11/29: Florida-FSU post-game report – it’s over; bowl game up next for Gators

By Adam Silverstein
November 29, 2014

The Florida Gators (6-5) failed to get it done on Saturday at Doak Campbell Stadium in Tallahassee, Florida, falling 24-19 to the No. 3 Florida State Seminoles (12-0) despite being given plenty of opportunities to win throughout the contest.

Florida’s loss also marked the last game of head coach Will Muschamp‘s tenure with the program. The Gators will now wait at least a month until they play in a yet-to-be determined bowl game, the team’s first since 2012.

OPENING STATEMENT

“We had our opportunities, certainly early in the game, especially. The start of the game, [we played] extremely well defensively. [We] had a hard time generating much run game, especially early in the game. In those situations when you get the turnovers early in the game, you got to capitalize on them. You can’t kick field goals. We had to kick field goals in those situations. [We] had a hard time getting the ball down the field in some situations. But extremely proud of how we played defensively. …

“You give up 17 points to an offense like that – give Jimbo [Fisher] and those guys credit, they do a great job – you deserve to be in a situation to win the game. I was proud of how we played on third down. The turnovers were outstanding. Offensively, we hit some explosives. We hit [Demarcus Robinson] down the sideline, we hit Brandon Powell early in the game on the stutter in the slot. Silly penalty there with Latroy [Pittman], knocked us out of field goal range. …

“Our guys, that was a good football team, fought hard, we had our opportunities, and we didn’t get it done. You credit that other football team. They did the things they needed to do to win the game and that’s why they’re sitting where they are.”


HISTORY, STATS AND STREAKS

» Florida is now 35-23-2 all-time record against Florida State, and the Gators still hold a 13-12-1 edge in Tallahassee. UF also remains 11-10 against FSU since 1995.
» Muschamp ends his Florida career 1-3 against Florida State. He was also 1-3 against Georgia, LSU and South Carolina, but UF did go 4-0 against Tennessee during his tenure.
» The Gators fell to 1-7 in its last eight games against top 25 opponents with Saturday’s loss. Florida was 5-14 against ranked opponents under Muschamp.
» Five of the Gators’ 11 games this season were decided by six points or fewer (2-3).
» Florida will finish the regular season without ever being ranked in either poll at any point for the first time since going winless in 1979.

NEXT UP: BOWL GAME

With Florida not qualified for the College Football Playoff or the other four bowls filled by the CFP Selection Committee, one must wonder where the Gators will end up in late December or early January.

Following the CFP selection process, the Citrus Bowl will get its first choice of an SEC team, but Florida will not be deserving of that slot either.

Next comes the “pool of six” bowls, which will be assigned by agreement between the conference, individual programs and the bowls themselves. The Gators are one of 12 bowl-eligible SEC teams, likely rated 8-10 in that bunch, meaning they have a shot at falling into one of these bowls, especially considering they are no longer designated in a particular order.

Outback Bowl (Tampa, FL), Gator Bowl (Jacksonville, FL), Music City Bowl (Nashville, TN), Texas Bowl (Houston, TX), Belk Bowl (Charlotte, NC), Liberty Bowl (Memphis, TN)

Though it may make sense that Florida would be placed at a bowl played in its own state, bowls also care about hotel room bookings and local economy stimulation. With many Gators fans already in these areas, they may not make an ideal option if a bowl can get a team like LSU or Texas A&M. UF, of course, would like to play in a bowl as close to home as possible for maximum ticket sales and lower travel costs.

Should the Gators fall out of the “pool of six,” they will either be placed in the Birmingham Bowl (Birmingham, AL) or Independence Bowl (Shreveport, LA).

No matter where Florida ends up, defensive coordinator D.J. Durkin will serve as the team’s interim head coach with the rest of the staff staying on for the game.

NOTES AND QUOTES

» On freshman quarterback Treon Harris going forward: “He’s a tough young man. He’s going to be a really good player. How he’s handled himself through this season has been outstanding, in my opinion.”

» On senior tight end Tevin Westbrook bobbling a red zone pass that became a 94-yard pick-six: “Heck, he’s had some opportunities to make some catches. In that situation, catch the ball. That’s really the message: catch the ball. You can argue about – he’s throwing it in traffic, this that and the other – we put you on scholarship at Florida to catch it.”

