"Damn! All that talent & Steve still beat my ass three outta four..."
"It's easier to win the national championship than the SEC!" - Steve Spurrier
Bianchi's a tool... he's needs to be put on a Greyhound bus out of Orlando. The Gators are a lightning storm & dropped pass away from 7-2 & controlling their own destiny in the East.
...You want to talk about unfair? How about two university teams (football & men's basketball) subsidizing the other 16 or so sports (tennis, swimming, soccer, etc.) on campus. In the real world, If I owned 18 businesses & only two of them produced any revenue, I'd close the other 16.
League Wide, the guy's done more for the conference than anyone else, not just the particluar school he coached. He brought two horrible programs to relevance, which made the entire league stronger. Before he got there, Florida or South Carolina weren't even relevant. Most all the coaches you mention, there wasalready a precendent set. Hell, Alabama had six National Champiosnhips before Bear Bryant got there. UF & SC were flies on shit when Spurrier took them over.
Not sure where you get all of UF's blue chip recruits in the '90s... I don't think Spurrier's ever had a #1 recruiting class, much less 6 of them. Typically, the other two schools in the state (Miami & FSU) outrecruited him in the 1990s, not to mention a few of schools in the SEC. Spurrier is the most important coach in the SEC's history... he revolutionized the game in the South. Everyone had to catch up with what he was doing at Florida and he's one of the main reasons the league is so strong today. Fact of the matter is, he won 7 SEC championships. If he did that now, he'd have played for the Nat'l Championship game 7 times. Through no fault of his, UF's history prior to him arriving was medicore at best and didn't allow him those opportunities. But, he's paved the way for the last 7 NC's from the SEC.
Alabama's had the #1 recruiting class six of the last seven years... and it's not really even been close. Saban's the best recruiter in college football. But, if I had to choose a coach to game plan & call plays on Saturday afternoons, I'd pick the Ol' Ball Coach every time.Also, Spurrier hasn't had the luxury of coaching at LSU & Alabama... or even Michigan State, for that matter. All three of which had some great history before he got there. Those programs were already built & well-established. Spurrier coached at Duke (awful), Florida (a classic underacheiver) & South Carolina (horrible!). Mediocrity was the calling card of these three schools before he got there.And, head-to-head, the HBC is 3-1 against Saban (with lesser talent, too). Now, if Saban could go to some place like Mississippi State & win...
We'll have to agree to disagree on this one MADGators. I think anytime you have to play an in-state rivalry game as UF does every year with FSU, as opposed to one-off game such as UT/OU, it makes for a tougher road. I think four teams in the SEC (UF, SC, UGA & UK) are at disadvantage every year when it comes to scheduling, these teams are the only ones that play in-state out-of-conference rivals, home & home every year (FSU, Clemson, GT, Louisville). That's just like playing an extra SEC game each year. Add LSU as a cross-divisional rival & Bama this year to that for Florida & they have the toughest road once again. Florida will play the last 3 out of 4 schools to win NC's this year (FSU, Bama & LSU). Funny thing is, the one out of those four they miss this year is historically their biggest rival... Auburn.
Yes, Jon... FSU & LSU should trump Ole Miss & OU every time. When's the last time OU or Ole Miss played for a champsionship of any kind? LSU & FSU do it almost routinely (conference or Nat'l)... Fact of the matter is, until UF drops FSU from the schedule (which will never happen), which is essentially another SEC game for them or the cross-divisional game with LSU game goes away, the Gators will ALWAYS have the toughest slate in the SEC. There's a reason Florida, in their history, have never finished a season undefeated... Their schedule won't let them. The one thing you did get right... You won't ever hear the Florida brass complaining about it.
Sorry but you got the Top 2 wrong, Jon... Any other SEC teams play the defending Nat'l Champs (& Heisman Trophy winner) along with Alabama & LSU? Didn't think so... UF has the toughest slate in the SEC (again.).
