Florida Full Strength vs Depleted

Discussion in 'Swamp Gas' started by Wormwood56, Oct 23, 2013.

  1. Wormwood56
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    Wormwood56 VIP Member

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    The hysteria around here is mind-boggling. Florida's program has been strong for over 30 years now, and a definite pattern has developed.

    When Florida has fewer than 12 new starters:

    Year---------------W/L - bowl game

    1983...........................8-2-1
    1984...........................9-1-1
    1985...........................9-1-1
    1990...........................9-2-0
    1991.........................10-1-0
    1993.........................10-2-0
    1994.........................10-1-1
    1995.........................12-0-0
    1996.........................11-1-0
    1997...........................9-2-0
    1998...........................9-2-0
    2000.........................10-2-0
    2001...........................9-2-0
    2005...........................8-3-0
    2006.........................12-1-0
    2008.........................12-1-0
    2009.........................12-1-0
    2012.........................11-1-0

    When Florida either has 12 or more new starters or plays on an unlevel playing field due to sanctions:

    Year---------------W/L - bowl game

    1986...........................6-5-0
    1987...........................6-5-0
    1988...........................6-5-0
    1989...........................7-4-0
    1992...........................8-4-0
    1999...........................9-3-0
    2002...........................8-4-0
    2003...........................8-4-0
    2004...........................7-4-0
    2007...........................9-3-0
    2010...........................7-5-0
    2011...........................6-6-0
    2013...........................?-?-?

    The WORST year we had when the team was at full strength was 2005, with an 8-3 record. The reason for this was, IMO, Meyer's dogged insistance to institute the sprad option offense to players completely unsuited for it.

    Every other year, we lost two or fewer games. How many other teams can say this, over this period of time? You could probably count them on the fingers of one hand and have a couple of fingers left over.

    When we struggle with a dozen or more new starters or have sanctions levied on us that deprived us of talent, combined with inevitable injury issues, however, we struggle.

    Anyone who realizes this should have expected an 8-4 season this year, and possibly worse if we had key injuries. It is an a priori fact.

    For all of you that want to hang the head coach for struggling this year, take note that Galen Hall, Steve Spurrier, Ron Zook and Urban Meyer couldn't have seasons with fewer than 3 losses under the circumstances Muschamp is working under in 2011 and this year.

    Experienced talent is more critical to success than raw 5-star talent out of high school, or coaching, for that matter.

    If Steve Spurrier couldn't do better than 8-4 with an outstanding senior quarterback in 1992, or Urban Meyer couldn't do better than 9-3 with the freaking Heisman Trophy winner at QB (compare Florida in 2007 with Auburn in 2010 and Texas A&M in 2012), then why should Muschamp be expected to field a strong team THIS year.

    I fully realize that it isn't just the W/L column that strikes fear in Gator hearts. The offense is truly hideous. We may finish 6-6 or 7-5 again, but it isn't because of Muschamp's poor coaching. Although it seems to some that we won with smoke and mirrors in 2012, the 2012 season was one of our STRONGEST 1-loss seasons, as we beat four teams with ten+ wins.

    Year-------------W/L Record vs Teams with 10+ wins - bowl games

    2012...............................4-1
    2009...............................0-1
    2008...............................2-0
    2006...............................2-1
    1996...............................3-1
    1995...............................2-0
    1985...............................1-0
    1984...............................0-0

    For all of you that want to throw Muschamp under the bus and believe that we wouldn't have done any better if he didn't have the problems he had, well, you are ignorinig history. Granted, if he goes 6-6 again, he would have done worse than Hall, SOS, Zook and Meyer when they were saddled with the same constraints. A losing record would be alarming.

    But I would cut him some slack for this year with all the losses. Looking at the roster, we look to lose only 5 starters in 2014. Given the 30 year history of Florida, losing 5 starters would give us that 10-2 record that many have come to expect, and Muschamp will STILL be the coach.

