Succinct Saturday night analysis from my friend Jean: "Bottom line, there was no line."
Agreed. They beat us on the line and they made the plays. The rest hardly matters. But that doesn't mean I won't write it.
One of my buddies: Will Florida win the National Title this year?
ME: Just one?
As we shivered in a corner and hoped Tim Tebow wouldn't come back for one more go at us Saturday night, my buddy Joe noted that I, and a lot of other people, expected to lose this game.
"Who didn't think that we were going to get a beating today, who was an adult?" he asked.
True. But at the end of the first half, with little going our way and having shot ourselves in the foot repeatedly, we were in it. We saw that we could play with these guys, that we had the athletes. And it was like we decided to start playing terrible.
And maybe it was more about the cumulative effect of things; the constant pressure eventually causing turnovers, their speed just taking over, etc. But what it really felt like in that second half was that we just decided to suck.
The illegal blow to the head call that nullified an interception. Kenneth Harris' drop. The "WHAT!?" onside kick. The interceptions. Knowshon's fumble. The ridiculous returns we allowed on turnovers. The missed field goals. Anything that happened in the red zone. The pass that went behind Chandler's back in the endzone. Percy Freaking Harvin.
Stafford keeper left in the Red Zone. Brilliant.
ME: Did Tebow score touchdowns in any games yesterday besides ours?
JOE: He blocked a kick in the Tennessee game.
Say what you will about last year's celebration. It was a desperate act by a desperate team. But when you look at the recent history of Gator football, with Steve Spurrier and now Urban Meyer at the helm, I think you can fairly say that tacking on points to belittle your opponent and calling time outs with less than a minute left in a blowout is "The Florida Way."
I can't imagine any one wanting to be involved in it. And, yet, there they are, kicking our ass.
What do you figure Coach Richt and Coach Meyer said to each other when they shook hands at the end of the game?
MEYER: So did Urban Meyer make his point? Did he make his point? Did he make his point? Because Urban Meyer wants to make sure you understand that he made his point.
I was going to write a Pulpwood Smith rant to follow his Florida game prediction. It started with this: This is Andre Pulpwood Smith coming back at ya from Jacksonville Memorial Hospital, where I am currently seeking treatment for ass-pounding related injuries...
It also referenced Urban Meyer's "Weaselly little triangle face," but I let it go.
This was all very, very disappointing, but you have to keep it in perspective. Auburn lost to Ole Miss yesterday. Tennessee is 3-6. Three and six. Joe said he was asking for a Tennessee / South Carolina score all day Saturday, and "Nobody cared."
Texas lost a heart breaker to Texas Tech. The way they played on those last two plays was about how we played the whole second half.
We weren't as good as our hype this year. And then we got hit by the injury bug, and on the lines of all places.
The season is, in some ways, over. We will not have a chance to win the SEC this year. As unrealistic as offseason National Title talk now seems, not being in the race for a conference championship is bitterly hard to swallow.
Knowshon Moreno and Matthew Stafford are both eligible for the NFL Draft next year. The question of whether they'll leave school early will be a large part of the narrative for the rest of the season.
If they leave, they won't have much of a legacy here at the University of Georgia, I don't think. Theirs would be a story of talent, not trophies.
But that is for another day.
Beat Kentucky, Auburn and Georgia tech or quit the game.