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- Thread: Nice to be here...
Hail to the Victors Valiant!
Hail to the Conquering Heroes!
Hail, Hail To Florida
The Gators Are The Best!
That was an amazing game and hopefully, a good indicator of things to come. As I said in my preview, I do think there was some lack of motivation, but not enough that leads to a 26 point blowout. I saw excellent coaching that I will definitely get into. Made a long day (flew round trip to ATL for the day and flight home was delayed) worth it.
The turning point of the game, honestly, was the review on Michigan's first drive calling back the touchdown. That early? Yes. If Michigan marches for a TD that quickly, it sets a tone for the game that isn't good for us. Instead Michigan (and their fans), get a deflating overturn that gives them third and 1. We stop them. Fourth and 1, we stop them again. Now the Gators and their fans are alive. Add in that Michigan was trying to utilize a power game and you have the confidence that we can be physical with a Michigan team that pushed us around last year. Great job by Vosean on the play. Chase Winovich doing the chomp incorrectly is a close second.
This offense was overall great. Outside of the first drive, the only thing stopping the offense all day was self-inflicted wounds like penalties. I was surprised with how little we saw of Emory, but that's the good thing. On his first carry, he could have run at any angle and possibly broke it for a TD. Still a good four yard run though. Emory will continue to improve and see the field. I was surprised we took him out when we did as well. Enough about Jones, but I wanted to be sure I mentioned it.
Perine I think is the most underrated player on this offense. He is phenomenal. I know most Chatter readers know this, but this guy has made plays all year in the passing and running game. Taking a "give up" play, the typical third and long draw 53-yards to the house was amazing. It was also the point where I texted GAME SET MATCH to people. Scarlett also had plenty of the good runs as well. Heck, his big broken tackle type run in the third quarter would have been a TD if Van Jefferson goes back to play rather than trying to lead the way.
Florida ran a formation that I did not see a lot of this season quite a bit. It was quads to one side and a single receiver to the other side. Every time we lined up in this formation, there were two options, screen or QB draw. If Michigan went wide, then Franks would draw. He did this for a decent game before the second FG. Then the second time was the first TD. The screen got us a first down (#5 below) and a TD to Perine (#17 below). Great recognition by Franks on which he was doing.
The creativity and play calling was also there. Not just what was mentioned above. The 4th and 1 hand off to Toney for a big gain and Scarlett's TD were both well done and called at the right time. The called back crossing route on the first possession of the third quarter was creative, just a small mistake by Grimes. Back to Toney, what a leap, though it didn't count, he left the ground at the five, got the ball stretched inside the pylon and landed well past the endline. The trick play didn't work, but the timing was thrown off by poor blocking on the initial throw.
Franks. Franks overall had a great game. In my opinion, Franks had the best rushing game he's had as far as efficiency. Several good scrambles and a number of good designed runs. Franks even had a great recognition early on a third down. The defensive tackles lined up wide of the center and I believe he saw it and audibled into a sneak, which he got.
- Throwing the ball away on the first play from scrimmage under immense pressure. Great throwaway.
- Franks recognizes the blitz is coming from his left, then rolls left. I don't care if designed or not, this is stupid. If it is designed, audible, if it is not, you've seen where it's coming, don't go that way. At least he threw the ball away instead of being sacked.
- Slant complete to Jefferson for 9 yards. Good throw, good route.
- Swing to Perine for 5 yards.
- Screen to Perine out of quads for a first down. (We did this again later for a TD).
- Excellent seam route throw to Jefferson for massive gain.
- A one on one fade to Grimes, incomplete. Grimes needs to fight a little more, but Franks needs to make the 50-50 ball higher for the 6-3 Grimes.
- Play action jump ball to Hammond for a big gain. Franks threw it off his back foot under pressure. Good play.
- Incompletion in the flat to Franks. Tossed it a little high, but Scarlett also tried to stop and one hand it. If he continues to run, it should be caught. Franks could not have thrown it much lower as a defender was between him and Scarlett as he released it.
- Bad read to throw to the sideline by Franks deep. Had an open guy on the seam. Incomplete.
- Slant to Jefferson for 7.
- Back shoulder throw to Jefferson that had lots of hand fighting between Jefferson and the defender, incomplete.
- Overthrew Jefferson who was behind the defense (how many times have we typed that this year).
- Slant for 7 yards on second down to set up third and 5.
- Pass to Perine to set up 4th and 1.
- Good throwaway, all the routes in the endzone were covered. Last year, Franks would force it and it would be a pick.
- Perine screen for a TD.
- Screen to Grimes for a loss of 2.
- Underthrew Van Jefferson on the sideline. He had time, not sure how he underthrew that bad.
