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Discussion in 'Gator Football' started by DRU2012, Aug 7, 2019.

  1. DRU2012

    DRU2012 Super Moderator Staff Member Super Moderator

    Even with the letdown against UK (frankly, after the long streak, I felt that one coming--didn't surprise me) and the late-midseason breakdown/slide that produced the UGA-Mizzou loss(es), with the comeback wins along the way, then the strong finish last year, followed by the "promising"/"more like the good ol' days" recruiting class, I had high hopes heading towards and into 2019...Then came the deterioration of that aforementioned "recruiting haul" (subsequently somewhat explained away with that "we sorta expected a good deal of it so it isn't that big a shock" story--which, after all, still then begs the question, "Then why were these our targets in the FIRST place?"); I'd just about accepted, even gotten over all that and was back to "guardedly optimistic", when we were recently hit with various injuries and behavioral losses. OK, the McWilliams injury is only worrisome because we are unaccustomely already thin at experience in the defensive backfield (the young man himself was generally every opponent offense's target as the season went on: his loss just hastens the chances more promising young underclassmen will now get), but the rash of players facing disciplinary problems due all too often to gender-related physical abuse is worrisome, to say the least. The latest and highest profile example to surface has been Huggins (on ANY level, what part of "Don't strangle your female tutor?" is something that needs reviewing???)--who, along with several others, is now in "playability limbo" because of the incident in question last year. The only reason it isn't worse, that it is still "being addressed" and that he may well still play, is because the young woman refused to press charges and there is apparently a "satisfactory treatment process and resolution underway"--while still under a cloud, from what I understand could still eventually play. As for the other unfortunate such messes currently dogging the eligibility of several additional players who more than ever will be important to our in-season growth and improvement, well, all we can do is hope for the best.
    Headlines somehow implying some connection between the arrival of Coach Mullens and these particular kinds of problems are not just unfair, they ignore both the times we live in AND the recent history of our program--who and when these young men were recruited, the lack of oversight and/or interest shown by MacEllwaine and the previous regime in either personal integrity or eventual team chemistry in building a winning program. I don't believe that is Coach Dan or his staff's problem or approach.
    The main question, from where I'm sitting, is: "What kind of young men are these?" What are they THINKING??? And of course the directly-related follow-on, "What kind of TEAM do we have any chance of fielding if that isn't considered?!!"
    I have a feeling that Mullen and Co. are, if not "wringing their hands" over this very problem, are in fact redoubling already determined plans to consider and apply every effort to answer such questions--and to see those answers manifest in the young men they bring in, and how that comes together to be reflected in onfield play.
    Let us hope that is indeed the case. Otherwise, rather than the exciting season heralding the promise of great days ahead, as we had hoped and seemed otherwsie headed for, this could well be one of frustration, disappointment and uneven play.
  2. Escambia94

    Escambia94 Aerospace Cubicle Engineer (ACE) Moderator

    I think you are over-reacting. I am not saying that the Gators will go undefeated this year or that that they will go 4-8, but I think the team is somewhere in the middle of those extremes. In terms of behavior, football players have been accused of violence against women since the dawn of time, with maybe half of the accusations being real, and half of those being serious. Even Spurrier had his fair share of badly behaved players, with the difference being the microscope that the media puts on football players at big programs.
    • Like Like x 1
  3. DRU2012

    DRU2012 Super Moderator Staff Member Super Moderator

    I didn't mean to imply that this stuff defines our program--in fact, I am both reacting to the disappointing continuation of what indeed has been a reality in college football (NOT just with us of course, either) at large for some time now, AND answering/debating the already extent headlines that explicitly link our Coach's arrival and MORE such incidents.
    In fact, I don't mean to necessarily downgrade our hopes and outlook for success this season either, beyond noting increased losses during spring and summer that, with certain other gaps and losses may further cloud that outlook, might even slow our continued rise. Certainly we'll now, more than ever, be depending on lqargely inexperienced but undoubtedly talented young underclassmen all the more. They'll be forced into the fire, "sink or swim", that much sooner--but as I and others have already noted, many are thought to have more upside in the first place than those they'll replace: Should they come through, blossom and develop fast in the cauldron of competition, it could in fact ultimately bring us further faster.
    So all is not lost, by any means. I apologize if my thoughts on a subject that in particular disturbs and irritates me came off like a voice of doom. Truth is, I am still excited by this team in general, the direction in which we are headed and the leadership and stewardship this coaching staff has brought, built and continues to infuse here. If there is any "downbeat" message intentionally conveyed above it concerns some specific problems and realities certainly not confined to our program--but "OUR program" is the only one I really give a damn about, after all...and lets face it, some of this crap in particular is WAY old, downright mind-bogglingly "stupid to the max", has been with us again and again far too long and just somehow needs to be put behind us.
    Other than that, as always we'll just have to see how it all plays out. The most I can say at this point in the way of hopeful prognosticating is that, especially in the early going, I think we'll be depending more than ever now on our offense dominating the clock and/or the scoreboard (as it once did in its best days)--with everything ELSE that need implies about our personnel, how much and how far it progresses. Above all, I believe in this team, its Coach and staff and the direction all are headed, TOGETHER.
    It'll likely take some breaks our way to say, win the SEC east--but that's NOT undoable; unfortunately, as you yourself imply in your own analysis above here E-, without such "breaks" the season could well end up looking like a bit of a step back as well--but let's face it: Until Coach & Co. get ALL the pieces they are after and "the stars line up" properly around them, to varying degrees EVERY season will look this way at this point heading into them.
    Sooner or later, plans, promise, hope and unity will all coalesce, begin to consistently produce the desired result ON THE FIELD...and we'll be back where we belong--at the top of the SEC, heading into the FFF (Football Final Four).
  4. Leakfan12

    Leakfan12 VIP Member

    I know the school doesn't recruit those kids to be Saints (not those Saints) but come on? Someone needs to tell these kids their spot can be taken away from them.
    • Like Like x 1
  5. DRU2012

    DRU2012 Super Moderator Staff Member Super Moderator

    But by now I am amazed they still HAVE TO BE "TOLD". Again: What part of "Don't strangle your tutor!" even NEEDS reiterating???...or still needs discussion in the FIRST PLACE?
    Some basic self-control has got to kick in at some point; It just seems unfathomable that it doesn't occur to a young man full of hopes and dreams of a football future, a kid with great talent who has already worked long and hard and is right on the verge of seeing it all pay off for him, that at a crucial moment, no matter WHAT the circumstances and/or provocation, that it doesn't occur to him, "Hey--this is one of those times I have GOT to stop, take a deep breath--and whatever anger is seizing me, I need to somehow COOL IT: Turn and walk away."
    No matter what, in the final analysis, bottom line: IT'S JUST THAT SIMPLE AND STRAIGHT FORWARD! SOME combination of "straight talk" and clear rules of behavior and self discipline have got to be instilled--tge point stressed again and agsin, early and often, as you say.
  6. Escambia94

    Escambia94 Aerospace Cubicle Engineer (ACE) Moderator

    These kids are a product of society. Society was never perfect, but behavior has become worse across the board as society has lots its values, shed its traditional foundations, and forgotten its history. Football players are no different. The problem is even worse when you consider how the media and social media are run by mobs of these people.
    • Agree Agree x 1

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