Former UF standout Billy Horschel to be inducted in the Bob Dooley Hall of Fame. [Thomas Shea-USA TODAY Sports]

Pat Dooley’s Back Nine: Former UF standout Horschel Earns Special Spot

The Back Nine comes at you on Bob Dooley Invitational Week and I am stressing so be nice to me. I’m just kidding, Gainesville has been plenty nice to me.

10. This is the 29thyear of the tournament and we are once again overwhelmed by the generosity of people. We are hoping we can break last year’s record of giving to Stop Children’s Cancer and we are honoring friends of the tournament Billy Horschel and the late Buddy Teevens by putting them in the Bob Dooley Hall of Fame. I know Dad would be happy to see them inducted and we think about him every day, not just this weekend.

11. One thing I have learned after a long career is that you can never say, “I’ve seen everything.”

For example, I gave you the sixth inning of Florida’s game Sunday against Texas A&M. First, both teams challenged calls at the same time at two different bases. That’s a new one. Both calls went against Florida, but one batter later a pop-up that Mia Williams lost in the sun ended up being an inning-ending double play that I am still trying to explain to my wife.

12. The end result was that Florida swept Texas A&M in three straight tough games (even though the last one was run-ruled). The sweep allowed Florida to finish in second by their lonesome and the Gators will play Thursday in the SEC Tournament at 4 p.m. CT against the winner of the Georgia-Auburn game. Because the tourney is in Auburn, I guess we are rooting for the Bulldogs. Tim Walton’s team could use another couple of wins to make sure it’s eligible to host a Super Regional, as Florida is 10thright now in RPI. We’ll all find out on Mother’s Day evening at 7 when the Selection Show is on.

13. That clutch gene I like to talk about apparently can’t be interchanged across the street to the baseball team. Another series got away from the Gators, who are fighting to stay above .500 to have a chance to play in the NCAAs. Florida has 10 Quad 1 wins and an RPI of 23, but if you finish with a losing record it is all for naught.

14. A public service announcement – you have four more chances to see Jac Caglianone. That is all. There is a chance Florida could have the SEC Player of the Year in both baseball and softball.

15. It was a pretty good week for Billy Napier as he continues to acquire talent. That’s the thing about Napier, that he has been patient in how he built this team and he also realizes that – tough schedule or not – the results have to show on the field sooner rather than later. I keep going back and forth on how good Florida might be. I mean, take off the orange and blue glasses and where would you put the Gators in the new 16-team SEC? You’re not going to like the answer when SEC Media Days releases its vote in July.

16. I have this bet I always make when racing is involved and, because I’m not much of a gambler. it doesn’t come up often. But when I used to go to Jai Alai I’d always box the 2-3-6 because I made two holes in one in my life on the third and sixth holes. I did not bet on the Derby and of course, it was a 3-2 finish. So, in my mind, I won the bet. Where are my Monopoly dollars?

17. The team I root for is dead (Golden State), both Florida teams are gone. I guess we root for Al Horford to get his ring. Or maybe the Pacers because they sent us a basketball signed by the team for our tournament. Or maybe I just watch the last five minutes of every game.

18. OK, the playlist is ready for my six hours riding around Ironwood Golf Course. Hey, if you want to come out and bid on stuff, you don’t have to be playing to win the high bid. We just want to raise the most we can for Stop. The final cut of songs: sports columnist Pat Dooley can be heard on “The Tailgate” along with Jeff Cardozo from 4-6 p.m. Monday-Friday on 98.1-FM/AM-850 WRUF.

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