- A dart to Josh Hammond for a 30 yard game on 3rd and 12.
- No one open, throwaway under pressure. Live (and stadium replay), but not on camera, you could see what Franks is yelling about after the play. A receiver took his route too deep and into coverage. He would have been thrown to if he ran it shorter.
- THE kiss of death. C'yontai Lewis catches a ball for a big gain on 3 & 6. Great throw. If slightly better, it's a longer gain, but I'm not about to whine about a 20+ yard gain on 3rd down.
This defense allowed two scoring drives, one in the first and one in the fourth. I don't count the FG from the blocked punt where they got a 3 and out. Cece Jefferson and Chauncey balled out in their last games as Gators. I accidentally ran into Jefferson as he got back to the team hotel as I was walking by to get to the MARTA station. I made sure to thank him for coming to Florida. Jefferson getting a sack on the last important drive, well, last drive that we didn't play for the Hail Mary, of his Gators career was great. Chauncey Gardner-Johnson has 4 INT's, 171 return yards, and 2 TD's in his two bowl games. Imagine where he'd be if he wasn't as safety last year. Also, amazing how much better his tackling got this year. Great play by Hendo to knock the ball loose on that 3rd down throw early in the 4th quarter. The official had a terrible angle so I don't blame the TD call, but great job by the replay booth in fixing it.
We saw some perfectly timed DB blitzes that got Hendo and Burney sacks. Last year, it was Michigan that killed our offensive when it went lateral. This year, it was our defense doing that. I cannot wait to see this defense next year after another year of Savage's program. That's a discussion for another time.
McPherson continues to march towards what I am hoping is the new all-time scoring leader at UF. Adding 11 points to his total.
We allowed two blocked punts. Some people blame Townsend, we will say Edgar Thompson, don't be Edgar Thompson. Is Townsend slower on his punts? Yes. It is designed. Re-watch the first punt, he's doing it consistently. Why? Tommy Townsend regularly boots the ball 50+ yards in the air when the ball is at the Gators 40 or further back. If you think back to the first part of the season, Townsend was outkicking the coverage and teams were getting decent to good to great punt return yardage. The delay of an extra second is about 9 more yards a gunner can get before the returner gets the ball. (At 40 yards in 4 seconds, its 10 yards a second, so making some small adjustment approximate. Yay, algebra.) With that said, Townsend needs to recognize a block team is coming, but the blockers need to do better. I'll give the first one a pass. After that one though, We need to go into punt max protection. This was also great recognition by the Michigan staff to send block teams.
- Loved the two different occasions that they played "I Won't Back Down" in Atlanta, the crowd was just as electric there as in the Swamp.
- Harbaugh is a child.
- There's something special about players crying for joy after the game. I'm glad they had something that means so much to them.
- What you didn't see after the 4th down run by Jones to give Michigan a few more snaps...Shawn Davis did a back handspring in full gear, helmet and all. That is some impressive athleticism.
- If you also flew round trip on Spirit yesterday, good to meet you.
- And of course, Great to see BNA again and meeting everyone else. It was a good, but sadly short, meet up.
We took the state back!
It seems as if our lost decade might finally be coming to a close. Four weeks ago, after we lost to Georgia, I said that we couldn't fall apart down the stretch in November like we have so many times in the post-Tebow era. And while we definitely laid an egg against Missouri and looked like crap for 2.5 quarters against South Carolina, something clicked in these guys' heads and we finished as strongly as we have in a very long time. What's truly staggering is how quickly FSU hit the skids. In all honesty it almost mirrors exactly what happened to us 9 years ago, so I'm hoping we can parlay yesterday's dominance into years of running the state again.
Franks had a few wobbly moments early yesterday, but ended up having what might have been his best game yet. He threw the ball away when he had to, only forced one throw that I can remember, didn't turn the ball over, made some nice plays with his feet, and threw some absolute dimes to our receivers. Granted, FSU's pass defense is horrendous, but the first step in being a good QB is lighting up the defenses you're supposed to light up. And for the most part, I think Franks did that this year. Obviously the Missouri game was bad, but he performed well against the rest of the mediocre/bad defenses on our schedule.
Now the challenge is getting him to elevate his game to perform like that against the good/great defenses. We can all debate on whether or not that's possible, but the Franks from this year was far superior to the version we got of him last year, with the obvious difference being the coaching he's receiving now as opposed to last year. I feel like he's only going to keep improving now that he's truly being coached for the first time in his career. It's still possible he won't be our starter next year, but at least he's giving Mullen a choice. Either way, I think down the road we'll look back on this season and truly appreciate what Franks did to hold this offense together and transition to Mullen's QB recruits. As it stands, he is our first quarterback to start every game of a season since Tebow left (look it up, it's true).
