I do this every year, so if you’ve been around awhile you know this is my annual reminder of why I absolutely, positively, without a shadow of doubt despise the Georgia Bulldogs with every cell in my body past, present and future. If you’re new, then read and understand this basic tenet – unless Georgia winning would help the Florida Gators move closer to a championship, there is no reason whatsoever to ever wish the Bulldogs to win no matter the sport.
Let me also make one thing perfectly clear. We are Gators who actually went to college. We are not uneducated, functional illiterate rednecks. We know how to spell. It’s D-O-G-S … not d-a-w-g-s.
When the Gators or anyone else plays Georgia in any sport, I hope for such a lopsided Florida win that Bulldogs everywhere will feel the humiliation to the very core of their existence. Any horrendous loss for Georgia makes a good day even better for a Gator.
Now, before I list a few of the many reasons why I despise Georgia and why you should, too, I’d like to make two statements: (1) I believe William Tecumseh Sherman should have detoured on his march to the sea and gone to Athens where he should have burned down the University of Georgia and salted the earth so nothing would grow for 100 years; and (2) in my wildest dream, Florida scores on Georgia with 10 seconds to go to make it 99-0, goes for two, kicks onside and recovers, then throws the bomb for a touchdown on the game’s last play.
Reason #1: My father was a 17-year-old University of Florida student in 1942, waiting until he was 18 to enlist during World War II. On most college campuses across the country, every able-bodied student above the age of 18 had already enlisted. Florida’s football team that year was made up of young guys waiting for their 18th birthday or those who had flunked their physical. Not so at Georgia, which had one of the two or three best ROTC programs in the country. Georgia’s football team was loaded with athletes from all over the country doing their officer training while engaging in a little bit of football. Among Georgia’s athletes were Frank Sinkwich, who would win the Heisman, and Charlie Trippi, one of the greatest college football players in history. When the Gators and Bulldogs played in Jacksonville on November 7, the game was over by halftime but Wally Butts poured it on. Late in the fourth quarter with Georgia up by 10 touchdowns Sinkwich and Trippi were still in the game. The final score was 75-0, just another notch on Georgia’s belt as the Bulldogs went on to win the national championship. Until the day he died my father remembered that game and how Butts poured it on. My dad hoped Georgia would lose every game in every sport as long as sports were played.
Reason #2: The 1968 season was going south for the Gators and by the time the Florida-Georgia game rolled around, UF was in disarray and the locker room was split down the middle because of a quarterback controversy. Making matters worse, when UF offensive coordinator Fred Pancoast was hospitalized for an appendectomy days before the game, Ray Graves elected to shake up the staff by putting defensive coordinator Gene Ellenson in charge of the offense and O-line coach Ed Kensler in charge of the defense. On that cold, rainy and ever so miserable day in Jacksonville, Georgia just pounded the life out of the Gators from the opening whistle but with seconds remaining in the game, Vince Dooley called time out and sent his center in to kick a field goal. Why? Because Georgia’s center told Dooley he always wanted to kick a field goal. That made the score 51-0 and it was insulting. Everybody who was at the Gator Bowl that day will remember how cold and miserable it was and just how humiliating the field goal was at the end. If you ever want to know Steve Spurrier’s obsession with running up the score on Georgia, that’s it. Steve called Gene Ellenson that night and Ellenson told him what happened. Steve never forgot. When the Gators hung 50 on Georgia in Athens in 1995, Spurrier noted that he had evened the score for Coach Ellenson.
Reason #3: Vince Dooley. He’s that bastion of integrity whose football program got lit up by the NCAA three times while he was head coach (1978, 1982 and 1985) and whose athletic program got put on probation three times while he was the AD. In 1982 Vince stonewalled the NCAA during its investigation into the bidding war for Herschel Walker between UGa and USC. Georgia lost two scholarships. When Florida got nailed by the NCAA in 1984 for a rules violations, some pretty bad but most really heinous such as Dale Dorminey getting a T-shirt, pack of Juicy Fruit and a Sprite (you could look it up), the Gators were stripped of the SEC championship they won on the field and were limited to 12 scholarships for two years. Who led the charge to strip the Gators? Good ole Vince. When the Gators got a year’s probation in 1990 for things that happened before any player on the 1990 roster was even a Gator, the SEC declared the Gators ineligible for the SEC title. Leading the charge? Vince Dooley. Don’t forget this is the same Vince Dooley whose athletic department ran an academic fraud scheme that Jan Kemp uncovered. Dooley led the charge for Kemp to be fired. She sued and was awarded $1.08 million by the jury, a hefty sum in the 1980s.
