The Picks: Yeah, there are annoying things about college football

Florida legend Steve Spurrier, the UF Athletics Ambassador, Heisman Trophy-winning player and national champion coach, may be showing Gainesville Sun sports columnist Pat Dooley the secrets to producing winning plays. Hopefully, the HBC coached up Dooley in making better predictions this season. [Matt Stamey/Gainesville Sun/File]

It’s not really fair.

I looked forward to doing The Picks columns all summer and then the first time I get to write one there are only two games and one of them wouldn’t make The Picks in any month with an “R” in it.

So this week we’re going to add three Thursday games from next week to flesh it out because normally I don’t pick the Thursday games because the column runs on Fridays and have you fallen asleep yet?

Before we get to the first Picks of the season, a little entertainment. At my many speaking stops, I have delivered a list of the 10 most annoying things about college football.

I tried it out in Destin, Gainesville, Eustis and a variety of other places, honing each reveal the way Jerry Seinfeld tries his acts out at clubs before a Netflix special.

Finally, it is ready for print. (Seriously, don’t get your hopes up because it’s not THAT good).


1. People who complain that there are too many bowl games. You have a remote. Watch Wheel of Fortune. Who cares that there is a Tony The Tiger Bowl this season? How is that hurting you? Bowls are for the players, ESPN and the communities. Calm down.

2. Traffic. In the SEC, it just means more … times watching a light turn green, then yellow, then red without your car moving. Most college campuses don’t have the infrastructure to handle 80,000 people. Especially in this conference. I’m looking at you Auburn.

3. Watch Lists. Shouldn’t we, as voters, be watching everyone? Why do we need a list of players to consider? I smell collusion.

4. Week Zero. Nope. Hate it. I’m going with a reader’s suggestion of Week Zulu, which is a military expression and sounds so much sexier.

5. People who think NFL overtime is better than college. Stop it. You’re embarrassing yourselves. You have ties. Case closed.

6. Guest pickers on GameDay. Okay?

7. Injuries. Hate ’em. Hate what the player is going through and his family. I do love the comeback stories though.

8. Fake news on social media. Last week I saw on Twitter that Ohio State had named Gunnar Hoak as the starter. It was a fake. Legendary NFL writer Peter King got fooled by a fake account last week. It happens but what really stinks are coaching searches. Be prepared for stories that Urban Meyer was seen shopping for houses in Los Angeles. Or South Bend. Or Auburn. Or (gulp) Tallahassee.

9. Celebrities in the booth while the game is going on. The last interesting one was John Lennon on Monday Night Football.

10. UCF.

OK, on the The Picks. Like every team in America, I’m 0-0.

FLORIDA-MIAMI: It’s really pretty simple. Florida has a better team, will likely have more fans in the stands and is brimming with confidence that comes with the knowledge of the way things need to be done. This is an excellent Miami defense, but I can’t wait to see what Florida throws at the ’Canes. Florida, 24-10.

ARIZONA AT HAWAII: I am a big fan of Hawaii’s quarterback Cole McDonald. Also, if I pick enough Hawaii games maybe they’ll invite me to speak at their football banquet. Hawaii, 42-37.

Next Thursday games.

UCLA AT CINCINNATI: Chip Kelly went 3-9 last year. There’s a decent chance he’ll start 0-3 this year. Good times. Cincy, 34-21.

GEORGIA TECH AT CLEMSON: Over and over again, new Tech coach Geoff Collins is going to be repeating to himself, “This is as bad as it’s going to get. This is as bad as it’s going to get.” Clemson, 54-21.

UTAH AT BYU: I worry that BYU students may be looking ahead to next week’s game when they travel to Knoxville where beer will be sold in the stands. The humanity. Utah, 35-19.

(On a side note, Florida’s opponent after the open date — Tennessee-Martin — plays Thursday night against Northwestern State, but I’ll leave that one alone).

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


    • Vickie at The Sun emailed me to say that “Our website has been subscription based for quite a while now.” But I only hit the pay wall at about 2 AM after decades of free reading.

      I understand the revenue problem, and yeah, I bought the season pass.

      But starting it on the eve of the season felt like a cheap move – at least they could’ve admitted it.

  1. My late brother in law was recruited by BYU back in the LaVelle Edwards era. The problem was he wasn’t LDS. When he was thrown off the team in his Freshman year, Edwards told him, “We might put up with your kind of behavior if you were a quarterback, but we won’t tolerate it from an offensive lineman.” He was a great guy, an excellent Ruby player, and an aggressive white water rafter for which he ultimately paid a price. He had a pithy comment on BYU coeds, which I cannot repeat here.

  2. I wholeheartedly agree with #10. In fact, it is 10, 11, 12,… As far as guests in the booth while the game is going on, another solid one. If we cared about who was in the booth, we wouldn’t be watching the game!

    As far as the game, the key is the offensive line. Protect Franks and give the backs some holes and Florida’s offense will keep M’s defense on the field. I am a little less optimistic about our defense. We are still rebuilding at linebacker and our front is thin. If their ground game gets going, the pressure on the offense grows. Even still, I am going with Florida as coaching and our receiving core will make the difference. Gators 27-17. Go Gators!