I see Miles point, the result of the LSU/UF game has kept LSU out of the SEC championship game twice & Florida four times... I don't think you could say the same for the Bama/Tennessee or UGA/Auburn games, even if you combined them. The most equitable thing to do is get rid of the permanent cross division games.
What do you expect when Mark Womack (born & raised in Tuscaloosa, went to Tuscaloosa High & graduated from Alabama) is in charge of making the schedule? By the way, that "mandate" they speak of is for the teams in the west, as UGA, SC, UF & UK have been playing OOC power teams since as far back as the late 1800's, in some cases. Also, over the last 35 years, the entire SEC has played only four times in the regular season against the eventual national champion... and, all of those games have been played by Florida.
The problem with a nine conference game argument is that most of the East (UF, UGA, SC, UK) have in-state home & home series rivalry games that are out-of-conference every year, so those schools essentially already play a 9th "conference" game... UF/FSU, UGA/Ga Tech, SC/Clemson, UK/Louisville. I think if Tricky Nick had to play Auburn, as a a non-conference game every year (along with the reamining SEC schedule), he'd be singing a different tune. By the way, didn't 'Mr. Player Safety' just try & schedule Old Dominion?? If you're gonna talk the talk Senator Saban, you need to walk the walk.
Sitting here watching Tennessee play Iowa in the 1st round of the NCAA tournament & can tell you for certain that this game means more than any bowl game outside of the Nat'l Championship game. "Survive & Advance": Apply that same principle to college football & it would be exponentially better than the outdated bowl system AND March Madness combined.
If we want any truth injected into this debate, all someone needs to do is ask Spurrier...
By Saban & Bielema's logic, Bear Bryant wouldn't have been able to install "The Wishbone" in the '60s & '70s or Steve Spurrier wouldn't have been able to challenge the league with his "Fun n' Gun" offense in the '90s, advancing SEC football to what it is today... The best football conference in the nation! The Bear & the Ol' Ball Coach were innovators, who made advancements for the good of the game, not just their personal agendas (ala Saban & Bielema). The next innovation is STOPPING the "Hurry Up, No Hudddle." These two need to focus their time thinking of ways to stop it, rather than trying to change the rules to slow down progress. If Saban & Bielema want the game slowed down that badly, they should go back to coaching in the Big 10.
8 more reasons for a recruit to choose Florida over any other school...
Muschamp's first year should be stricken from the record, Urban Meyer left a mess in his wake, and by his own admission a "broken" mess at that. The question is, which of the last two years is the anomoly... Last year's 11-1 record when the Gators were relatively healthy (they beat 4 Top 10 teams & were literally a turnover in the end zone away from the SEC championship game) or this year's team, which has seen 25 players miss time due to injury (10 of those season-ending, 8 of those starters)? The answer's easy, it's this year... Got a feeling if the Gators let go Muschamp, he'll come back to haunt them, most likely as a D-coordinator somewhere else in the conference. It's time right now for patience and to stay the course. Foley's making the right move, at the right time. In all kinds of weather...
...Until you start paying for my tickets, Mr. Saban... I'll stay as long as I damn well please. By the way, Miami Dolphin fans & LSU fans are curious to know why you left early?
Been to all 14 SEC stadiums... It's The Swamp, Death Valley & then everyone else...
Apparently, you've never been to The Swamp...
If SOS would have stayed at Florida, he would have already surpassed Bryant in SEC games won & he'd be right on his heels for SEC Championships, too.
In what ways, Jon? I think Steve Spurrier & UF's dominance in the 1990's actually started what you're witnessing in the SEC today.
If you look at it by divisions, I think either A&M & Mizzou could win the East this year. As for the West, they'd both finish behind LSU, Bama & Arkansas.Mizzou is alot like Florida this year, in that their 3 losses have come at the hands of three ranked teams, 2 of which are undefeated (OU/K-State) & one (Arizona State) of which will be playing for a conference championship.