Reason 4: The 2007 incident when Mark Richt had Georgia storm the field.
I wasn’t there in 1942 but my dad was and he never forgot. I’ve never forgotten the 1968 game or the two votes Dooley cast. The incident in 2007 still makes me seethe.
From my point of view, there is not enough calamity or humiliation that can be poured on the Georgia athletic department. I despise Georgia. You should too.
Last week: 4-2
#11 FLORIDA (6-1, 4-1 SEC) 21, GEORGIA (5-2, 3-2 SEC) 13: The Magical Mystery Tour that is Florida football under Jim McElwain will continue. Whether it’s the running game, throwing the football, great defense or smoke and mirrors it really doesn’t matter. Florida and Jim McElwain will simply find a way to win. It’s going to be a relatively low scoring game. Georgia will make the critical mistakes. Florida will not. Georgia will be eliminated from the SEC East race. Again. Florida will all but clinch the East for the first time since 2009. Stat to remember: Georgia is 16-25 against ranked teams since 2006.
#19 OLE MISS (6-2, 3-1 SEC) 37, AUBURN (4-3, 1-3 SEC) 20: Some folks are claiming this is the game when Auburn rises from the ashes like the mythical Phoenix. The only thing mythical about this game is the idea that Auburn will win. Ole Miss has its swagger back.
TEXAS A&M (5-2, 2-2 SEC) 30, SOUTH CAROLINA (3-4, 1-4 SEC) 14: With or without a QB controversy – they do indeed have one at A&M – the Aggies are simply a whole lot better than the Gamecocks.
TENNESSEE (3-4, 1-3 SEC) 28, KENTUCKY (4-3, 2-3 SEC) 24: The Vols are cocky again, thinking the Kentucky game is the start of a 5-game win streak that will end the regular season on a high note. A 5-game win streak is possible. So is the 2-game losing streak the Vols would have if they lose to the Mildcats. Tennessee probably wins. But, maybe not.
ARKANSAS (3-4, 2-2 SEC): It’s homecoming in Fayette Nam and the Hogs are playing a D1AA team. The Hogs won’t be favored again until the last game of the season against Missouri.
HOUSTON (7-0) 33, VANDERBILT (3-4, 1-4 SEC) 13: The Commodores are riding a 1-game win streak. It will be a 1-game losing streak after Houston head coach Tom Herman dissects the Vandy defense.
COUNTDOWN TO FIRING DAY: WEEK 9 EDITION
EXTINCT SPECIES LIST
1. Tim Beckman, Illinois
2. Dan McCarney, North Texas
3. Randy Edsall, Maryland
4. Steve Sarkisian, Southern Cal
5. Steve Spurrier, South Carolina (retired)
6. George O’Leary, UCF (retired)
7. Al Golden, Miami
8. Jerry Kill, Minnesota (retired)
ON LIFE SUPPORT
1. Darrell Hazell, Purdue (1-6): They want to fire him. They need to fire him. The accountants have to assure everyone they’ve got the $6 million they need to buy out his contract. Next loss: Nebraska.
2. Paul Rhoads, Iowa State (2-5): Rhoads fired offensive coordinator Mark Mangino. About the only thing saved there is an extra seat on the plane. Mangino is so big he takes up two. Losing to Texas Saturday will probably be the last straw for Rhoads.
3. Mike London, Virginia (2-5): The Cadavers have to go 4-1 the rest of the way to save London’s job. After he loses to Georgia Tech this weekend, he’ll have to go 4-0.
4. Trent Miles, Georgia State (2-4): If stars and planets align Georgia State could go 2-4 to finish the season and maybe, just maybe, that would save Miles’ job.
5. Kyle Flood, Rutgers (3-4): Flood should have been fired weeks ago but Rutgers doesn’t have the money and AD Julie Herman doesn’t have the character to make big decisions. The coach and AD need to be canned. Now.
6. Norm Chow, Hawaii (2-6): The folks in charge at UH are sadistic. They are going to force Norm to coach all the way to the end of the season before they fire him. The merciful thing would be to fire him immediately after Saturday’s loss to Air Force.
