One Eyed Observations of the Florida Gators. TBG asking; OEW answering.
The Bull Gator: Seriously? The Gators still have a problem with arrests?
One Eyed Willy: We all know the statistics by now: under Urban Meyer’s leadership, there were 30 (or so) arrests of Florida players for one reason or another. Rival fans had a field day with that stat and would point to it to show Meyer’s lack of discipline and a thug-like mentality of our football team. Even UF fans realized that this number seemed rather high and many believed the Gators had unfortunately taken a win-at-all-costs approach to the game.
With the hiring of Will Muschamp, most believed that he would turn the program around and no longer allow these types of situations to occur – at least not on such a regular basis. So, how has Muschamp done in his first eight months on the job? Well, maybe not as well as one would initially think:
• Janoris Jenkins – Arrested in January 2011 for misdemeanor possession of marijuana; arrested again in April 2011 for misdemeanor possession of Mary Jane; dismissed from team shortly thereafter.
• De’Ante “Pop” Saunders – Arrested in May 2011 for misdemeanor possession of the sticky-icky; punishment unknown at this time.
• Chris Martin – Arrested in June 2011 for misdemeanor possession of the herb; transferred from team shortly thereafter.
• Kedric Johnson – Arrested in June 2011 for misdemeanor possession of the wacky tabacky; punishment unknown at this time.
• Matt Elam – Arrested in July 2011 for misdemeanor possession of cannabis; no wait…he wasn’t arrested for that? My bad. Arrested in July 2011 for possession of alcohol by a minor (for the second year in a row); punishment unknown at this time.
Let me first say that I was no choir boy when I was at the University of Florida. But I was smart. I didn’t do stuff in public that I wasn’t supposed to do. If I was drinking underage, I tried to hide it the best I could and certainly never drove afterwards. If I was taking part in Mother Nature’s medicine for glaucoma, I would only do so in the confines of my fraternity house and/or home. That doesn’t make what I did right, but it does make me like 95% of the people who attended the University of Florida.
So I am not going to sit here and bash these guys for smoking a little ganja or drinking while underage. But what I am going to bash them for being ignorant enough to do it in a place where they could easily be caught. They have to realize that they are under a microscope. Gone are the days when players could get away with anything and only have to run some stadium steps as punishment. In today’s world, the public knows EVERYTHING. Mess up and we will certainly find out. So go ahead and be kids, have fun in college and do the things that all of us did at one time or another. Just be smart about it!
TBG: In an interview, Lerentee McCray said one difference between Muschamp and Meyer was that Muschamp treated the players like adults. Thoughts?
OEW: WHACK! That sound you just heard was Lerentee McCray slapping Coach Meyer across the cheek and then pointing at him like the guy hanging out of the helicopter points at the dude trapped under the rock in that Wheat Thins commercial. (Side note: In writing this response, I went to YouTube to watch that commercial and someone wrote the following three comments: 1. If you have a dog named Lucky then you’re ironically screwed anyway; 2. Ginger people can’t hike; 3. People that hang from helicopters are jerks. No truer statements have ever been written in the history of mankind.)
But I digress. I think first you have to realize that McCray is probably a little bit bitter (or maybe sour) about the Meyer-led regime considering he did not get a ton of significant playing time over the last three years. But he is also probably stating a fact in that it seemed to me like Coach Meyer wanted to be friends with the players BEFORE he wanted to be their coach – especially over the last few seasons. I am all for coaches becoming friendly with their players, but that cannot come at the expensive of the players knowing that the coach’s #1 job is to teach them how to be better football players and to put the best product on the field. It seems to me like somewhere along the way, Coach Meyer may have forgotten this a little bit and tried to be friends with all the players rather than more of a father-like figure.
TBG: We play a game every year where we guess who the running back on the field for the first snap of the season will be. It’s not always who you might think it would be. Who it is this season and why?
OEW: Given the new offense we are running this year, I think one of two things can happen on the first play against that stingy FAU defense. (Actually about a million things can happen on the first play, but I am so smart I have limited it down to only two distinct possibilities.) First, we could have John Brantley line up under center and hand it off to one of the running backs and show the world that we are a running team first. Or second, we could have Brantley line up under center, fake the run, and throw it deep to show that we have confidence in our quarterback.
Either way, I think you will see one of the senior running backs line up in the backfield this year on the first play. Out of the two – Chris Rainey and Jeff Demps – my money is on Rainey being the “starter” at the tailback position. I think Rainey will be rewarded for what everyone is calling a terrific offseason and because he has been learning the offense nonstop for the past eight months while Demps has been focused on his duties with Florida’s track and field team.
As you and I both know TBG, being the “starter” in college football really means nothing. I think it was you who pointed out that last year Brantley actually started at wide receiver in one game. But what does mean something is a big fat Newberry bar-b-que sandweeech (spelled like it’s pronounced!). And since that is the going wager that we have year-after-year on this bet, I take this very seriously. So therefore, I have officially made my selection of Chris Rainey for the 2011 season! And hopefully when I win this year (again) you losers will actually pay up for once!