A three-year starter for the Florida Gators who played under Steve Spurrier and Ron Zook, former guard Shannon Snell joined OnlyGators.com in 2012 as a football columnist to provide his unique perspective on the team. He has returned to continue sharing his musings through the 2013 season. Snell, who played in 46 games over four seasons and started 36 of those contests, was named a First Team All-American by Sporting News in 2003 and spent two seasons in the NFL.
[Editor’s Note: Snell submitted his column on Monday, therefore it was written before Florida released official statements from athletic director Jeremy Foley and president Bernie Machen on Wednesday. Publication was delayed due to scheduling conflicts.]
With so many lofty expectations for a team that posted an 11-2 record the previous season and was supposed to be significantly improved on offense with some consistency at coordinator for the first time in years, Florida has completely and utterly failed.
Injuries, uninspired play and undisciplined behavior have plagued this team all season, and it has finally caught up with Will Muschamp in a major way against Vanderbilt.
As much as I’d hate to say it, I just don’t believe in Muschamp or how he’s running this team anymore. Sitting back and seeing what the Gators are producing week in and week out is simply depressing. It’s disgusting and discouraging to watch. Judging from the attendance at the stadium and some of your comments on this very website, a good portion of Gator Nation agrees with me.
Before anyone jumps into the comment section here and points it out, I am well aware that the massive amount of injuries is a big reason why Florida is struggling so mightily this year. The Gators seem to have been snake bitten this season but that’s no excuse – Muschamp has admitted as much.
It’s his job to make sure the next guy is always ready and available to take over in case things like this happen, even if it is some of the younger four-star talents that could play on a number of other teams across the country. “Man down, man up,” right?
Now on the heels of an embarrassing loss to a team that – like Tennessee and Kentucky – has been Florida’s doormat in recent memory, the Gators are on the brink of their first losing season since 1979.
Florida is a two-touchdown underdog this week to South Carolina, will probably be a four-touchdown underdog to Florida State (and could very well get blown out at home in that game while watching their rivals advance to the national title game).
This team has been reduced to something many of us that have followed the program for decades simply have not seen before. What happened in 2013 is worse than anything that was put on the field under Ron Zook.