and have never claimed to be) or you can only guess what the staff is thinking by observing the team in action. For all of us fans and a few journalist (whose job it is to make educated guesses about what is going on – you were not cheer leading), we are only guessing why the disaster (inept play in all areas) happened this year. Still, I don’t like your theory. It does not explain the confusion, predictability, and panic we witnessed this year (players and coaches). PS If player display these characteristics, its the coach’s fault!
I will use your example, the LSU fake field goal. WHO called the all-out block? INSANE CALL! Kick made (capable kicker, but it would have been at the limit of his range), at worst you are tied. ONE person stays home on play side and kicker never makes a yard. Maybe I missed the explanation by the coach on the sell out angles taken by THREE UF defenders, but I only remember rambling coach-speak. This is a proof to me the staff is broken. One poor decision after another in all phases of the game.
Not only do the players have to be together (which this team was not based on their own words and play), but the staff has to function as well (easier said than done, but staff turn over is not new). The only X factor this year was Coach Meyer’s health and absence. The new staff did not jell and neither did the team. We never got better (observation) the entire season. They did try to fix things, but it was a dysfunctional situation where more bad than good occurs. So that is my theory. It is actually optimistic for the future. If the staff gets it together and then gets the team under control, the Gators will win their fair share of games next year.
Dearest Pat — With so much money from boosters and “friends” of the University on the line (i.e. cash-cow)…my question, what is Foley’s style? In other words, would he bring Oscar into his office throw out suggestions and or axe what’s his “game plan” for changes? Another way of putting it, how much rope does he give Oscar?
Hey junior, how about you eat a big bowl of STFU mixed with a nice helping of GTFO.
How ’bout that?
There wasn’t a game this year where Florida’s offense played above it’s talent level this season.
Last year I thought Tebow and a very talented team, note the rookies having an NFL impact, overcame a lot of what fans thought were opposing defenses playing above their heads.
Something tells me this is the summer Meyer adjusts.
@ Lizardgrad89 (aka daddy) – Please please don’t wash my mouth out w/ soap then send me to bed w/out dinner……….
All good points but what nobody is mentioning is that the offense has gone south since Dan Mullen left and since Mullen was with Urban all along(at BG, Utah and UF), can UM do it without him? The decisions and offenseive game plans this year make me wonder. There were never any half time adjustments, and more often a look of confusion and bewilderment on the sidelines. Had Jordan Reed been at QB from day 1 at spring it could have been a different story this year. And how it took 6 months to figure out that maybe he should be the guy is mind boggling I hope we get the right OC in here but it still starts at the top and i just dont know if Urban can get us back to where we were without his trusted buddy Dan Mullen.And the direction the Miss. St. program is going show he is a big time coach and recruiter who would look very nice in orange and blue again should Urban step aside down the road.
Howard you are dead right! everone should read your comments!
MEYER GAVE AWAY OUR 4TH HEISMAN AND A CHANCE AT MEYBE A 4TH NATIONAL TITLE! IF HE DO NOT SEE THAT J. REED IS A BETER QB THAN BRANLETY, THE FIX IS ON!
LMAO! Thank you SO MUCH for that link to the YouTube video spoofing Steve Addazio’s Offensive philosophy! I had to watch it three times because I was ACTUALLY LOL (laughing out LOUD)!!!
The “Ole/Head Ball Coach” (S.O.S.) was the OC at UF his entire tenure, and he still is at S.Car.. Why doesn’t Urban take the reigns of OC?? I thought the Spread Option was his brainchild?!
It appears, however, that it was Dan Mullen’s all along. He was with Meyer at both Bowling Green and Utah (as OC & QB Coach) before coming with him to UF.
After Mullen left for MSU at the end of the 2008 season, the 2009 Offense was decidedly less productive – undoubtedly saved by Tebow’s sheer talent, determination and will along with a particularly stingy Defense.
It’s been suggested that he, Meyer, has been a shell of the Coach he used to be before he “retired;” that he returned from his Leave of Absence absent,… returned in body, not in spirit.
