Monday, November 18, 2013

Football: UF vs #10 South Carolina

The Florida Gators lost their fifth straight game last Saturday. This week's perpetrator was the #10 South Carolina Gamecocks. Coming in as a two touchdown underdog, the Gators surprised many when they entered halftime up 14-8. With redshirt freshman quarterback Skyler Mornhinweg taking the place of an injured Tyler Murphy, the Gators ran a very unconventional wildcat offense for most of the night. It worked in the first half as running back Kelvin Taylor ran for two touchdowns and 90 yards on 12 carries. By the end of the first half, Mornhinweg had only thrown two passes. Could the Gators possibly win this game without having to use their quarterback? Well that answer was a definite no. Once the Gators fell behind, their running game became obsolete and it was up to Mornhinweg to win the game. Considering he had barely thrown the ball all game, I was not at all surprised when he threw an interception late in the game that virtually sealed Florida's fate.

The Gator defense played very well. They only allowed one touchdown which happened to come on a fourth down. Apart from that, they made Carolina kick five field goals. Unfortunately, Carolina kicker Elliott Fry made four of those five field goals. The defense played its heart out, and should be very proud of itself after giving up 34 points to Vandy the previous week. Special teams was below average once again as kicker Austin Hardin missed a 32 yard field goal. This was UF's only field goal attempt on the night and it is still evident that the starting kicking spot is still up for grabs this late in the season. The other special teams issue I saw was a Florida fake punt on 4th and 13 on the UF 32 yard line. Trey Burton took the snap and threw it up for teammate Leon Orr to catch. Leon Orr is a 6'5, 302 lb. nose tackle. It did not surprise me that he dropped the ball. I do not blame him for dropping the ball. His job is to tackle, not catch. However, some may say that he is an athlete and regardless of his position he should still make that play because of his athleticism. I'll leave that issue up for debate.

After this loss, Gator fans were once again fuming and calling for head coach Will Muschamp to be fired. I am not going to lie and say I was not apart of this group. However, I always take a few days to reflect after football games and put things into perspective. Muschamp has basically been coaching with the backup squad out there this entire season. Never have I seen a team plagued by more injuries than the Gators this year. As rough as things seem now, I honestly believe that Muschamp deserves one more year. If he cannot get it done with a healthy Gator squad, then I will honestly believe that last year was a fluke. Apart from the injuries, if Muschamp is let go all of his recruits will be lost as well. He should at least be given a chance to do something with his recruits before any big decisions are made.

I will say this though. Offensive Coordinator Brent Pease needs to go. I know the Gators were limited in the passing game, but they cannot run the offense they ran against South Carolina if they want to beat FSU in two weeks. The Gators have been terrible offensively during the Muschamp era and some type of change needs to be made with staff personnel in my opinion. If the Gators can get some type of offense going next year to go along side this mighty defense, then Gator football will return to dominance in no time.

*Stats accredited to

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