7. Todd Berry, Louisiana Monroe (1-6): In losing to Idaho, Berry very well may have secured Paul Petrino’s job for one more year. As for Berry, he’s a goner. You can’t lose to Idaho and remain gainfully employed, not even in the Sun Belt Conference.
ENDANGERED SPECIES LIST
1. Chuck Martin, Miami Ohio (1-8): After Thursday night’s loss to Buffalo, there are three games remaining and Martin really needs to win all three if he’s planning to be the HBC next year. This is a nice starter job for a really good coach.
2. Doug Martin, New Mexico State (0-7): This is the part of the season where you look for positives. Any positives. Okay, Larry Rose gained 180 yards rushing last week in a 52-7 loss and is really close to going over the 1,000-yard mark for the second straight year. Imagine what he could do playing for a decent team.
3. Paul Haynes, Kent State (3-5): Haynes gets a bye week to gear up for the most important 4-game stretch of his career. Win three games and he coaches at Kent State next year. Anything less and he’s a goner.
4. Curtis Johnson, Tulane (2-5): It doesn’t help Johnson’s cause that Two Lane is a 30.5-point dog on the road this week at Memphis. He might be On Life Support next week. There is a really good chance he doesn’t survive the season.
5. Scott Shafer, Syracuse (3-4): After starting the season 3-0, the Orange have a chance to end the season on a 9-game losing streak. Florida State comes to the Carrier Dome this weekend. If FSU scores a blowout, Shafer goes On Life Support.
1. Willie Taggart, USF (4-3): Three wins in a row have the folks excited. Three more wins and Taggart will be coaching in Tampa next year.
2. Derek Mason, Vanderbilt (3-4): Getting that first SEC win over Missouri was important because the Vandy administration really doesn’t want to fire Mason. They might change their minds this weekend if Houston dials up a blowout.
3. Kevin Wilson, Indiana (4-4): Apparently the people who make such decisions have elected to give Wilson another year. There are four remaining games, two of which are winnable. Wilson can’t lose this week. The Hoosiers have a bye.
4. Mike MacIntyre, Colorado (4-4): The Buffs will be underdogs in their four remaining games but unless some booster comes through with the money it will take to buy him out, MacIntyre will be coaching Colorado next year. Colorado’s athletic department swims in $30 million of red ink.
5. Butch Jones, Tennessee (3-4): Jones supporters like to point out the Vols could easily be 7-0. Those same supporters might not be so happy if the Vols figure out a way to lose to Kentucky this week.
6. Frank Beamer, Virginia Tech (3-5): Beamer knows his coaching career is on the skids but he really would like to go out with 300 career wins. He’s got 275 now and he’s 69 years old. He needs to cut his losses and announce his retirement before the boosters get too antsy and forget 234 of Beamer’s wins are at VaTech.
Dalvin Cook will miss Florida State’s game with Syracuse at the Carrier Dome due to a sprained ankle.
Ohio State reported six minor NCAA violations for football. Among them, Braxton Miller was seen in an Instagram post that promoted Advocare products and Cardale Jones played in a charity softball game.
Rapper Luther Campbell approves of the following five coaches to replace Al Golden: Mario Cristobal (Alabama O-line); Tim Brewster (FSU TE/recruiting coordinator); Dana Holgorsen (West Virginia HBC); Mark Stoops (Kentucky HBC) and Charlie Strong (Texas, HBC).
USC will spend $270 million to renovate the 92-year-old Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum that has hosted two Olympics, Super Bowls and World Series.
TCU QB Trevone Boykin is scary good. All he did in TCU’s win over West Virginia was throw for 388 yards and 3 TDs and run for 84 and another TD. For the season he’s thrown for 2,937 yards and 28 TDs and rushed for 524 and 9 TDs.
QUESTION OF THE DAY
What are your predictions for Florida-Georgia and Tennessee-Kentucky?
MUSIC FOR TODAY
Darius Rucker is making far too much money to look back on his days fronting for Hootie and the Blowfish that he would decide to go back to rock and roll, but I do miss those days. “Cracked Rear View” is still one of those CDs I have to pull out and listen to every so often. It’s one of those CDs I bought based on one song “Only Want to Be with You,” and I wasn’t disappointed.