The Sunday Blog, Week III


Man, I get what the guys who cover baseball feel during a season. Just going on the road for two straight weekends has me worn out.

But certainly these two road trips were filled with fun, especially for the Gator fans who made the trips. Knoxville, and I can’t stress this enough, is absolutely stunned this morning as I write this that Florida whipped their Vols.

What is set up this weekend is the perfect Saturday — get done early and hit the Dooley Dome for some great games and salmon burgers. At least that’s the plan.


1. Alabama: There are beatdowns and then there are beatdowns.

2. LSU: Next up for the Tigers — the struggling Chi-Zooks.

3. Oregon: It will be nice to see the Ducks play a real team eventually.

4. Oklahoma: Sooners had the door creep open a bit with USC loss.

5. Georgia: Dogs recovered from a slow start against a bad team.

6. West Virginia: Geno Smith has a real shot at the Heisman Trophy.

7. FSU: We’ll know a lot more about the Semis this week.

8. South Carolina: Congrats to the head ball coach for his 200th win.

9. Clemson: Don’t like the defense, but love the offense.

10. Ohio State: I don’t think this will last, but Urban Meyer finds a way to win.

11. Notre Dame: The Irish may not be back but they are closer than they’ve been in awhile.

12. Kansas State: A struggle for a bit, but Wildcats keep winning.

13. Texas: Longhorns were unstoppable vs. Ole Miss.

14. Stanford: Tennessee fans love Stanford this week.

15. Florida: Really impressive start for the mighty Gators.

16. Arizona: Suddenly, winning the Pac-12 looks realistic.

17. USC: Is this a pattern with the Lane Kiffin Trojans, to lose a game that surprises you?

18. UCLA: Give Jim Mora a lot of credit.

19. Louisville: Charlie Strong get a little tight late on Saturday?

20. Oregon State: Again, why not?

21. Michigan State: Yikes, my national title game pick is in the toilet.

22. Oklahoma State: Cowboys bounced back nicely.

23. Virginia Tech: I can’t explain that loss to the Panthers.

24. Tennessee: Vols’ defense will be an issue all year.

25. Michigan: Wolverines have yet to show me a lot.


1. It was interesting to hear Will Muschamp mock his decision to try a fake punt, but it actually was a good call that would have worked if Matt Elam hadn’t stumbled. The key, as Muschamp pointed out, was that Florida held Tennessee to a three-and-out after the fake punt. I don’t want to jinx Muschamp, but after watching those dropped Tennessee passes I think the Zookluck is off him.

2. The next time GameDay wants to go to Knoxville, the people at Tennessee might want to borrow a line from Lee Corso. “Not so fast, my friend.” UT is now 2-6 when ESPN comes to town with its traveling talking heads. After watching the Vols up close, I think they are better than they were a year ago. But they still have issues on defense, especially in the speed department, and if you can make them one-dimensional and put some heat on Tyler Bray he struggles.

3. There has to be some major heat on Kentucky’s Joker Phillips, who is 0-2 against the state this season. You have to think that Kentucky is looking at a three or four-win season at best. I wonder if Kentucky might want to act quickly — say midway through the season — so it can have a head start on Bobby Petrino.

4. I don’t care who is injured, a former top-10 team cannot lose to anybody 52-0. Arkansas is embarrassed and it’s pretty obvious that John L. Smith is not the answer to any questions unless they involve bankruptcy. This could end up as ugly as that Alabama 2000 season when Mike Dubose was talking national title and ended up 3-8. Except Arky at least has some excuses.


  1. I am surprised UF isn’t ranked higher, but the Gators will have ample opportunity in the weeks ahead. FSU’s schedule is a crime that includes a free ticket to the National Title game, unless UF can spoil the party at taxpayer supported Joke Shambles Stadium.

  2. I, too, WISH COACH SPURRIER, “CONGRATS’ for 200!
    And, I hope Corso keeps on picking FLORIDA, he’s 0-2! …LOL! And, L.S.U.’s schedule is SO WEAK, until they play FLORIDA! So, it’s a good thing the Gators have essetnially 3 weeks to prepare, sorry, Joker! And BIG BLUE, this ain’t Basketball, and lately that’s all the Wildcats are good at anymore!

  3. I know your poll mirrors the AP and coaches’ polls, Pat, but tell me, what exactly has Ohio State done to merit top 10? Has Ohio State, or for that matter, a number of teams ranked ahead of UF, done anything yet as impressive as UF the past 2 weeks?
    Obviously these are “power rankings”, and not indicative of anything EARNED.

  4. Thanks Dooley for the coverage. Why do you always start your sarcastic judgements with phrases like “Not to take anything away from so and so but…” lol. Its the funniest thing ever. Even in your blog “I don’t want to jinx Muschamp, but after watching those dropped Tennessee passes I think the Zookluck is off him.” Come on dude stop.