There's really not much more for me to say on the rest of the game. We just dominated them in every phase. The biggest takeaway is still the shocking fall from grace FSU had. It cannot be overstated how important this recruiting cycle is. This is where Mullen is really going to earn that paycheck. He's done it on the field so far with a mishmash of decent, but shallow talent. Now he needs to load his own cupboard up so we're not one injury away from playing walk ons. We were VERY fortunate to only have one major injury all year, which was Marco Wilson. Other than Mullen, the most important hire that was made was Nick Savage. It's amazing what a real offseason strength and conditioning program does for your results in the fall.
Looking forward to seeing our bowl matchup. Win or lose, it's amazing that we're in a New Year's Six bowl when at this time last year, we were tracking airplanes and melting down about the coaching search. Going from a listless four wins (that could have easily been two) to a mostly dominating nine wins is coach of the year type stuff. Great season, Gators!
- Thread: Florida State is atrocious: Hires Baylor’s Sexual Assault Culture Architect Briles’ son as OC
damn it feels good to be a gator.
If this isn’t the epitome of this game idk what is:
Here’s to a new streak. Here’s to not worrying about that shytshow in Tally for the foreseeable future. Here’s to the future.
In the legendary words of Jboss: the haters got OWNED and DESTROYED this season
- Like x 30
- Facepalm x 1
- Thread: Captain's Cogitations - LSU
The Cogitations are back! I had to take a bye week last week because we were moving and I hardly got to watch any of the MSU game, but the show returns!
What a day, what a win! Everything was perfect about that game day yesterday. Between the good people at the tailgate, the flyover, Tebow's ceremony, honoring the '08 team, and a classic UF-LSU game to top it all off, that was one of my favorite games I've ever been to in the Swamp. My ears are still ringing this morning and my voice is hoarse, this is the way it should always be!
Now onto the brass tacks. Franks once again had a vintage performance where we weren't quite sure what he was going to do from play to play. He dropped a couple dimes in there and had a couple head scratchers, but he did what he had to do to win the game. I still think he's doing a great job considering the OL situation, and that throwaway he had when a guy was hanging all over him might have been his most impressive play of the day. I couldn't quite tell what happened on the interception, but it looked like there was some miscommunication between he and Stephens. It was almost like he thought Stephens was going to continue his seam route, but he broke it off. I'd have to see a replay of the play to get a better idea, but it definitely wasn't just a case of an inaccurate throw. His throw of the day was obviously the corner route he hit Hammond on right before half. Stepped up in the pocket, had some pressure on all sides, and dropped a perfect ball right into the recevier's hands. If he can keep building off plays like that, we might have an honest to goodness QB on our hands.
Play calling wise, I was loving the creativity, but I was also scratching my head on a couple of our short yardage plays. There was the one 3rd & 1 where we called a keeper for Franks when Scarlett had been running the ball well, and we got stuffed. There was the 3rd & 2 where we had Jefferson on the short crosser and he didn't run his route across the sticks (although that's not as much of a play call issue than it is an execution issue). And then there was the downfield pass he called on 2nd down when we were trying to run the clock. I don't mind the pass there, but make it something that has a greater probability of success than a throw that has to travel 30 yards across the field for a 10 yard gain. But the throwback from Krull, the rocker step from Franks, the jet sweep to Toney, and that nifty speed option we also ran against MSU were all fantastic calls. We're starting to see Mullen get comfortable calling some of those gadget plays he's famous for, but I'd like to see him call some more reliable plays in short yardage situations.
Defensively, it's clear that whatever was ailing us against UK is gone. LSU came out with the up tempo and caught our guys off guard early, but that sack fumble by Polite got LSU out of their comfort zone and they never really got back in it. I'd obviously like to see them not give up two gashes on a 4th quarter drive when we're protecting a lead, but they made up for that in a big way once they got back on the field after that. Stewart's pick six was one of the loudest moments I've ever experienced in my 9 years going to games in the Swamp, right up there with the opening play TD against Bama in '11 and the miracle plays against UT in '15 and '17. Polite and Zuniga continue to be absolute terrors in the pass rush, and it's clear that opposing offenses sure as hell better do whatever they can to stay out of obvious passing situations. It's been astonishing to see the improvement by this unit over the last few weeks. The UK game was a wakeup call, and they answered the bell. I remember saying in the UK Cogitations that our defense woke up and played lights out after struggling against UT in '15, and it seems as if the same thing happened again this year.
