There is a lot of discussion this week about what Tim Tebow will do against LSU's tough defense and if the Tigers breakout a two QB system, how the Florida Gators' defense will react. But there is another matchup that needs to be understood; Urban Meyer vs. Les Miles.
Meyer has lost five games in his history at UF, four of them on the road. All of those games were meaningful.
- No. 5 Florida gets manhandled by No. 15 Alabama in Tuscaloosa 31-3. UF allows 24 points in the first half.
- No. 11 Florida forces five turnovers, but loses a fourth quarter lead and falls to No. 8 LSU 21-17. The Gators are out gained 361-206.
- With a division title on the line, No. 12 Florida loses at South Carolina, 30-22.
- The only loss of 2006 came when the No. 2 Gators don't allow an offensive touchdown, yet still lose to No. 11 Auburn 27-17.
Looking back at those losses, there was always the feeling of hopelessness in the final minutes. Even against Auburn, when it seemed like we could have pulled it out late. But each time, we couldn't make the big play or we allowed it (Eric Wilbur still hasn't secured that snap). How can that happen?
Poor execution is the sibling of the big play. But in the four losses I mentioned, UF was out gained 332.5-292.5. Those 40 yards could have been the difference.
If the Gators lose Saturday, it'll be their fifth road loss in ten games. That is unacceptable. And that is where coaching comes in. Every team has bad plays and mistakes. It is up to Meyer, Strong, Mattison, and Mullen to game plan around that. I don't what to hear about how we're too young or that our star wide receiver losing six yards on first down led to the opposition driving 35 yards for a game winning field goal.
This is the team we have and that isn't going to change. That's why the coaches are so important. Maybe since I'm only a year out of school, I have more sympathy for a college athlete than their coach. But last I checked, none of the players are getting $3.25 million a year. So those coaches have to put the players in a position to win. And so far in road games, they haven't done that.
Let's go Urban.