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BEAT MIAMI

DRU2012

Super Moderator
Staff member
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Has there ever been a season where so much depends on the Gator performance and outcome in Game 1???
At the moment, I have little further to add, beyond :
You've all HEARD and READ the online analyses--how tough our schedule is in 2024 and how our grabbing some kind of "early momentum" is our sole path to any kind of possible overall success this year--where "success" (to hear both Gators and "national commentators" tell it) would be ANY kind of WINNING RECORD (yeah yeah yeah--Vegas has us rated as an odds-on "4.9 wins", where 5 or more wins EXCEEDS their dim view of our results against this schedule!).
SO: There it is. Up to US, this team and program led by Napier and Co., to come out strong and to some extent "STUN FROM THE START"!
BEAT MIAMI, then somehow get to at least 4-and-1 before entering the real "gauntlet" that is the LATTER part of our schedule.
Ya never know, but Miami in the opener really does appear to be an absolute MUST to get things moving in any kind of hopeful start to surprising all who doubt us (including, to some extent let's face it, OURSELVES!).
 

DRU2012

Super Moderator
Staff member
Super Moderator
(Later "SIDENOTE":
It is seversl days later, after posting this thread, that I (not so sufprisingly) have found myself waiting for SOME kind of reponse from fellow Gators regarding all this...
I KNOW y'all have your thoughts and strong reactions here. Is it the long since expanded "loss of hope", or simply the obvious long-ACCEPTED "REALITY" of our having long since SETTLED INTO that very state, irregardless of who the Coach is or has been over the last decade-plus OR the latest comparatively mediocre line up that in past seasons we were about to field as Game 1 approached, that seems to doom us once more? This time it seems it is mainly just "THE SCHEDULE" that is our supposed "insurmountable obstacle".
Does anyone else see even the POSSIBILITY OF REASON FOR HOPE?
THAT was the REAL emotional force behind my coming UP with this thread in the FIRST place!
Which in turn leaves us all with the same "giant elephant in the corner" that has been the "unmentionable main topic-for-discussion" EVERY year as we enter "the dog days" again:
"Is THIS the year???"...Do we NOW have the right Coach and staff doing the right things, finally bringing in the right combination of players and schemes to bring us back to where we all are SURE we can be again?
I don't know; I THINK it COULD be...and the truth is that I sure haven't been able to say it with any real faith or even suspicion I was speaking from the heart; I THINK it is finally different now, that we are finally on the proper "true swing upward" again". It has dimmed in memory, but I do remember how it feels, and this time it is DEFINITELY "an echo of something I clearly remember"!
But "reality" still depends on "people living up to expectations"--everyone working hard, working TOGETHER to MAKE things happen--and for the moment, it all comes together in GAME 1, where the WINNER sets the tone for its whole season!
I cannot SEE past the first one. Not even gonna TRY.)
 

Escambia94

Aerospace Cubicle Engineer (ACE)
Moderator
Insiders will say that fan expectations are not aligned with the Gator administration or the boosters. They support Billy Napier because he finally fixed the underlying problems caused by Muschamp, McElwain, and Mullen. There is a lot more to the creation of winning football teams than cycling through coaches until the team wins a championship. Napier has done all those things. This year he has no excuses for stupid mistakes like sending 12 players onto the field, sending players in with duplicate jersey numbers, not sending in the kicking team right away, et cetera. The administration and boosters will not be happy if Florida loses to Miami right out of the gate, especially if it is an ugly loss showing no improvement. The Miami game will tell us everything we need to know about the rest of the season. A close loss means the Gators need to improve rather quickly because Miami is the lowest ranked of the ranked opponents. An ugly loss means losing recruits who were on the fence about recruiting. A close win means they only won because of the Swamp. Miami needs to be a convincing win because Napier has not displayed the ability to improve in the middle of a season. I will be dangerously optimistic and predict a victory here, which means the Gators win 6 to 9 games. My most optimistic prediction is 9 wins. I would not use my predictions to place any bets. Shitty on-field coaching lost the Gators at least 2 games last season. Get rid of braindead mistakes and this team has what it takes to win 9 games.
 

DRU2012

Super Moderator
Staff member
Super Moderator
Insiders will say that fan expectations are not aligned with the Gator administration or the boosters. They support Billy Napier because he finally fixed the underlying problems caused by Muschamp, McElwain, and Mullen. There is a lot more to the creation of winning football teams than cycling through coaches until the team wins a championship. Napier has done all those things. This year he has no excuses for stupid mistakes like sending 12 players onto the field, sending players in with duplicate jersey numbers, not sending in the kicking team right away, et cetera. The administration and boosters will not be happy if Florida loses to Miami right out of the gate, especially if it is an ugly loss showing no improvement. The Miami game will tell us everything we need to know about the rest of the season. A close loss means the Gators need to improve rather quickly because Miami is the lowest ranked of the ranked opponents. An ugly loss means losing recruits who were on the fence about recruiting. A close win means they only won because of the Swamp. Miami needs to be a convincing win because Napier has not displayed the ability to improve in the middle of a season. I will be dangerously optimistic and predict a victory here, which means the Gators win 6 to 9 games. My most optimistic prediction is 9 wins. I would not use my predictions to place any bets. Shitty on-field coaching lost the Gators at least 2 games last season. Get rid of braindead mistakes and this team has what it takes to win 9 games.
Perhaps it is through Gator-eyes, but every point you make here make sense to me...On balance I would say I pretty well see what's ahead the same way.
I have given UP trying to guage how the "administration and boosters" see Napier OR this team--but I trust emotionally handicapped, short-sighted Gator FANS even less. What does that leave? RESULTS! For all the reasons and regarding all the details you cite, E--, the Miami game, its outcome AND THE STRENGTH of that outcome will indicate a LOT this time--but then it will STILL remain "game-by-game" from there.
We get to 8 or 9 wins and the future begins to open up like a new sunrise, with DJ Lagway presumably about to begin " The Return of Gator Football" to full national prominence in 2025. With Napier and staff leading the way.
Of course, many fans will to some extent miss, or at least ignore, the degree to which it will have almost certainly have been a resurgent Gator DEFENSE that will have garnered that winning record in 2024, should it come to pass.
I don't care what the reasons or excuses expressed are, though--another losing record involving games lost due to poor preparation or coaching will almost certainly result in Billy gone: "fair" or not.
We're all mostly just spinning our wheels now, let's face it: Aside from the interest our current recruiting adventures engender (and the dire hope Napier and Co. DON'T get pick-pocketed at the end again like LAST year--where only a relatively last-moment surge in the transfer portal partially redeemed our HOPES, at the very least), EVERYTHING is already now riding on how we manage against that "terrifying schedule" in the season ahead. I am somewhat encouraged by the seeming attitude of the players and staff, that difident, us-against-the-WORLD, "BRING IT ON!" thing that all appear to be quite happily fitting THEMSELVES for...If they can back it up, a momentum of its OWN could begin to develop and grow in the first half of the season--THEN we will SEE.
 

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