Counting Down The Best UF Stories Of 2005-06

For the next few weeks we will be looking back at the biggest moments of the year for the Florida Gators. Our countdown of the top ten Gator sports stories is never an easy thing to do. Shoot, Florida had ten teams finish in the top ten in the country, there's ten big stories right there. The Gator basketball team gave us enough moments to have its own top ten.

(First of a 10-part series)

The 2005-06 sports year brought us year one of Urban Meyer's tenure at the University of Florida, a pair of SEC titles and any number of big wins and outstanding individual accomplishments. It was a year that saw another big name recruit pledged his allegiance to UF on national television and a Gator great get selected for the College Football Hall of Fame. It saw Steve Spurrier return to the college sidelines while two former Gators play for the NBA championship.

2005-06 saw the Gators lose their stranglehold on the SEC All-Sports Trophy, but also saw the Gators post yet another top ten National finish in similar standings. It saw a baseball team go from second in the nation to eleventh in the SEC. It saw the first triple-double in UF hoops history, but also saw the passing of Gator icons. Here's our best shot at the top ten stories of the Gator sports year.

#10: Mary Wise Claims 15th SEC Title

In 2004 Florida's volleyball coach had to do something she had not done since 1991. She had to share the SEC Championship. Wise, as nice a person as you'll ever meet, is not the most generous person around --- she HATES to share! This season, Florida posted a 15-1 SEC mark to win another conference crown outright. It extends the most remarkable streak of its kind in UF history.

Florida posted a 33-3 record for the season losing only to Notre Dame on a neutral site and at both Tennessee and Nebraska. Wise's Gators rolled through most of the other matches, winning 29 of them in three straight games. They also reclaimed the SEC Tournament title that Tennessee had swiped the year before, making it twelve conference tournament titles in 15 years. The success of the Gators is even more impressive when you factor into the conversation the fact that Tennessee went on to the Final Four.

The Gators once again boasted the SEC player of the year as Jane Collymore took home that honor for the second straight year. Sophomores Kisya Killingsworth and Angie McGinnis were also first-team All-SEC selections with another second year player Marie Hampton earning second team recognition.

A 15th consecutive title for Wise and her charges certainly ranks with the top coaching achievements ever at UF. It's not only a phenomenal string of success for the program; it's one that has been recognized nationally. Florida has won more matches in the last 15 years (492) than any other program in the nation. Florida set a national record by winning 105 consecutive games and set another mark by going more than ten years between conference losses.

It's easy to take the dominance of the Florida program for granted, but it's not right. Florida's 15th straight SEC Title is a remarkable accomplishment and in our eyes it's the #10 story of this past sports year.

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