Sunday Blog: After Saturday’s results, Gators’ win looks even better

Florida coach Dan Mullen leads his team onto the field to open the Camping World Kickoff against the Miami Hurricanes at Camping World Stadium in Orlando on August 24, 2019. The Florida Gators beat the Miami Hurricanes 24-20. [Brad McClenny/The Gainesville Sun]

The Sunday Blog comes at you after driving home from a visit with my Dad in St. Augustine and watching an endless parade of power trucks heading the other way:

  1. I’m not going to say Auburn saved the day for the SEC, but it could have been worse if the Tigers didn’t pull out a last-second win over Oregon. Maybe we need to go back and look at Florida actually winning its opener against a Power Five rival and pat the boys on the back. As a whole, the SEC smelled on ice in Week 1. I guess we can all hop off that Missouri bandwagon now. We forgot Mizzou never plays well until November.
  2. Then we have Florida State, which had the advantage of hosting a game that was supposed to be at a neutral site and still managed to blow an 18-point lead. Boise State had 38 first downs and ran 108 plays while limiting FSU to 68 second-half yards and no points. You can’t blame this one on Jimbo Fisher. The Seminoles are now 12-14 in their last 26 games.
  3. Meanwhile, Florida’s opponent on Sept. 21 was manhandled by a team that won two games last year. It was no accident. Georgia State outplayed Tennessee on Saturday and the Vols looked soft on defense. How that team beat Auburn on the Plains last year is still a mystery.
  4. It was a glorious day because football was officially back and I watched 12 straight hours with my 92-year-old father. He loved every minute of it, but I have to school him up on his flipping technique. He kept checking in on the hurricane. I brought him barbecue for lunch from a roadside stop east of Hastings and we had dinner brought in by my niece, Destin, so my rear is a little numb today. But, man, it’s good to have you back college football.


  1. I watched Georgia State football (founded in 2010) embarrass the Vols and their checker board squares. It didn’t take a seasoned college football fan to see the Panthers wanted it more, and then their coach rubbed the salt in the locker room, saying It Just Means More “to us” in the post game locker room. Vol fans crawled out the their stadium and began the long trek toward the Alamo.

    Arguably the most disturbing sight yesterday was all the UGA fans at the Vandy game. Vanderbilt’s QB actually had to go to a silent count on their home field. Ugh!-A

    Can never get enough of fsu losing, especially ugly and at home.

    Oregon-Auburn was good stuff.

    • Agree, SHP. Always enjoy a good FSU implosion! I was on here last night looking for someone to celebrate with like Jim Valvano looking for somebody to hug!

      UT looked like they thought they were gonna win just because they were the mighty Vols. They had no sense of urgency at any time; even in crunch time it was like they didn’t think they could possibly lose. I usually hate to accuse players of having no heart or desire, but that’s what it looked like.

      Btw, are you just using your 5 free articles, since it’s a new month?

      • Living on a prayer with a hacker’s cough. Day at a time. Papers used to be a nickle because the money was made in ad sales, when men could sell back in the day.

        Charging us to use this site is truly a reflection on the Sunless sales staff.

        Remember WKRP in Cincinnati?

        Herb: You know what we call problems in sales? We call them opportunities.
        Mr. Hopkins: Les, your friend is a twit.

      • If we dissidents, who oppose the official G’ville Sun’s new pay to read and post comments policy on a website designed for recreational reading and responding, and refuse to pick up the slack of their sales department (or lack thereof because of cuts) by paying a fee to continue posting here since some of us have been doing since around 2002, want to protest said new pay policy, then we keep posting long threads on the five articles as if it were on a forum. We only need to specify which current articles we are addressing.

        Dang, I feel like I’m organizing a union. Must be because I’m reading “The Given Day” by Dennis Lehane. Clearly, it is keeping me up at night. That and deciding how to punctuate my Faulkner paragraph above.

  2. Oh boo-hoo. The semi-holes blew an 18 pt. lead vs. Boise St. and LOST at the Doak. Whole’ fans on the chat site are screaming for Willie’s head. Why don’t they scream for better players and assistants? Couldn’t happen to a nicer team. LOL.

