Alligator Army Summer Reading Series: Doering's Got a Touchdown!

This one turned out to be more about video and less about writing. That is probably a good thing now that I think about it.

The play that made Mick Hubert and his phrase "Oh My!" world famous. It also served noticed that Spurrier and Gators had arrived on the national scene and that they did not intend to go away any time soon. It's also one of those plays in that nearly every Gator who was watching it can tell you exactly where they were  and what they were doing when it happened.

With only three (or eight seconds left when the ball was snapped) freshman quarterback Danny Wuerffel threw a touchdown pass to Chris Doering to beat Kentucky 24-20. Danny Wueffel as a result, became the starting quarterback and would hold that position until he graduated, and Chris Doering, who was a former walk-on, would go on to become the all-time leader in touchdown receptions for both the Gators and the Southeastern Conference.

On September 11, 1993 the Gators traveled to Lexington, Kentucky to take on the Wildcats. Trailing 20-17, the Gators had one minute and fourteen seconds to go nearly sixty yards for the touchdown.


 

Danny Wuerffel was fantastic on that drive (even with the incomplete passes) and remained fantastic for the rest of career. Chris Doering fondly remembers his roommate in more ways than one:

"The stuff that Danny did was ridiculous," he said. "You've never seen a guy put up the kind of numbers that he did and you probably never will again. The fact that he was able to do all that and to be such a great student, such a great guy --- the total package --- makes it all that much better."

The play turned out to be the defining moment of not only just the season, but for the program as well. Doering's words (recalled from Spurrier's speeches) back that up, and Spurrier himself reiterated that point:

"Coach (Steve) Spurrier likes to say that was the thing that set us on the way to championships

"If Kentucky doesn't screw up that coverage on that one play and we don't get that touchdown, then we don't win the Eastern Division, we don't win the SEC, we don't win the Sugar Bowl. We don't have our biggest year ever. That one play."

That's exactly right. The Gators would go 7-1 in the SEC that year, beat Alabama in the SEC Championship game (which was still held in Birmingham, Alabama back then) by the score 28-13 to win the first of four straight championship games.

To this day, the play is what Doering is remembered for:

"It was so early in my career and yet that's what people remember the most about me. ' It was such a defining moment for me and for the Gator program at that point in time."

Doering's got a touchdown!


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