Steve Spurrier weighs in on potentially moving Georgia-Florida rivalry game from Jacksonville
There has been some debate in recent years about moving The World’s Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party away from Jacksonville, particularly on Georgia’s side.
However, nothing has been decided yet, even as more people weigh in on making it a home-and-home series.
On Monday, former Florida coach Steve Spurrier joined “The Paul Finebaum Show” and said he understands Georgia’s point of view, since that’s how Gator fans felt back before he took over as coach (via 247Sports):
“I understand what Georgia’s saying now,” Spurrier said. “Back in 1990 when I got (to Florida) my first year, the Gators wanted to move the game. We had lost 15 out of the last 20 there and they were telling me, ‘Coach we can’t beat em there.’ Well I said, ‘Wait a minute.’ We get to take the bus ride over there. It’s the Gator Bowl. It’s on Florida soil. (Georgia has) to fly down. They have to travel a long way for fans. I said, ‘This ought to be to our advantage.’ So we start turning it into an advantage I guess. We had a lot better team than they did in the early ’90s. And then the Gators were happy playing there all the time.
“But I can see Georgia’s side of it, tell you the truth. It’d be very similar if the Gators were to go to the (Mercedes-Benz Stadium) in Atlanta and play Georgia there every year. It wouldn’t make sense. But Jacksonville is a wonderful place. A lot of history there also, and the old Gator Bowl that’s now a different name. But we hope it stays there.”
The contract with the city of Jacksonville is up after the 2021 season, so we’ll see what happens in the near future with the game.
For now, though, it remains in Jacksonville. This year, it should be a great matchup between two SEC East title contenders.