  3. Agree on the Miami anti-loss looking better. The game reminded me of the old polite squirrels cartoon from years ago. “You take the win.” No, no, we insist- you take the win. We couldn’t! You must! It was a battle of wills to see who wanted to win the least.

    Still, a win is a win, and as the announcers said, as the season progresses no one will remember that we played terrible. I consider it a good sign we played so bad and yet still won, though it shocked me anyone watched that game and concluded Miami was a good team. A good team would have won that game. Miami sucks. But, a win is a win, and hopefully, our guys will learn from that performance and not play with fire again this season.

    When I saw Pat picked Mushy Mush to out-coach a feeble geezer who hasn’t coached in years, I laughed out loud. Of course, Mushy failed again, perfectly, to say the least as the Wall of Mush defense allowed two drives of over 90 yards in the second half, all while Mush stood on the sidelines, mouth hanging open, with that same stupified look on his face he always gets as his garbage coaching leads to another collapse.

    Of course, after the game he blamed the players, saying he was going to look at “every position.” When a reporter asked him about his claims this was his best team he replied, “I was wrong.” Sorry Mushy. The problem is YOU!

    As for the Volies– give Pruett a contract extension now! The NFL is going to be coming for him, and football genius Paul Finebaum says Pruett is the leader to replace Saban at Bama– you have found your savior, Vols. Don’t lose him! Big Raise and Extension. NOW!

    The Nolies collapse was too perfect. Taggert sounded pathetic after the game, begging fans not to give up on him. Hahaha. I agree. Another coach who deserves a huge extension and a raise! Lifetime contract Nolies! Don’t mess this up!

    • I also heard an oldie but a goody from the UNC-USCe commentators, when the ‘Cocks were up 20-9: “Muschamp has gone conservative on offense, probably too soon to be doing that.” I can hear ‘Champless now, “Let’s pound the rock!” Then that look you saw on his face was him thinking of pounding something else.

      • LOL! I missed that comment, but they could have a robot there programmed to say that in any game Mushy gets a lead. He’ll never learn! What is he thinking? “Every time I shut it down I end up losing, so that means… uh….. um… THIS time it will work! Fullback plunges forever!!!!!!” Or maybe he gets his second half play calls from Son of Dooley.

        Classic line: “Then that look you saw on his face was him thinking of pounding something else.”

    • Jaws great assessment and humorous as usual. Muschamp screwed the pooch and blew a w. FSU did as well zero points in second half I believe.
      UT played without heart and didn’t appear to think they could be beat. Sucks on rocky top.
      As for UM. They have a lot of talent but new coach. They were not as good but played better than expected because they knew the history. Our team was overwhelmed with the history and put too much pressure on themselves and players too tight. I’d expect them to gel and get their sh.t together by next weekend.

      • Based on all the young guys their coach went with over more experienced players, I almost feel like Miami’s coach is actually building for next year. We’ll see. I do believe they always have talent down there, but they do not yet have a team.

        I agree that our team put too much pressure on themselves. There was too much talk about it being some kind of game of the century. I believe in the old coach’s saying, “A billion people in China don’t care.”

      • Is there a better encapsulation of bad coaching than the Noles next possession after Boise St scored to make it a 2-point game? This is a Noles team with a top-5 in the country RB, by the way. They come out and on first down chuck a deep bomb. And miss. Second and 10. Again, deep bomb .. and miss. Third and 10. Now they have to stretch the field, which of course BSU knows. Blackmon drops back, scrambles from the pressure, and … is sacked. Punt.

        They went down by TWO! Disheartening after having a big lead, sure, but they were still winning. Pound the ball with your RB. Run some screens. Anything just to move the sticks and get the momentum back. Don’t just chuck it down the field with a hope and a prayer.

  4. Ugly wins always look a lot better in the mirror. After last season we were all proud of the 10 wins, even though after several games we were all grumbling because we looked so bad winning. Just win baby!! It was great seeing the inside the sec special on the Miami game. Mullen simply knows how to win. Go Gators!!!

