Pat Dooley’s Back Nine (May 2nd)

The Back Nine comes at you after about as good a weather Saturday you could ask for … unless you were covering the Florida baseball game that started in April and ended in May. Me? I was zonked out after The Bob. Sorry beat writers.

 

  1. The NFL Draft is behind us now and the three Florida Gators who were picked went right about where I thought they should go. Florida is one of only three schools to have a player picked in every draft since 1967 (Michigan and USC are the other two). I know this because Florida reminds us of it every year. The three players drafted were not the problem with last year’s team. The problem was that only three players were drafted.
  2. It’s impossible to predict how those three Gators will do because the game is so fickle. And Gators defensive backs from Florida drafted in the first round have not always fared so well at the next level. I find it hard to believe that Dameon Pierce will not be successful. To get drafted in the fourth round when you BARELY TOUCHED THE BALL all season says a lot about what people think of him. Zachary Carter? He’s got a chance, but he has to understand that this is a business now and you can’t take plays off or miss assignments.
  3. Of course, it could be worse for Florida, and they could have had only one player drafted like Miami and FSU. To think that only five players were selected from the three alleged football powers in this state tells you what happens when you keep changing coaches and never establish a long-term recruiting base. That allows schools with established programs to cherry pick the state of Florida for the best players. That’s my theory and I am sticking to it.

13.     Florida’s baseball team went into the weekend hoping to start a trend of winning a series for, like, four weeks in a row. And the Gators accomplished that. But when you roll to wins in your                first two – one of them a rain-delayed game that started in April and ended in May – you want the sweep. That didn’t happen, but it was still a productive weekend for Kevin O’Sullivan’0s                  team. The hole is mighty deep when winning two of three means you are in fifth place in the East and 11th — that’s right 11th – overall.

  1. This team needs to make the NCAA tournament just to give the youngsters some postseason experience. Heck, these Gators need to make the SEC. Tournament. Right now, there is a game difference between Florida and three teams at the bottom and only two of those teams will make the Hoover field while the other two see their seasons end with the end of the regular season in two weeks. This feels so much like the basketball season. You see signs of life and then they are snuffed out. There should be a major sense of urgency with these players who have two straight road series and really need to go no worse than 3-3 before the final home series.
  2. That was a huge extra inning win for softball not only because it gave Tim Walton his 1,000 career win (the second fastest to get there), but because it put Florida’s postseason in much better shape. By winning those last two games, it also helped their seeding for the SEC Tournament the Gators are hosting. Congrats to Walton and I know about a little surprise he has coming his way, Can’t tell.
  3. Keyontae Johnson has entered the transfer portal and I understand why. I was told a month ago that he was cleared and planned to play, but with his situation in Gainesville, it makes sense to move on. It will be interesting to see which teams are willing to absorb the risk. But it is his life and his decision. Don’t ever forget that.
  4. Just a word on the 27th Bob Dooley Invitational. It was spectacular thanks to the great people of Gainesville. The title sponsors, the gold sponsors, the other sponsors, the vendors on the course, the volunteers, all of the people at Stop especially Christy Gibbons and, of course, the 128 souls who played in the event. There were some minor glitches that come when someone my age runs a tournament (I’m getting too old for this), but the people at Ironwood were unbelievable as usual. Special thanks to Chris Marcum as well. We will let you know how much was raised for Stop Children’s Cancer, but everything I heard about the silent auction was that it was higher than normal. Thanks, from the bottom of my heart to everyone who participated in any way.
  5. It was a noisy course because there was a lot of music coming from the tents and carts. That was a good thing unless you were taking this as serious golf. Here’s what I had on (courtesy of my oldest daughter Jenny direct from Coachella):

* “Melody of Love” by Hot Chip.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O8oUBqyz4q8

* ”That’s How Rumors Get Started” by Margo Price.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bVbYyUu8uEg

* ”Be Sweet” by Japanese Breakfast.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2ZfcZEIo6Bw

 

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