The Back Nine comes at you after a great weekend for sports and some of that included me on the golf course which was terrific except for the golf part.
- It’s been a while since the Gator Nation has been able to be happy about much, but this weekend was certainly a throwback to the way it used to be around here. Teams were winning so fast you barely had time to keep up with them. That’s more like it. Let us not forget that Florida has not won an SEC All-Sports Trophy in three years (one was lost to COVID) after dominating the award for so long. The league has gotten better and it is only going to get tougher in everything when Oklahoma and Texas come on board. And certainly this academic year was not off to a good start with a 13th-place finish in football (thank goodness for Vandy).
- Meanwhile, Billy Napier didn’t win any games this weekend but he did continue to build his first team and his army. We need to come up with a good name for the crew that Napier’s putting together to handle every single detail concerning this football team. (Instead of an army, how about Nape’s Navy?) Every speck of film analyzed, every mother called on Mother’s Day and every nook and cranny of the new building exactly what is needed. Napier’s been so busy, I wonder if he has had time to learn the fight song?
- But really, even though it was a huge weekend for football recruiting. The story in Gainesville was what happened in gymnastics. It was a Happening. A sold-out crowd and a meet that lived up to it being the first ever college gymnastics dual meet to be televised by a broadcast network. For Florida to get two 10s on the last even and Trinity Thomas to complete the Gym Slam, man, you could not have asked for a better way to show off your sport (gather round kids and I’ll tell you about when we only had three TV stations to choose from).
- Florida went 2-0 against Alabama this weekend with the women also winning in basketball. So put that in your pipe. The next two Sundays will be interesting for the women who play LSU and South Carolina in the O-Dome (there is a Thursday game at Kentucky this week). It would be something to see the kind of crow Florida had for gymnastics show up for basketball. But we know that’s not happening.
- I will say this – I think gymnastics has overtaken men’s basketball as the second most popular sport at Florida. If you go by the people who go to the games, it isn’t even close. That said, Florida got a much-needed win over South Carolina to stop that nasty three-game losing streak. I thought what Mike White said was true, that when you bring a team together and rely on the transfer portal, sometimes those players must learn how to win and then how to win at an elite level. These next three games will set Florida up for the rest of its schedule.
- So, when NFL games are blowouts, people don’t get mad the way they do when it happens in the college game because there are so many more to choose from. Which is another reason we need to playoffs expanded. But that’s not going to happen soon despite all that excitement when the first announcement was made. When the Five Families get together, they are looking out for their conferences only and couldn’t care less about the overall health of the game of college football.
- A quarterback draw? With no timeouts remaining? And your season is on the line? Well, once again I don’t have the Cowboys to kick around anymore this season. Maybe I should buy a 49ers t-shirt.
- The Picks did OK this week including the Georgia win to go 3-2 and now 58-46-3 on the year with the Rams game tonight still to come. And I won an over/under on the Cowboys/49ers game. Yay, me.
Here are this week’s three games that Dr. Football can pick because we still have that one outstanding result:
* The Bengals are not the Bangles or the Bungles anymore. They won a playoff game! Yippee! I think they win another and get 3.5 points to boot.
* The 49ers are getting 5.5 points at Green Bay and I like the Packers.
* Buffalo is getting a measly two points at Kansas City. I like the Bills, I really do. Just not to win this game.
- One thing I like that I never thought I would is music on the golf course. It relaxes me when I chunk a chip shot. Here’s a playlist for the next time you hit the links:
* The acoustic version of “Everlasting Love” by U2. Heard it for the first time the other day and it is awesome.
* ”Ventura Highway” by America.
* ”How Soon Is Now” by The Smiths.
You listen to these three songs and get back to me.