Therefore for the next three weeks we'll salute some of the best teams in UF history that did not claim the biggest trophy of them all. This week we start off with a six pack of remarkable football seasons. Next week we'll follow that up with six basketball seasons of note, and then six more articles that will salute great seasons from a number of other Gator teams.
Today is part three of the best football seasons that didn't earn national titles.
#6 -- 1966
#4 1960 -----
The Gators opened with wins over George Washington (30-7) and Florida State (3-0) but it was week three that got everyone's attention. The unranked Gators rallied to shock Bobby Dodd's Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets 18-17 and earned a national ranking as a result.
That ranking didn't last long as the euphoric Gators couldn't come down to earth in just one week and lost to Rice 10-0. Wins over Vanderbilt (12-0) and LSU (13-10) got the Gators back on track, but a heartbreaking 10-7 loss to Auburn took the Gators off the top perch in the SEC standings. Florida finished strongly, beating Georgia (22-14), Tulane (21-6) and Miami (18-0) to wrap up the regular season 8-2.
Graves' Gators made it a record-setting season by beating Baylor 13-12 in the Gator Bowl, giving the University of Florida its first nine-win season.
I chose this season because of what it meant to the program not only for a year but for the decade of the '60s. Graves coached the Gators for the entire decade, posting nine winning seasons, three nine-win seasons and the best decade in school history.
Questions or comments? Contact FightinGators.com's Larry Vettel