Daily Archives: October 23, 2017

Kirby Smart’s next test

These are the nagging little reasons my heart doesn’t want to listen to my head tell it why the spread for the Cocktail Party is reasonable:

Out of 14 opportunities, Florida has three wins in program history in the series when the Bulldogs were ranked and the Gators were unranked. First it was a 31-19 win in 1986 under Galen Hall. Then it was a 20-13 win in 2002 under Ron Zook.

And then there was 2014. The unranked Gators were 3-3 on the season, getting ready to face the then-No. 8 Bulldogs in Will Muschamp’s final season.

The season already seemed over. Just two weeks earlier, as the Gators walked out of The Swamp following a 42-13 homecoming loss to Missouri, chants of “Fire Muschamp” echoed through the stadium.

But when the Gators made their way over the Hart Bridge and into Everbank Field in Jacksonville, a team with a seemingly newfound life surfaced. Florida rushed for 418 yards, scored 31 unanswered points at one point in the game and walked away with a 38-20 victory that brought morale back to the team if only for a couple weeks.

That’s the type of echoing statement the Gators hope to make on Saturday.

Okay, it hasn’t happened too often, but when it has, it’s left skid marks on my psyche that still haven’t faded away.

If Notre Dame was a great win that’s turned out to mean much more in the aftermath than it seemed to at the time and Tennessee was the game that convinced me Georgia was embarked upon a special season, Florida has the potential to be the moment when culture change went from talk to reality.

On paper, the Dawgs should roll Saturday.  But the intangibles favor Florida purely on history.  It’s well past time for some demons to be exorcised.  My head and heart are hoping Kirby Smart is just the coach to do that.

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Filed under Georgia Football

Flipping the script

The thing about this “Florida 5 Keys” piece isn’t that it’s wrong — running the ball and stopping the run have pretty much decided the Cocktail Party winner since I’ve been going to Jacksonville — it’s that it’s so damned wistful.

If they remain committed to the young QB, then they must think there is more he can do than what he’s shown. Whatever they’ve tried to this point isn’t working. Hopefully the two weeks between games was enough to add in some new looks, some more plays Franks is comfortable with and within which he’s able to cycle through the progressions.

Something. Anything.

Florida doesn’t win this game without its best QB performance of the season.

Taken as a whole, it reminds me of how we sounded circa 2009.  The Gators aren’t supposed to make their fans feel like that.

Even eerier,

Injuries and suspensions have ravaged Florida in Jim McElwain’s third season as coach, leaving its roster far closer to the 63 scholarship players allowed in the Championship Subdivision level compared to the 85 that Bowl Subdivision programs can possess.

Again, they’re not supposed to be the guys with roster management problems.  That’s Georgia’s patented issue.

Next thing you know, they’ll be talking about the Florida Way.

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Filed under Gators, Gators..., Georgia Football

SEC Power Poll, Week 8

secpowerpoll2008_medium

Five teams having byes probably had a lot to do with it, but this might have been the most uneventful weekend of the season.  This week’s standings reflect that.

That being said, the bottom of the conference may be as bad as I’ve ever seen it.

  1. Alabama.  PAWWWLLL, THEY LET TENURSEE SCORE!!! WUTS THE MATTER WITH NICK SABAN???
  2. Georgia.  Georgia is the only team in the SEC that has beaten a team currently ranked in the top ten.
  3. Auburn.  The Tigers have kicked the shit out of four conference opponents that have a combined SEC record of 3-13.  Let’s see how they do with their last three that have a combined conference record of 12-1.
  4. Texas A&M.  With their next games against Mississippi State and Auburn, the Aggies will have a chance to prove they deserve to rank in the upper part of the conference.
  5. LSU.  This is a very talented team that isn’t very well coached.  They’ve got a bye week before ‘Bama, and they’ll need it.
  6. Mississippi State.  The Bulldogs have lost two conference games by 28 and 39 points and won two conference games by 30 and 38 points.
  7. Florida.  Who’da thunk the Gators’ meeting with FSU might turn out to be a fight over bowl eligibility?
  8. South Carolina.  The ‘Cocks still have divisional title dreams.
  9. Kentucky.  No longer America’s ugliest one-loss team.
  10. Ole Miss.  I’ve left Mississippi here for now as the only team in the bottom five with a conference win.  Losing Patterson for the rest of the season likely means there won’t be any more.
  11. Missouri.  The Tigers scored 68 points against a FBS team.  Tennessee has scored 137 points all season.
  12. Tennessee.  Vol football is like an unfolding car wreck.  You shouldn’t watch, but you can’t turn your eyes away.
  13. Vanderbilt.  As bad as the bottom of the conference is, with Vandy finishing against Kentucky, Missouri and Tennessee, they’ve got a chance to win a game, maybe two.
  14. Arkansas.  Bert’s boys flat-out quit against Auburn.  The season finale against Missouri ought to be epic.

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Musical palate cleanser, I just went on and tol’ her edition

A couple of you caught the musical reference in a header from last week, so I thought I’d share the song, R.L. Burnside’s “It’s Bad You Know”.  It’s one of those songs that’s hard to get out of your head once you’ve heard it.

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Fabris Pool results, Week 8

Another week, another tiebreaker.

Screenshot-2017-10-23 Fun Office Pools

Congrats to BosnianDawg.

As for the season, the race is still tight.

Screenshot-2017-10-23 Fun Office Pools(1)

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Filed under GTP Stuff