All in all, it's great to see this team buying into Mullen's philosophies so quickly. I, like most of you, was not thrilled with the hire when it was made, but he's won me over in a big way. You don't see a head coach in a close game in the 4th quarter jumping around the field pumping up the crowd during a timeout. The entire crowd was going apesh*t from that moment forward. It's quite obvious that UF was his dream job, and he probably should have been here a long time ago. This is a coach who knows the crowd, knows the town, and even though it didn't feel like it 11 months ago, was the perfect man for the job.
Sleepy noon start at Vandy next week, so if you're able to get to Nashville and turn it into the Swamp North, get your butts in those seats to pump our guys up! Till next week!
Leak passed for 3k in 06, Tebow passed for 3200 and 2700 yards in 07 and 08.
Dak passed for 3500 and 3800 yards his junior and senior years.
Doesn’t pass huh? You don’t have to like him but stop lying.
- Thread: RIP GMDGator
URG just brought to my attention that one of our oldest members, GMDGator - a Founding Member and Lifetime Supporting Member, passed away at the age of 47 on May 6th.
View Earl Kelly,'s Obituary and express your condolences
While GMD was mostly involved in the Political Forum, he truly loved the Gators and had a great sense of humor. We enjoyed tormenting him greatly and he was almost always a great sport. He hadn't logged on since May 2nd and I had actually emailed him a couple of times.
We'll miss you, man - keep on rooting for our Gators on the other side.
Rest in peace.
The Noles are a dumpster fire. The players have quit. The fans are jumping off the ship in droves. I cannot say this with more emphasis:
We HAVE to win this football game.
FSU has had things go their way for many years now, and have taken full advantage with recruiting. This is our opportunity to turn the tables and humiliate them. This is the opportunity to take the damn state back and show recruits that choosing FSU is a ticket for embarrassment. Willie Taggart could be the best thing that ever happened to Florida football IF we take full advantage of it.
However, this game concerns me. It's almost certainly going to be viewed as their championship game. If FSU can win next week (which frankly is doubtful against Boston College), they will need to win to continue their coveted bowl streak. I have my doubts Taggart could actually motivate anyone, but I've seen the Noles get scores of lucky bounces over the last 3 decades and nothing would surprise me.
PLEASE Gators put those slimebags away. A season with a win over UT, LSU, and FSU would be a great opening year for Mullen.
- Thread: The Savage Treatment
Having watched this team develop for a little over half a season, I think it is clear that perhaps the most important part of this resurgence is the arrival of Nick Savage (who has one of the best names for a strength and conditioning coach ever)! The reasons I think this are as follows:
1) Team Identity - He has helped fuel the team's unification by making them understand the importance of a truly team first attitude. Things like the rope drill and having individual and/or team related versions of the constant competitions in all aspects of training has helped to both build individual grit while also helping gel the team across and within position groups.
2) Constitution - Part of the reason the team has been so successful turning things around this season is that they clearly still have juice in the 4th quarter. Part of that is some wise rotation patterns but part of it is also having so much more in the gas tank when it gets late in games especially in position groups that are somewhat short handed like LBs. It was especially gratifying to see the LB corps step up after the defensive player of the week from the week before (Joseph) and one of the top LB backups were both ejected before the 2nd half.
3) Recovery - It has been very interesting to watch how the players have responded to the inevitable dings that come with this game. The last 2 coaches seemed to have had a rash of injuries at times which would remove players from the lineup for considerable periods. Though admittedly some of that is attributable to the luck of the game, it has been really amazing how many times guys are knocked out of the game, go to the locker room for evaluation and treatment, and then show up again later on the field. Again, I recognize some of this is just good fortune (which we are kind of due after last year and Muschamp's 2nd to last year!) but I think the level of strength and fitness these guys have achieved is also a big contributor because they are able to both absorb and dish out a great deal more punishment than in years past. Mullen clearly adopted the Urban Meyer approach to this area and I can see why.
4) Spirit - This is the area that is most pleasantly unexpected for a strength coach especially one who has a reputation of being so savage . When the fracas occurred last week it was Savage and his team who was attributed with using that as a means of firing them up. It was also Savage that escorted off Joseph when he was ejected and he seemed to be also using that incident as a means to inspire other team members while he was doing it. Most everyone on the team has also been quoted numerous times praising Savage for being instrumental in bringing everyone together.
Overall, I think one of Mullen's most important contributions to this turn around has been bringing in Savage and empowering him to not only clean up the conditioning train wreck left behind by the last staff, but also to use Savage's position as the one coach with the most time and influence on every player as a basis for installing his new team culture in every facet of what they've done in that area. That is one big reason that I think getting a 9 year SEC veteran coach was an underrated factor in most of our evaluations of the various 'shiny thing' coaching candidates considered for taking over this team. I for one am happily willing to admit that I am glad he is proving us all wrong.
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