» On redshirt sophomore kicker Austin Hardin’s performance: “He hit the ball well. He did some nice things in the game. … Those were longer field goals [he missed]. He hit the ball well in those situations; I wished we would have got them in. I think from a confidence standpoint, he’s done a nice job.”

» On freshman defensive lineman Gerald Willis, who committed a personal foul while on the sideline and was sent to the locker room by Muschamp: “If I was still head coach, he would be kicked off the team. That’s ridiculous.”

» On not being able to get touchdowns when needed: “I knew it early in the game. I knew it coming in at halftime. You got to get seven points in those situations against a team like that, especially as explosive as they are. Disappointed we didn’t get that done.”

12 Comments

  1. 1974Gator says:

    We’ll have an offense that will cash in on those type opportunities and regularly kick Top 20 caliber team butts again soon enough. Enjoy the $7+ million in severance we wasted on you Champ!

  2. Agent_Deadpool says:

    Personally I’d don’t believe this team deserves to go to a “pool of six” bowl and should play in the Independence Bowl. From a marketing standpoint, it would be smart for UF to play in a bowl game sponsored by Duck Commander, as the shirts, hats, and other bowl gear will be in demand by Gator fans.

  3. like rm says:

    When are we likely to find out which bowl game we will go to? Next week?

  4. 305Gator says:

    Thank you for cleaning up the program coach, enjoy your severance pay. I am happy that we get to move on and find someone who understands that we need to have an offense and not just rely on defense, special teams and a kicker.
    That was Clay Burton’s first career TD. That is in line with our theme of putrid offense. We have 2 startting TEs one jst scored his first TD ever, the other had his second key red zone drop that went a long way in sealing our fate. We had a freshman RB lined up as a receiver, a senior receiver who can’t score a TD and D Rob. It is up to the HC to recruit and coach up these players. With this cast of characters no wonder we can’t throw the rock, there is no one who can catch it or score a TD besides D Rob. That is on you coach.

    Hey Adam not to exccuse Gerald Willis but I though Winston grabbed him by the facemask when he ran into him on the sideline and he reacted. Did anyone else see that?

    • Richard Omea says:

      Yes it was clear that Winston shoved Willis by the facemask and the shot he got back was in retaliation. Still stupid as the Refs are sweet on the Criminole Winston and god forbid they do any more than the Detective in the TPD did to stop his misbehavior.

      • roger says:

        He stiff armed Willis in the face and he reacted. For Muschamp to say he would lick him off the team without even watching the video just confirms what many of us have always thought, it’s all about him. Good riddance to a lousy coach that demoralized and beratted his players and caused them to lose many games they should have won.

        • Michael J. says:

          Winston was just trying to stop, that’s reality. i just wonder if reality comes into play for some people. UF is the team we should have expected coming off a 4-8 season. The line on UF was 7.5 wins. Considering that UF lost a cancelled game that was an assured win against a patsy, UF was right there. That’s reality, not illusions like Winston did something to invoke the punk response from Willis. I said earlier that Willis was a bad seed and it was known he was one when UF signed him. Muschamp would not have made that comment about kicking him off the team if he was an upright character, he knows he’s a knucklehead. I predict that Willis won’t last much longer at UF, he’s a trainwreck waiting to happen. You don’t actually think Mornhinweg did something that justified getting hit by Willis do you? If you think that, I think you are not paying attention.

          • 305Gator says:

            I don’t know Willis personally to call him a bad seed or a trainwreck, I don’t think you do either.
            He shouldn’t have shoved Winston but he did get hit in the facemask and that is how he reacted. I brought it up but no one else had even mentioned it. The announcers should have seen it just like I did and Muschamp should refrain from making those comments. He should also refrain from criticizing Westbrook in a public forum and Treon after the EKU game.
            I haven’t complained about the refs before and they are not the reason we lost the game but they did what they could to help the home team. Starting with that roughing the kicker penalty that should have only been running into the kicker to the fanthom holding calls against us and the non calls the other way. With all that going against us we could have won that game with better offensive play calling.

  5. Joseph says:

    Maybe we can guilt muschamp into becoming our next highest paid D coordinator.

  6. Chris says:

    The offense was bad, but you have a 6″4 receiver that was never used in the red zone. The qb has no touch on passes. They hire a qb to be the receivers coach. Whatever coach they get I hope the offense spread the ball around.

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