    So be of good cheer! We haven't hit bottom. Not even CLOSE...:happy:
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  2. UFreak
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    UFreak Well-Known Member

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    Good perspective. I really do think you touched on some important points. That includes the mention of the offense. UF fans have become accustomed to seeing successful offense for some time. It has been incredibly frustrating to not have a good offense for such a stretch of seasons. It makes it even worse that FSU's, Miami's, Georgia's and Alabama's offenses look so good.
    Unless you are a diehard, like me, I can imagine that watching the Gators play is incredibly boring.
  3. GatorStang
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    GatorStang Active Member

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    This is where is stops for me. It's NOT the W/L column, it's the quality of product being put on the field ie. we look completely incompetent. Now, not only did we look incompetent against Mizzu with a RS Freshmen at QB, but then team looked to have given up, that is not good.

    I can't remember a time when a team looked so incompetent. Yes, we lost games when we have 12+ new starters with several coaches, but were those teams incompetent? No. I'm not throwing Will under the bus or calling for his head right now, but we all know that something is not right and it's not JUST playing new guys. It's definitely a coaching issue IMO.
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  4. broncogators
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    broncogators Member

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    sadly injuries are part of the game, maybe its time to hire a new S&C coach... this year has been terrible
  5. orangeblueorangeblue
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    orangeblueorangeblue Well-Known Member

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    S&C can't do much about broken bones and torn ligaments, honestly.
  6. gator07
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    gator07 Well-Known Member

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    You are a table-making machine
  7. Nicho
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    Nicho Well-Known Member

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    My thought as well.
  8. Wormwood56
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    Wormwood56 VIP Member

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    One of the perspectives I have gained from being a Virginia Tech fan for the last decade is that I am well accustomed to seeing teams win 10+ games a year with hideous offenses. It served as a reminder of the Gator teams I saw before Spurrier arrived. The offenses of Pell's/Hall's great teams were fundamentally similar to the teams of the last three years. The difference, of course, is that at the end of the long drives, we would actually - y'know - SCORE. Those great Gator teams didn't drop half a hundred on people, but they WERE effective, and our great defenses of the day simply choked the life out of our opponents.

    I'll grant you that the game was slightly different back then, no doubt. But the fundamental approach.

    What appears to be a matter of incompetence, however, is often masked by the inexperience of the players. yes, coaching plays a role, but generally, as history shows, it is experienced talent.

    It has been well over 30 years since we had a mediocre season with a full strength team. If Muschamp goes 8-4 or 7-5 next year, then his seat should be red hot, because in this case your assertion may be a correct one. I am not confident that it applies this year, however.
  9. Wormwood56
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    Wormwood56 VIP Member

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    I have to be. Not being a recognized expert, I have to support my assertions with something factual, otherwise I would feel like an idiot spouting off things that I may be ignorant of.
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  10. cpgator
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    cpgator Active Member

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    There are lies, damned lies, statistics and things that entitled football fans want to believe when their team isn't meeting their unrealistic expectations. Our defense in 2007 looked inept until they were kicking people's asses in 2008. In 1992 SOS and Shane Matthews started out ranked #4. In games 2 & 3 they lost to a UT team that finished 9-3 and a Miss St team that finished 7-5. The combined score of those two losses was 61-20. Clearly those two games were the beginning of the end of UF football.
  11. Wormwood56
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    Wormwood56 VIP Member

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    Exactly. They were blips on the horizon. The 1992 team had Spurrier's worst offense and worst defense of his era here. Why? Many of those starters recruited by Hall were out , and Spurrier's kids were still too green. It often happens in the third or fourth year to most coaches, even the Sainted Nick...

    It was the same in 2007. The defense was as green as a pool table. Charlie Strong was the coach, and he didn't all of a sudden suck as a DC. But then again, in 2003 and 2004, our defenses were also green as could be, and Strong told folks that he was playing his players conservatively on defense to eliminate the big play. In South Carolina, Strong was acidly referred to as "3d and Long Strong," and they were not unhappy to see him leave. The problem was that Strong played bend but not break in order to keep the plays in front of his safeties, but often got burned, particularly poor Corey Bailey.

    Fans didn't see this, of course. They were too busy blaming Zook for micromanaging Strong...:D
  12. UFFL
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    UFFL Well-Known Member

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    It's really appreciated and I'm always happy to see the stats.
  13. Colin
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    Colin Active Member

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    My perspective on the offense's struggles over the past few years:

    Post Tebow we were supposed to have Cam Newton but instead got Brantley, who Meyer tried to shoehorn into an offense that he was ill-suited to run.