  5. Is Fulmer the real underlying problem at UT? Hummmm! Pat, why didn’t you mention your ole bud Moosechamp or Ole Mack Brown? He he he… UGA appeared solid against Vandy, just a tune-up…same for Bama. I always thought Semi-holes were just one coach away from going back to the Pre-Bowden era…it has happen! Good thing they had their band in the stands or else there would have been no fans in the stadium….this has been a fun and informative week One.

    We, Coach Dan, need to take advantage of our early UM win. Its now like we get a free re-start to the whole season, mentally. A cup cake for a scrimmage then should win at UK and home UT, before we play the real talent.

  6. We still have a ways to go in order to beat the likes of LSU, UGA who looked extremely impressive. I think we will know what kind of team we have when Auburn comes to town. For most of the game Auburn didn’t look very good, credit Oregon, but like us, Auburn found a way to win. I’m afraid, if we have to play catch up to the likes of LSU and UGA, I do not think Franks is up to the challenge. They will limit his running ability and force him to be a passer and from what I’ve seen, he is late with his reads, often focuses on primary receiver and is easily flushed from the pocket. Far too often wide open receivers are overlooked. I believe the east comes down to UF and UGA, which means we will really have to up our game.

    • Take heart, JohnP. There’s time for improvement before playing LSU and UGA. I agree that Franks needs to improve, but he did that throughout the course of last season, and none other than Shane Matthews thinks he’s continuing to improve. If you haven’t heard Shane, you can listen to him on Steve Russell’s noon show on WRUF AM850. If you’re not local you can use the Tune-In Radio app (free) to listen on your phone or laptop. For those who disagree with his assessment, Shane is gracious in admitting everyone has a right to their own opinion, but he will also remind them that watching film of QB’s is what he does. Given that he has the same high expectations as his mentor, the HBC, I think it’s encouraging that Shane says Franks is improving. He’s not saying Franks is All-SEC caliber, merely that he’s improving.

      It sure looks for now like you’re right about the East being a two-way race between UF and UGA. Also think you’re right that for UF to challenge UGA, the Gators must improve, particularly Franks and the young OL. Every time I watch UGA it seems their OL is always pushing the pile until the whistle in order to help their backs gain extra yards. Our young OL guys seem to become spectators when the defender sheds their block. I’m sure Coach Hevesy is working on that, though, and hopefully they’ll be ready to make the games in Baton Rouge and Jax competitive. Go Gators!

  7. Agree with Pat and glad to see Auburn win to save the day. Otherwise our strength of schedule would have taken a nosedive. Well, it’s less of a nosedive than if they had lost in addition to FSU, UT, USC, and Mizzou.

  8. God Almighty, Jaws and Phil reunited in prose, Cattrick, Sparky, Joe Shiver, DeWayne-from-old aka BSCE, Gator65 like he never left, and the irreplaceable Sly Sylvester and even JohnP…….all on one string? Too much for these old eyes to bear! And what a hell of a time to have nothing to say!! Say it ain’t so!!

  9. The thing about teams like Tennessee that have an extended slump is that they play like it is 20 years ago. Each season is its own. Nobody can say “well we won a championship 12 years ago so we should handle everybody on this season’s schedule” We went through that after Spurrier and again after Meyer. We showed against Miami that if you just show up, that is all that happens. Guys standing on a field wearing jerseys. You have to actually play and play lights out if you want to make something happen let alone win.

    As far as the SEC losses, everybody in the east except for KY, GA, and Florida lost. Only Ole Miss lost in the west. Some of it was the competition, some of it is because everybody in the west is chasing ‘Bama. It bodes well for our east schedule but we need to take the game 1 to game 2 leap and come out the rest of the season on fire. Seize the moment and the momentum by stomping on teams when they are down. Go Gators! ps. no cancelled games due to hurricanes! We have had enough of hurricanes for a season! wait until 2024!

      • Exactly right SHP more passion and heart. We had that last year and I hope we continue with that and the additional time with our coaching staff. That passion has to be there every game or someone will take the opportunity to do the unexpected.