  5. Pat – tell us more about how Knoxville was stunned. They are typically nice folks, but I’m always amazed at how football-unsavy they are as a fan base. That’s the best way I can describe it. And your comments about them intending to “storm the field” – as incredible as that is, is not surprising. It’s as if they just joined the league.

  6. The rankings will never make any sense until everyone is weeded out come end of the season. Florida, I believe, is the only major school to have played, and won, 2 conference games already, with both on the road, and they are only #14? Like they say, just keep winning and the ranking will take care of itself.

  7. Tennessee fans are a hoot and a half. They acted like the team with a 7 game win streak rather than a 7 game losing streak. They really seem to think these are still Neyland’s Vols.
    Their hometown paper has a blog that allowed fans to predict the winner, it was across the board blowout win for the Vols, average prediction was, oh, 35-17. The Knoxville police actually issued a statement that anyone running onto the field after the game would be arrested. After the game, the same fans were calling for Dooley’s head and saying Bray was worthless.
    Yes I admit, seeing their angst after their arrogance gave me that warm fuzzy feeling inside.

  8. No matter how bad Notre Dame is every year you can be sure that if they start the season 3-0 they are guaranteed to jump in the polls just because people want them to be good.

    Also, Florida easily beat Ohio State at the end of last year, had a better recruiting class coming in, lost almost nothing from last year, and has played tougher games and looked better than Ohio State up to this point. People are voting them so high only because Urban Meyer is there.

    Before last week I would have made a joke about Virginia Tech being ranked in the top 15 and how they will manage to show that they are really bad at some point but they did it even sooner than I thought.

    The new Virginia Tech is West Virginia. There are about 20 teams every year that could get 10 or 11 wins with that schedule and probably 5-10 that would go undefeated with their schedule. We all know that they will lose their 1 tough game and will lay an egg against somebody terrible but will somehow manage to keep a top 10 ranking all year for beating nobodies.

    Here are the top 25 rules for every year:

    Vote traditional football powerhouses (USC, Ohio State, Michigan) high regardless of how bad they were the season before.

    As soon as Notre Dame wins a game vote them high.

    Vote Virginia Tech high until they lose to a div 2 school.

    Vote West Virginia high because they are guaranteed 10 wins every year wiith their terrible schedule.

    Vote FSU into the top 15 no matter what and if they beat Florida the year before top 8 regardless of how bad Florida is and how bad the ACC is.

    Vote 1 big 12 team way too high (KSU) and 1 big Ten team way too high (Michigan state… oops nevermind) so that it makes Ohio State and Oklahoma look like they have a respectable schedule.

    Fill in the rest of the top 25 with 2 or 3 teams from each conference so it looks balanced even though its obvious that TCU, Louisville, Arizona, Etc. wouldn’t win even half of their games in the SEC.

  9. Pat,
    O Ye of little Faith!
    How could you predict a Gator loss over the Vols? Unthinkable!
    Okay, we forgive you, just get back under the tent this week and let’s all enjoy the wuppin over Kentucky in the Swamp.
    Let’s bring the thunder this week Gator fans. Your team deserves it after two huge road victories.
    Driskel is the real deal. Watch him grow and take the Heisman in two years.
    Lakeland GatorNaught

  10. Everything Muschamp said from the start is right on. The toughness on this team is the best I’ve seen anywhere. You just don’t do this as well as they have done on the road in a hostile environment and not be tough. Kudos to the Vol fans as well for being gracious in defeat despite their optimism on beating the dreaded Gators.

  11. Well,well,well Tenn Vols fans.I am from Knoxville,born there but have never been a Vols fan.Gators fan from 1977 while in the USMC.I have listen to family for so long tell me about how good they(Vols) are and what they are going to do to FlORIDA next time we came to Knoxville.Well it didn’t happen and those colors are hideious by the way.Big Orange my foot,how about Big O as in no wins this year.As before Tenn fans let’s hear your smack “Wait till next year!!!!” Yep that is the one you say all the time.Next year you have to travel so pack a lunch guys it’s going to be a long day in Gainesville,baby!!!!!

  12. Pat,

    If following Gator sports is wearing you out, maybe you should retire and let me take your job. I’d love to get paid to watch tons of sporting events and write about it! Maybe you’d prefer something more laid-back, like being deployed overseas?

    I usually enjoy your work, but complaining about the difficult life you lead is annoying.

  13. I’m a newcomer to Dooley’s Desk, but if this is the heat you take after a big Gator win, I’d hate to see what your ‘fans’ would do to you after (fill in game here: 2011 Auburn, ‘Bama, LSU, Georgia, etc.). But as a Sun vet from the Hairston, Tyler, Bianchi eras, I always enjoy ‘feeling your pain’. Should be a fun year…Can you say ‘1969’?