Since 2008, the Florida Gators have gone through three coaches (Urban Meyer’s last year was 2010 and since then Will Muschamp from 2011-14 and Jim McElwain, who is heading into his second season) while posting a 73-32 record that is the fourth best mark in the Southeastern Conference behind Alabama (97-12), LSU (78-26) and Georgia (74-32). The Gators have one SEC and national championship (both in 2008) and three SEC East championships (2008-09, 2015).
To understand why the Gators are a full 23 games behind Alabama during the same period of time, it only takes a breakdown of the record. Florida is 41-13 at The Swamp since 2008 with 12 of those home losses since 2010. Florida lost more home games in 2010 (3) than he did in his first five years (from 2005-09) combined (2). Muschamp was 18-6 in his four years and McElwain was a very strong 6-1 last season.
Since 2010, the Gators are 28-21 in SEC play and they are just 19-18 on the road. Florida was 6-1 against ranked teams in 2008-09 but just 8-25 since and since 2010, UF is only 18-29 against teams with winning records.
The record since 2008:
Vs. SEC: 44-23
Vs. Ranked: 14-26
Vs. Unranked: 59-6
Vs. D1 teams with winning records: 35-31
The rest of the SEC
Alabama: All Nick Saban has done since 2008 is take the Crimson Tide to a 97-12 record with a most impressive 456-6 record away from Tuscaloosa. Alabama has not lost a game against an unranked team and is +15 against ranked teams. Alabama has the best home and away record in the SEC.
Vs. SEC: 61-9
Vs. Ranked: 27-12
Vs. Unranked: 70-0
Vs. D1 teams with winning records: 60-12
Arkansas: The four coaches (Houston Nutt, Bobby Petrino, John L. Smith and Bret Bielema) are a combined 56-45 since 2008. The Razorbacks are sub-.500 on the road, -12 in the SEC and -18 against ranked teams.
Vs. SEC: 26-38
Vs. Ranked: 10-28
Vs. Unranked: 46-17
Vs. D1 teams with winning records: 24-42
Auburn: Auburn’s 65-39 record since 2008 includes a 14-0 national championship season in 2010 and a 12-2 national runner-up in 2013. Take those two brilliant seasons away and the Tigers are a mediocre 39-37. Gus Malzahn is Auburn’s third coach since 2008 (Tommy Tuberville and Gene Chizik were the other two).
Vs. SEC: 32-34
Vs. Ranked: 15-26
Vs. Unranked: 50-13
Vs. D1 teams with winning records: 34-37
Georgia: Mark Richt took the Bulldogs to a 74-32 record since 2008, third best overall mark in the SEC but it couldn’t save his job. Richt was an impressive 42-9 at home, the third best mark in the SEC, but struggled against ranked teams (-13) and was only .500 against teams that registered a winning record.
Vs. SEC: 43-23
Vs. Ranked: 11-24
Vs. Unranked: 63-8
Vs. D1 teams with winning records: 31-31
Kentucky: The Wildcats are on their third coach (Rich Brooks and Joker Phillips were there before Mark Stoops) since 2008. Their 39-60 record is bad, but a 10-32 record away from Commonwealth Stadium and -26 against ranked teams and -40 against teams with a winning record tell the story of a program that has posted the worst overall and conference mark in the SEC in the last eight years.
Vs. SEC: 13-51
Vs. Ranked: 1-27
Vs. Unranked: 38-33
Vs. D1 teams with winning records: 8-48
LSU: Les Miles is supposedly occupying a very hot seat this year despite an overall mark of 78-26 since 2008 that includes four seasons with at least 10 wins and no season with less than eight. The Tigers have the second best home record in the SEC (49-8) but they’ve had troubles against ranked teams (-3) and they’re only +15 against teams with winning records during that time.
Vs. SEC: 43-26
Vs. Ranked: 17-20
Vs. Unranked: 61-6
Vs. D1 teams with winning records: 40-25
Mississippi State: The 59-43 mark since 2008 includes a 55-35 record posted by Dan Mullen since 2009. That’s big news in Starkville. Mullen has turned MSU into a winning program, but a closer look at the record shows the Bulldogs are -8 in SEC play since 2008, a very poor 2-32 against ranked teams and -21 against teams with a winning record.
