Category Archives: Gators, Gators…

TFW you didn’t use the NFL to leverage your job security

Promises, promises…

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There’s a reason they call him The Portal Master™.

Florida may not have done so well with its 2021 recruiting class (although, to be fair, it’s not bad, either), but the Gators cleaned up on the transfer front.

The Florida Gators are the runaway winner of the transfer portal for 2021 according to the 247Sports ratings. Florida signed the top two rated players the entire portal and also added important depth on the interior defensive line. Tight end Arik Gilbert was one of the best in the SEC as a true freshman for LSU in 2020 and will be expected to step in and start in the role vacated by Florida tight end Kyle Pitts, who is off to the NFL Draft. Gilbert received a rating of 99 in high school and keeps that lofty rating here. The odds are good of Gilbert being a rare transfer non-QB being drafted in the first round.

Running back Demarkcus Bowman was also a five star in high school and keeps his rating after transferring a few weeks into his freshman season at Clemson. The ratings team believes his ability is unchanged. Penn State defensive tackle transfer Antonio Shelton received a grade of 87 and is expected to start for the Gators, while Auburn defensive tackle Daquan Newkirk was graded an 81. The ratings team expects Newkirk to provide good depth.

As Dirty Harry once said, a man’s gotta know his limitations.

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Heavy Gator

Siri, how much does a d-line project weigh?

If this recruiting profile is to be believed, he’s still a growing boy.

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Same as it ever was

From The Athletic’s look at Florida’s defense ($$):

If you tried patching all the holes in Florida’s defense last season, the spackle aisle at Lowe’s might need to be restocked.

The damage inflicted, and self-inflicted, gave Todd Grantham’s unit the appearance of mayhem and disorganization, surrendering 30.8 points per game, which represented 1) the worst in program history; 2) nearly double what the 2019 defense allowed; and 3) cause to harangue one of college football’s highest-paid coordinators.

Grantham’s 30-year résumé provides the cachet to survive a terrible season, even one in which the Gators slipped into the bottom half of the FBS in third-down percentage (72nd), yards allowed per play (85th), yards per pass attempt (88th) and pass-efficiency defense (96th). Now comes the offseason retooling to make sure there isn’t a repeat.

Coach Dan Mullen and Grantham, having evaluated the pre-snap chaos that led to misalignments, are revisiting communication methods.

“Do we get the calls in in time? Do we get the calls made to the defense on the field in time?” Mullen said this week. “If the guys make the call, then do we make the formational adjustment in time when you’re seeing no-huddle. Part of it is a little sense of urgency issue.

Dude, poor communication is Grantham’s 30-year résumé.

If I had a dollar for every time a Grantham-coached player looked befuddled before the snap, I’d be a wealthy man.  In other words, Dan, good luck getting that fixed this offseason.  Maybe Towel Boy can offer a few choice suggestions.

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“A lot of rumors out there, but I didn’t speak to anybody.”

Regrets?  The Portal Master™ has a few.

He was chided for comments about wanting to “pack the Swamp” following a loss to Texas A&M and cram 90,000 fans into Florida Field during a public health crisis.

He also stumbled after losing to Oklahoma in the Cotton Bowl, insisting the last outing for Florida’s 2020 team actually came in the SEC title game. The Gators were without their top four receivers and three defensive starters against the Sooners, and Mullen praised the effort of his “scout team players,” comments that were viewed as detracting from Oklahoma’s victory.

“There are probably some times I said things that, you know, maybe regrettable, maybe didn’t come off the right way, maybe got interpreted a different way,” Mullen said. “You’re always trying to improve, always trying to get better and look at that. I think one of the things to do is as you look back and reflect and say ‘Hey, at that moment is that the right way to approach something?'”

Mullen had other cringeworthy moments in 2020.

The SEC reprimanded and fined him $25,000 after league officials decided he did more to inflame than extinguish a tense situation against Missouri that led to a brawl at halftime on Halloween night. Mullen wore a Darth Vader costume to his postgame news conference, essentially welcoming the villain role.

He found himself in hotter water just before Christmas, when the NCAA said Mullen had failed to “promote an atmosphere of compliance” for having impermissible contact with a recruit in Seattle and allowing impermissible contact with seven teams that stopped in Gainesville on their way to an event in Tampa.

The violations landed Florida on NCAA probation for the first time in 30 years.

His greatest hits of 2020.

Maybe UF cancelled the spring game so he’d have one less topic to stick his foot in his mouth about.

The show cause penalty also probably means no raise or extension for Mullen, who is 29-9 since replacing Jim McElwain following the 2017 season. He has three years remaining on a six-year, $36.6 million contract that makes him the 10th-highest-paid coach in college football.

“Yeah, I don’t control that part of it, so I’ve got to worry about what I control,” he said. “That can be in somebody else’s press conference. That’d be a good question for them.”

Then again…

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Florida punts on a spring game.

Due to lingering COVID concerns, I would assume.

I guess if they replay last season’s Cocktail Party enough, none of their fans will notice.

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TFW when your Richt vs. Smart takes aren’t hot enough

Ask me that again when Mullen wins his first SEC championship.

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So, how’s that recruiting gap coming along, Gators?

Shot.

SEC East

1. Georgia Bulldogs

The bar is set at a ridiculously high level for Georgia recruiting, and Kirby Smart and his staff hit it. There’s the normal array of four and five-star guys with a little bit of something for every spot, but it’s all about Brock Vandagriff. If he’s not the best quarterback recruit of the 2021 season, he’s close. As long as he’s close to being as good as advertised, this is a class to keep the program’s national title expectations high.

2. Florida Gators

It’s not as good a class as the last few, but it’s close enough. No, this isn’t as strong as what Alabama and Georgia brought in, but it’s more than fine for what it needed to do. There isn’t a superstar quarterback signing – Carlos Del Rio is a good prospect, though – and there isn’t a ton for the skills spots, but the defense is loading up with a slew of excellent defensive backs to throw at the pass D problem.

Chaser.

They don’t call Dan Mullen the Portal Master™ for nothing, peeps.

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Filed under Gators, Gators..., Georgia Football, Recruiting

Huntley Johnson, MVP

There’s a reason Corch had that fucker on speed dial.

That is an accurate number, per the New York Times.

A roster on the university’s Web site lists 121 players, 41 of whom have been arrested, either in college or afterward, and sometimes both. That number included 16 players on that season’s final two-deep roster, nine of whom were starters, as well as a kicker, punter and returner. Several of those players went on to the N.F.L., and one, Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton, later won the Heisman Trophy playing for Auburn.

Definitely a special team.  Mrs. Corch was pretty special, too.

After Hernandez’s arrest, Florida declined to comment. Meyer, about to start his second season as coach of Ohio State, initially declined to answer questions about Hernandez, a player who reportedly went to regular Bible study in Meyer’s home.

But Meyer’s wife, Shelley, posted on her Twitter page, “When will we start holding individuals accountable for their own decisions/actions and stop blaming any/everyone else?” She added the hashtag “liveyourliferight.”

Praise Jesus!

But in 2009, the number of arrests was such that The Orlando Sentinel, which covers the university, decided to maintain an online database to keep track of them.

I guess those Bible studies didn’t take real well.

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Filed under Crime and Punishment, Gators, Gators..., Urban Meyer Points and Stares

Your Daily Gator returns.

Some people see a commitment of another 5-star quarterback recruit as a plus for Kirby Smart.  Then again, some people aren’t Florida fans, like this guy.

Screenshot_2021-01-29 Gunner Stockton to UGA

Cool, man.  And how did your team make out in its bowl game?

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