The Loop

Gator Bait

Anonymous SEC coaches sounded off on Florida after their blowout loss to Georgia this weekend and it was a bloodbath

November 01, 2021

You’d be hard pressed to find a colder program in all of FBS than the Florida Gators. Thought to be an SEC contender at the season’s opening whistle, the Gators entered October 3-1, their only loss to a little team called Alabama. They’re now leaving it 4-4 following a grisly 34-7 beatdown at the hands of Georgia on Saturday. If you thought trailing the Bulldogs 27-0 at The Swamp entering the fourth quarter was ugly, however, just wait. It gets worse.

After the latest loss, which officially eliminated Florida from SEC East contention, The Athletic spoke to numerous coaches around the SEC in effort to determine what exactly has gone wrong with Dan Mullen’s Gators. They were hoping for an explanation. What they found was a massacre.

“Florida, they just don’t play hard,” said one SEC East coach. “Georgia is trying to rip your head off. They might be up 30-0 and their linebackers are flying up field to get after your ass. Florida is a finesse team. Kentucky plays hard. You watch UF on tape. They’ve got skill but they’re not physical.”

“Finesse team.” Yeeouch. That is the worst insult you can give an SEC team.

“They play with zero discipline,” said an SEC offensive coach from a team the Gators this season. “They don’t play hard.”

“We were more physical and much better than them in the box,” said another. “We were mauling them.”

“We thought going in that it was going to be one of the best defenses we faced,” said an SEC offensive coach. “But they just weren’t physical. They don’t look motivated. Not fired up. No juice.”

There’s plenty more quotes where those came from, and they all echo the same, damning sentiment: Florida don’t play hard. Particularly on defense. In the short-term, that probably means a coordinator change. If Todd Grantham is back as DC next year, we’ll wrestle an actual alligator. In the long-term, well, let’s just say that the colder Florida gets, the hotter Dan Mullen's seat becomes.