- In the year 2017 Florida football is a speed bump. It only bottoms out cars with bad shocks and drivers who carelessly accelerate too hard without realizing something, anything is in the way. It is not capable of doing anything, per se; It can only have things done to it, or damage something that completely ignored it. It’s only a problem for football teams in disrepair or unaware of their surroundings. It is a lump.
- Michigan ran over that lump with ease and barreled forward yesterday towards the rest of their season, a season that even with Indiana and Maryland on the schedule will feature more offenses capable of providing a challenge than Florida’s. This is for a very simple reason: Indiana and Maryland will have better offenses than Florida, because the statistics will bear this out, and because over 100 teams in college football will likely have a better offense than Florida’s. This is not new. This is the way things have been since 2010, and the way things will be under current management.
- Somewhere in the walls of Ben Hill Griffin Stadium there is the skull of a sorcerer Urban Meyer captured in the name of generating points for Florida football, and when he died in 2009 from exhaustion the wizard’s last muttered words were a curse upon the productive third of Florida football. That curse will not be lifted until his skull is removed from the walls of the stadium where he is entombed. His name was Daryl. He liked cheap beef jerky, expensive car stereos, and had a flip phone with your mom’s number in it, but not the police’s because he was from Alachua County and didn’t trust the feds. Irony kills us all, even Daryl.
- Seriously, like Urban Meyer wouldn’t room a guy if he thought it would help him win, he would, this point is not arguable.
- The offensive line—now under new management! Again!—could not block Michigan. They could not block Michigan when they got their assignments right. They could not block Michigan when they got them wrong, because on many snaps the Wolverines had men rushing unabated to the quarterback. It’s hard to even say whether Feleipe Franks had a good or bad game for the same reason it’s hard to say whether the Triceratops had a good forty yard dash. I’d like to tell you and evaluate this with you, but something blew it up before I could even get to looking at it.
- It was hard to say whether Michigan’s Rashan Gary had a greater game than the rest of his fellow linemen: They all got penetration, all disrupted whatever Florida was trying to do, and were all basically Rashan Gary. Congratulations, Michigan. If you play a team with a line as bad as Florida’s offensive line is at the moment, you have at least five Rashan Garys on the team, each indistinguishable from the other in meanness, speed, and ability to blow up what an offense is even thinking about trying to do.
- That’s happened before and will continue to happen for some reason. This is laughable, like openly contemptible. Consider the list of teams that with meager resources and worse recruiting footprints and every other curse imaginable have built top 30 offenses out of nothing. That list based on 2016 alone is hilariously bad given what Florida spends on their head coach alone, not to mention the resources surrounding the football program, one that even after all that spending has topped out at a recent ceiling of “sort-of fleshed-out secondary character with an inflated reputation who makes it into the second act of the Western before being killed in a gunfight when he runs out of bullets.”
- In 2016 alone Tennessee, Pitt, Louisville, Memphis, and San Diego State all had better scoring offenses than Florida, teams that recent success aside all have worse setups than Florida in terms of location, talent, and competition for that talent. Kansas State has had a better scoring offense than Florida for years, and probably still does once you account for Big 12 defensive inflation—-this, despite Kansas State playing football in the middle of a literal cowfield with the most polished castoffs of the nation’s junior college system, and deliberately trying to limit the number of possessions in a game to the lowest number possible.
- No one has done less with more. No one. There is no second place. There is first, and then there are Others Receiving Consideration.
- Michigan will be really good. They are a better football team, top to bottom. They even have a better kicker, and a better defense, two things that should especially gall Florida fans because “better kicker, better defense” has been the foundation of any pride anyone might have had left in this football program/shitty mass-marketed pizza franchise. We had that, and against Michigan we didn’t, and that’s how you lose a game where the other team’s quarterback hands you two pick-sixes. Other teams might too, meaning this year looks as capable of a solid 5-7’ing as it does of a 7-5. If Florida no longer even has the solid advantage of the duller parts of the game, then there are no safe or soft spots on the schedule. Kentucky is a danger. I repeat: KENTUCKY IS A DANGER.
- It might not even matter who plays at quarterback. For some reason, Malik Zaire entered the game in the second half, threw some spectacular deep incompletions, rolled out of the pocket and into pressure, and looked very much like someone with very little experience with the playbook trying to function without protection or a nanosecond to read the defense. That was pointless, but so is this offense, so it works. Never accuse this staff of not having a consistent theme for each game.
- Florida football in 2017 is so depressing and ultimately a detriment to my quality of life as a person. I should probably stop watching it, and instead watch Purdue, who at least under Jeff Brohm looks like they want to live and score points and attack people until they have to fight back or die. Purdue football is less depressing than Florida. Consider that statement and the dark depths it illuminates. It’s James Cameron at the bottom of the Marianas Trench looking at amphipods. It’s a bad, bad place. It’s probably where some programs would want to be, but that’s never made anyone feel better about a devolution into New Nebraska or Humid Texas or some other program content with former glories and the management of comfortable revenues.
- It’s not inaccurate. This is a second-rank, formerly first-rank program with a third-rank ability to develop talent, a failson granted an inheritance it squandered on bad hiring and unimaginative strategies. When it faces top-flight teams, it folds; when it faces middling teams, it usually wins and advances to the Capital One or Outback Bowl or something like that. It’s a comfortable decline. It’s been one for a long while now.
- Oh, the defense was fine and was sold out by bad field position granted them by an inept offense time and time again. This sentence is cut and pasted from every summary of every Florida loss since 2010.
- Our coach definitely did not pose naked with a shark.
- This could all be overreaction. I just hope Coach Muschamp figures this out. After all, it’s year seven.
BLATANT HOMERISM: MICHIGAN
ALL HAIL THE FAILSON PROGRAM