    Muschamp inherited an offense built for Meyer's scheme. Brantley was the only player really suited for the style of offense Muschamp wants to run, but the O-line, RBs and WRs were not. That year Brantley gets hurt, and the back-ups must play as freshmen.

    Last year Driskel wins the job, even though Brisset might have been more suited to the Muschamp philosophy, because coach knew our line couldn't protect a pocket passer and wanted to use a QB who could scramble away from pressure. We went 11-2 with a lot of ugly wins that could have easily been losses, and the reasons were numerous (Driskel was still raw, the O-line had injuries mount as the season progressed, we had no WR threat).

    This year the O-line seemed prepped to improve, but then we lose our starting RT and have to replace him with a guard and a raw JUCO player. Our starting RG is playing with one arm, essentially, but he has to play because Moore has to play tackle and Dunker left. I feel like if we had Green and Dunker this year that we'd have been better on the O-line, but maybe that's just pie in the sky. Anyway, we lose a starting WR before the season, our starting QB in game 3, and now our starting QB is hobbled to some degree with a shoulder injury. We have poor depth on the O-line, so I don't see protection improving when it comes to the passing game until we get healthier and more numbers at that position.

    I hope coach has a stellar OL recruiting class some in, with one or two players who can contribute as freshmen.
  14. xenythx
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    xenythx Well-Known Member

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    The issues with the 2007 defense were understandable - we had a young inexperienced secondary. The continuing issues with this offense are perplexing.

    Upperclassman QBs, 3-4 serviceable backs, a quality fullback, an experienced albeit thin offensive line, and three upperclassman WRs. How are we this terrible? Youth is not the excuse on the offensive side of the ball.
  15. Wormwood56
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    Wormwood56 VIP Member

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    A good question. I am not sure if youth is the excuse or not. this is why if Muschamp has an experienced team and still struggles next year (not talking about offense, just general struggles resulting in losses), then I can see him being gone.
  16. sevmonster
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    sevmonster Active Member

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    Mizzou has 8 fifth year seniors starting. Not surprising they are playing well.
  17. GatorLaw
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    GatorLaw Well-Known Member

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    It's not just that the offense is bad. It's that the offense has been bad since 2010. And the reasons tend to be the same - poor OL, o.k. but not great QB; lack of game-breakers. And it shows no signs of getting better, in fact lately the offense seems to have regressed (one TD in two games is Gator football?) I don't know how much we're supposed to happily accept but it's understandable that many are beyond that point.

    I don't think WM should be fired, I still think that over the long haul he'll do fine. I do think WM should take a long, hard look at our OC and OL coach when the season's over.
  18. OaktownGator
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    OaktownGator Well-Known Member

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    From a recruiting standpoint, we appear headed in the right direction - great skill position recruiting class last year, and appear to be headed towards another one this year. Five OL last year and will hopefully get five more this year. And a stud QB.

    The real issue is the poor performance from our OL. You can't run any kind of offense when the other team owns the LOS. TBH, while injuries to Green and Halapio really hurt, I think we should have enough experienced OL bodies to do something functional on the OL. We certainly shouldn't have so many occurrences of poor communication / missed assignments on blitzes and stunts.
  19. jaxgator1991
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    jaxgator1991 Well-Known Member

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    well if you knew anything about our S&C coach you would never want to let this guy go. he is one of the best in college football. i know it seems like a long time ago, but last year the way that team put games away in the second half was incredible. i don't think that team allowed a 4th quarter point in an SEC game until late in the conference season. people need to be realistic before posting such ridiculous things. football is a contact sport, injuries happen and no S&C coach can prevent the injuries that occur. come on man... do you sit around and say "man, if driskel had done more ankle rolls then maybe it would not have snapped when that 250+ pound player fell on it" ridiculous.
  20. gatorchamps0607
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    gatorchamps0607 Always Rasta

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    Don't always agree or get along with ol' Worm but this is exactly what I've been wanting to do/say but just too lazy to do it. Without the key injuries, were in the running for a Natty right now. Maybe we don't win it and maybe with Dunker/Green our OL still sucks, but I'd bet we beat at least Mizzu and Miami, possibly LSU too.

    Kudos to you worm.

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