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Archive for Thursday, November 23, 2006

Commentary: Note to Florida coach: Stop whining

If Gators want to play for national championship, maybe they should start winning impressively

November 23, 2006

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A bit of rhythmic advice for Urban Meyer:

Stop whining incessantly, and start winning impressively.

Responding to the wave of public sentiment calling for a national title rematch of Saturday's Michigan-Ohio State instant classic, Meyer climbed on his soapbox earlier this week and politicked for his team to get a shot at the BC-Mess championship. The University of Florida coach even went so far as to say if there's a rematch between Michigan and Ohio State, "All the (university) presidents need to get together immediately and put together a playoff system. I mean like now."

I've got a better suggestion for Urban Cryer: Why doesn't his team start playing like it deserves to be a national champion?

I mean like now.

Like Saturday, when the Gators travel to Florida State. You want some BCS love, Florida? Then go on the road and beat the daylights out of a down-and-out FSU team.

If Wake Forest can go to Tallahassee and beat the Seminoles by 30, then a potential national championship team should be able to beat the Seminoles by 50. If Ron Zook, the man who was fired so Meyer could be hired, can go on the road and beat the Seminoles in his last game as UF's coach, Meyer should be able to go on the road with a potential national championship team and bury the Seminoles.

And let me clarify: We're not talking about beating the Seminoles by blocking a field goal at the end. We're talking about dominating Bobby's boys. Destroying them. Dusting them. That's what a national championship team would do.

Championship teams occasionally show us they have it in them to be great. Not every game, but some games. The Gators haven't done it yet.

Michigan went on the road and beat Notre Dame by 26 points. USC went on the road and put up 50 points on Arkansas. Ohio State went on the road and thrashed Texas by 17.

The Gators have not shown us they are capable of such dominance. Not yet, anyway.

And that's the beauty of it. Opinions and rankings can change from week to week. Michigan is done playing now. The stage is yours, Gators. Crush the Seminoles on Saturday and beat Arkansas in the conference title game, and then we'll be impressed.

Champions put the hammer down. The Gators have let their opponents up. Champions have the killer instinct of a pack of pit bulls. The Gators have had the killer instinct of a pack of poodles.

In their past three games against Division I-A opponents (and mediocre ones at that), the Gators had to hold off Vanderbilt at the end, outlast Georgia at the end and block three kicks, including one on the final play, to escape South Carolina at the end.

The Gators don't win games; they survive them.

Sure, Florida should be commended for being 10-1, but that doesn't mean the Gators deserve a shot at a national championship. A great season doesn't mean Florida has a great team.

Don't tell us how you deserve to play for the national championship. Show us.

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