Is it possible, though, that it could be something FAR worse,… …MIGHT he be an “Empty Suit?!?”
He inherited an under-coached Gator team brimming with talent, then basically “walked into” the soon-to-be ordained “greatest college football player ever” in Tim Tebow, who was NEVER GOING ANYWHERE BUT FLORIDA!
And Percy Harvin – did he “follow” the already legendary Tebow to Florida?? What quality, option oriented, WR/RB speedster wouldn’t want to? And was he part of a Gravy Train?!
Could it be that this was not – GIVING HIM THE BENEFIT OF THE DOUBT (counterintuitively, here) – a stroke of genius on Meyer’s part, but of luck?!? (follow me now). A quirk of temporal fate, if you will, in regards to the proximal “timing” of both their arrivals (Tebow’s and Meyer’s) at UF?! At least with Meyer’s, because Tebow’s was a lock all along! That being true, ANY potentially interested party – such as Meyer – COULD coordinate such “timing” themselves – that is, their availability with Tebow’s arrival – but NOT the job opening itself. Right??? Welllllll,… let’s look at that, shall we?!
NOT GIVING HIM THE BENEFIT OF THE DOUBT, on the other hand, being HC at Utah, it’s certainly not a stretch to assume he’d be aware of a prospect like Tim Tebow, and what Schools he was considering, even favoring.
In THIS scenario, the “fated [?!] quirk of timing” would be the proximity of ZOOK’S FIRING to Tebow’s availability – his recruitment window and subsequent arrival.
When Zook was fired (during Tebow’s Junior year in HS), I remember favoring Butch Davis (I’ve always liked him), who was an applicant for the job. I was disappointed and quite surprised when UF chose Urban Meyer because I hadn’t heard of him, yet Davis had an established, respected and successful record from when he turned UM around in the late ’90’s.
I discovered a short time later, though, and it is most assuredly not a coincidence, that UF’s President at that time was the former President of none other than The University of Utah! VOILA!!!
Obviously, he was in a supreme position to “put in a good word” for the Utah Coach. An understandable bias, mind you,… vindicated LATER, as it turned out, for Urban ultimately led Utah to an eventual 12-0 finish that season. Of course, that level of success in the Utah HC’s second season was neither predictable nor foreseeable, and thus couldn’t have been a factor early-on in the selection process.
Meyer & Mullen were known as the gurus of the Spread Option Offense, manned by eventual #1 NFL pick, QB Alex Smith.
Up and coming HS Spread Option QB phenom, Tim Tebow, already a legend in his own time, obviously would have had EVERYBODY’S attention, particularly Meyer & Mullen, NO DOUBT!!!
They wanted him when they were here (UF), would they not have wanted him to be the heir apparent in Utah?!?!?
There was one insurmountable obstacle though. Tebow was an Orange & Blue blooded Gator through and through, and CLEARLY – even then – Gainesville bound! Anyone who sought him out and researched his “story” – again, even back then – would have known as much. His story – as most now know – was, and is, available to all in video form on YouTube, entitled “The Chosen One” (I believe).
Quite simply, if anyone wanted to coach Tim Tebow in college, they would have known, or strongly expected, that they would HAVE TO BE working or hired as a Coach in the UF Football program. Period!
Being a self proclaimed fan of Gator Football (version S.O.S.), surely Urban knew of Ron Zook’s struggles. Having a kindred spirit in UF’s President, he “COULD” have been privy to insider info..
Why would he be interested in that? Oh, I don’t know,… maybe because a certain 17-18 year old SUPERMAN was coming to town soon, and he, Meyer, MIGHT want to keep tabs on The Zooker’s status!
Why? Well, anyone with a vested interest and EYES TO SEE would easily have discerned an impending opportunity to pursue the HC job at UF, with the added and notable reward to the victor (hiree) of winning the Tebow-sweepstakes by default!!!