Vs. SEC: 28-36
Vs. Ranked: 2-32
Vs. Unranked: 58-11
Vs. D1 teams with winning records: 20-41
Missouri: The Tigers are 69-36 since 2008, all under the retired Gary Pinkel. Mizzou only joined the SEC in 2012 but has won the SEC East twice (2013-14) while going 17-15 in league play. The Tigers are a dismal 5-22 against ranked teams and -16 against teams with a winning record. The new coach is Barry Odom.
Vs. SEC: 17-15
Vs. Ranked: 5-22
Vs. Unranked: 64-14
Vs. D1 teams with winning records: 35-31
Ole Miss: The Rebels are 58-44 since 2008 under Houston Nutt and Hugh Freeze. Freeze has won 34 games in the last four seasons. Ole Miss has a winning record away from Oxford, but the Rebels are -10 in the SEC, -12 against ranked teams and -6 against teams with a winning record.
Vs. SEC: 27-37
Vs. Ranked: 12-24
Vs. Unranked: 46-20
Vs. D1 teams with winning records: 26-32
South Carolina: The last eight years have been the most productive in South Carolina history. Steve Spurrier took the Gamecocks to seven straight bowl games and three straight 11-win seasons but he gave out of gas and fired himself midway through a rotten 3-9 2015. Still, the Gamecocks are 66-38 since 2008 and that includes a 43-13 record at Williams-Brice Stadium that is the fourth best home record in the league during that time. The Gamecocks were -3 on the road, -1 against ranked teams and -2 against D1 teams with winning records.
Vs. SEC: 34-31
Vs. Ranked: 18-19
Vs. Unranked: 48-19
Vs. D1 teams with winning records: 30-32
Tennessee: There was a time when Tennessee was one of the top five programs in the country, but the Vols are a mere 49-51 under four coaches (Phil Fulmer, Lane Kiffin, Derek Dooley and Butch Jones) since 2008. The Vols are a horrendous 3-33 against ranked teams, -20 against the SEC and -27 against D1 teams that have posted a winning record.
Vs. SEC: 22-42
Vs. Ranked: 3-33
Vs. Unranked: 46-18
Vs. D1 teams with winning records: 17-44
Texas A&M: The Aggies joined the SEC in 2012 and have a 17-15 league mark since then as part of an overall record of 62-41. The downfall of Texas A&M has been its play against ranked teams (9-26) and teams with winning records (28-36). Kevin Sumlin won 11 games in his first SEC season but has gone 25-14 since then ad 11-13 in SEC play.
Vs. SEC: 17-15
Vs. Ranked: 9-26
Vs. Unranked: 53-15
Vs. D1 teams with winning records: 28-36
Vanderbilt: Vanderbilt’s 42-58 record since 2008 includes four bowl games (2008 under Bobby Johnson and three consecutive bowls from 2011-13 under James Franklin). The Commodores are on their fourth coach (Robbie Caldwell and current coach Derek Mason are the other two) since 2008. They are 1-30 against ranked teams and 10-45 against teams with winning records.
Vs. SEC: 18-46
Vs. Ranked: 1-30
Vs. Unranked: 41-28
Vs. D1 teams with winning records: 10-45
The Seattle Seahawks have extended Pete Carroll’s contract through 2019. He’s the oldest coach in the NFL at 64. The Seahawks have won 60 NFL regular season games in the past six years while making the Super Bowl twice (won one) and the playoffs in five of the six seasons.
Ohio State’s Urban Meyer and Michigan State’s Mark Dantonio have both denied a somewhat veiled accusation by Penn State coach James Franklin that they are negatively recruiting against Penn State.
Paul Finebaum says he’s grown weary of Jim Harbaugh’s mouth and antics at Michigan and says it’s time for the coach to win some important football games. Said Finebaum, “He doesn’t need the attention anymore now … Until now he’s made a big name for himself but you forget. You think he’s maybe coaching at some small college in Idaho. He’s coaching at the University of Michigan … Now win. Last year, you looked like a chump when Urban Meyer came into your house and beat you 42-14 … Start winning games or you’re not going to have any credibility when we come back next year to Big Ten Media Days.”
QUESTION OF THE DAY
Which is the bigger surprise to you when you look at the football stats of the SEC since 2008: That Alabama has won 19 more games than its closest competitor or that Florida has fallen so far behind?
MUSIC FOR TODAY
The Avett Brothers, who will be playing the Friday night concert at the Jacksonville Veterans Coliseum the night before the Florida-Georgia game put on one of the great shows you’ll ever see. Their style of progressive bluegrass has created a tremendous following to the point that their concerts have become sing-alongs.
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