Dan Mullen at his Monday press conference faced his first question about recruiting. It came after some discussion over the weekend following the loss to Georgia that the Bulldogs are ahead of the Gators in that area, and Kirby Smart spoke at length about it.

Mullen was asked if a different approach is needed in recruiting.

“We’re in the season right now, we’ll do recruiting after the season, when it gets to be recruiting time, we can talk about recruiting,” Mullen said. “OK, next question.”

In a unusually brief press conference that went about 15 minutes, roughly half of the time that Mullen normally talks on Mondays, several questions centered around the negativity around the program, and criticism directed at him. Mullen responded with a perception versus reality explanation.

“That’s part of the job, it’s 6 inches between a pat on the back and a kick in the rear end,” Mullen said. “In the SEC, you’re either getting one or the other. There’s no in between, there’s no I guess everything’s OK. That’s why I say perception and reality. Perception is everything’s perfect, or everything’s horrendous. Reality you’re probably a little bit more in the middle somewhere, and you’re just trying to figure out how to improve.”

Mullen said he tells his players that when it’s going goo, it’s probably not as good as everybody perceives it to be. When it’s going bad, it’s probably not as bad as it’s going, and there are “a couple things, we have areas we’ve got to improve in.”

Florida dropped to 4-4 with the Georgia loss, and will play at South Carolina this week. Some of the key stats being discussed among fans and media are that Mullen started 29-6 at Florida, but is 4-7 since. What’s more, Florida is 2-7 in its last 9 games against Power 5 opponents.