“Enjoy this, Georgia,” I wrote. “Savor this second consecutive victory over the Florida Gators. Relish your clear superiority over your rivals during Saturday’s 36-17 victory in the World’s Largest Outdoor Talent Discrepancy Party. Every Dog has its day. But your Dog days aren’t going to last as long as you once thought. In less than a season, new Gator coach Dan Mullen has at least put some chomp back in this rivalry after taking over a doomed, done-for, dysfunctional program that completely quit on former coach Jim McElwain during last year’s 42-7 loss to the Bulldogs.
“Cherish the 19-point victory, Georgia. Embrace it. Appreciate it. With Dan the Man in charge, you’re not going to be Dogging the Gators like this for very much longer.”
That was then. Now, Mike Bianchi has a bone to pick with Dan Mullen.
So much for those of us who thought Mullen’s offensive imagination would come up with a game plan to at least keep the game close on Saturday against Georgia’s dominant, dynamic defense. Instead, Mullen’s Gators got a bad case of rope burn in the World’s Largest Outdoor Tug of War Party on the banks of the St. Johns River.
“The rope is slipping right now in this rope pull,” Mullen admitted about his program. “As the rope slips, you can either drop it or grab tight, hold on, dig in your heels and start pulling in the other direction. Dropping the rope doesn’t fix anything. What fixes it is grasping the rope, holding on and squeezing as it’s burning. … We’re not where we want to be, and it’s s on me to get it fixed.”
This performance was embarrassing and exasperating for Florida fans, who watched the Gators get out-played, out-coached and out-talented by the No. 1-ranked Georgia Bulldogs, whose fierce defense turned UF’s previous sensational backup quarterback Anthony Richardson into the confused, discombobulated freshman quarterback that he truly is.
He’s trying to keep the torch burning…
I still believe Mullen is one of the top coaches in the game, but as the great Bill Parcells once said, “You are what your record says you are.”
Pesky things, those records.