Meyer would be in a unique position to possibly “help” the former Utah President and current UF President (at that time; not sure if he’s still there) to “better understand the situation.” Maybe he could even “suggest solutions” to cure the angst of Gator Nation extant at that time, if you catch my drift?!
Conspiracy theorist??? Sure sounds like it, doesn’t it?
The truth is, I don’t know,… BUT, it absolutely COULD have happened, because there WAS potential motive and there WAS definite opportunity! [Where does that leave temptation?!?!?].
That said, I don’t believe any such surmised actions would be illegal or even immoral (ethical might be another thing). In fact, I’d go so far as to say that anyone who were ever to find themselves in the midst of such a harmonious convergence of fortuitous and otherwise benign circumstances would be down-right guilty of sin-of-omission if they were to neglect to utilize such strategically placed assets so obviously arranged by the God of No-Coincidences! [ie: stupido!].
Oh great, now I’m calling Meyer a sinner if he DIDN’T do this! Wait, that’s something we probably CAN agree on – Meyer being a sinner!! We’ve ALL been witness to that ALL season long!!! Haven’t we?!?
Which brings me back to my original question. Are we witnessing the unveiling of a king with no clothes,… we ourselves, however, being the unwitting subjects of such grand delusion?!?!?
…hhmmmm. We’ll have to, you know,… wait till next year (or the following).
If we (Jeremy Foley and Gator Nation) gave Ron Zook 2 & 1/2 years, or so, to “get his act together,” then Coach Meyer, it would seem, having won two BCS Titles, obviously would (should?) receive no less opportunity!
Then again, with the inception of the BC$, the “$TAKE$” (and PRESSURES) are ever higher!
Plus (attention: corny, convoluted mixed-metaphor alert!), Gator Nation has grown accustomed to BEING the 800 lb. gorilla in the (SEC) room. We – like any top-tier-sports FOLLOWING – have LONG since acquired a liking to the sweet FRUIT of consistent VICTORY, so when this (our) beastly sojourner’s palette is deprived of it’s regimen of veritable “trail mix” (victory), expect some nutty “screaming” and “beating of the chest!” [sorry; couldn’t resist!].
Spurrier raised the bar, Meyer upped the ante. Last man standing MUST feed the beast (or throw in the cards)!! [dittos!].
HOW long Gator Nation’s, Jeremy Foley’s, and Urban Meyer’s BP’s (blood pressure AND breaking point) can be maintained remains to be seen? Only TWT.
PS: In the end, this “empty suit” theory may be without merit (Time Will Tell,… hopefully sooner than later), but consider that such a scenario is not entirely without precedent.
While not an exact parallel, recall UM’s Larry Coker. A REALLY nice guy, but… well,… let’s just say he too “walked into” good fortune (extant talent – players & perhaps staff), which eventually ran out!
Someone might bring the Zookster to remembrance also – another REALLY nice guy. He “walked into” a fortunate situation himself, perhaps merely lacking, however, HIS “Dan Mullen!”
And it’s too early for the jury to return a verdict on Gene Chizik, whose hiring prompted criticism of Auburn’s Athletic administration, but who now are looking like football geniuses! He CERTAINLY finds himself in a MOST FORTUITOUS situation, as well!
Does HE have a “Dan Mullen,” though?
… IS he a “Dan Mullen?”
For now, however, any latent need HE might otherwise have for his very own “Dan Mullen” is easily being more than compensated for by HIS very own “Tim Tebow, II,” in the person of none other than Cam Newton!” AKA: “Superman, No. 2.”
Just wanted to say “thanx” for the superior and accurate indepth reporting this year. I have cleared many of the “other” websites because I have cautiously and very carefully developed a level of trust with yo ur reporting.
I feel you accurately report the facts – honestly and with great integrity – and you don’t necessarily sugar coat – your comments regarding the awesome Florida Gators. I haven’t once read you stating about having Urban’s personal email address or being on his “speed dial” because you allow him to preview and ‘adjust’ your comments about a game or situation involving the football program.
Keep up the great job and I’ll stay with you as an ardent fan! Cheers! GO GATORS!