FOUR BITS: Noah, Beal, Pouncey, Cooper

1 » Chicago Bulls center Joakim Noah played the second-most minutes of any reserve in the 2014 NBA All-Star Game, his second-straight appearance in the midseason contest, scoring eight points on 4-of-5 shooting with five rebounds and a steal in 21 minutes. Noah saw extensive time down the stretch for the Eastern Conference, which outscored the Western Conference 87-66 in the second half to pull out a 163-155 victory in the highest-scoring All-Star game ever. After the win, Miami guard Dwyane Wade referred to Noah as “one of the best competitors I’ve ever played against,” noting that his defense played a major part in the East’s success. “In the locker room,” he said, according to the Chicago Sun-Times, “we talked about having fun and enjoying it, but [Noah] was serious. He wanted to win. You could see it in his face. … I’m glad he was on our side.”

Continue Reading » FOUR BITS: Noah, Beal, Pouncey, Cooper

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Four years later, ONLY GATORS is still alive!

ONLY GATORS Get Out Alive opened exactly four years ago on Oct. 1, 2009, and if you had told me then that I would be writing this now, I never would have believed you.

Penning this post just three days after the Kentucky game reminds me of the first big story the website covered – Tim Tebow’s concussion and the will-he-or-won’t-he nature of his return two weeks later against LSU.

Not only is OnlyGators.com still open four years later, it is more popular than ever. The biggest year in the history of the website has increased our lifetime visits to a staggering total of 8.6 million. What you are currently reading is the 4,441st post, and the first comment on this subject will be the 23,305th contributed by you, the readers.

The @OnlyGators Twitter account, which was registered six-and-a-half months before the website officially launched, has been around longer than 99.0 percent of all other Twitter users, according to the social network. It has gained approximately 5,000 followers in the last 12 months and boasts a current following of 23,278. There were also nearly 14,000 tweets sent out in the last year alone.

Don’t forget to Like OnlyGators.com on Facebook as well for updates, links to stories as they are posted and unique content. The website also has a Google+ page and brand new Instagram account that will be updated often.

What started as an idea out of thin air has become something beyond what I ever could have expected. It has been both personally and professionally rewarding, and it would not have been possible without all of your patronage and continued support.

OnlyGators.com has always been completely free, supported solely by advertising, much of it affiliate-based. So be sure to support us by purchasing all of your licensed apparel for your favorite sports teams through the OGGOA Store, powered by Fanatics. You pay the same low prices but also support the website in the process! The same goes for your ticketing needs as we have partnered with TiqIQ to get you the absolute best deals possible to watch your favorite teams play live.

Additionally, if you own a company or wish to promote a product or service, there are plenty of sponsorship and advertising placement opportunities available throughout the website, so be sure to e-mail me directly and alert me of your interest.

In the coming weeks, there may be additional ways in which you can contribute and help keep OnlyGators.com up and running for free. Unlike most independent websites and newspapers, there are no plans to adopt a pay model for our content. However, being a free website for you does not mean that bills are not being paid by us.

I hope you seriously consider assisting us in meeting our financial commitments once the information is made available in the near future.

No matter the longevity or frequency of your patronage, please know that I very much appreciate you clicking on your OnlyGators.com bookmark, tapping the iPhone home screen icon you saved, reading the tweets and visiting the links, or even just checking out the site through my work with Yahoo! SportsRivals affiliate InsidetheGators.com.

Without you, the readers, this website would not exist. Period.

Here’s to another year!

Adam Silverstein
Owner, editor

ONLY GATORS…three years strong, still alive!

ONLY GATORS Get Out Alive opened exactly three years ago today during one of the most news-packed months in the history of the Florida Gators.

October 2009 featured widespread panic about Tim Tebow’s concussion and preparedness for LSU, the debut of the lacrosse program, the arrest of Erin Andrews’s stalker, concern about the commitment status of Matt Elam and devastating season-ending injuries to a pair of Florida football players.

After 36 months of long hours, stressful days and plenty of late nights, it is my pleasure to say that OGGOA remains alive and kicking entering its fourth year.

As I stated last year, I truly never thought that a phrase I jotted down on a piece of paper a few summers ago would not only materialize into this website but become something that has encompassed my life in so many ways.

OGGOA was always meant to be a website even when it started simply as a Twitter account that quickly gained a strong following and provided this publication with an unexpected but certainly appreciated built-in audience of Gators news-craving readers.

Now three years later I’m proud to say that OnlyGators.com has amassed more than 6.1 million visits since Oct. 1, 2009. This officially marks the 3,502nd post on the website, and the next comment submitted will be the 19,306th since inception. The @OnlyGators Twitter handle has added nearly 5,000 more followers in the last 12 months (18,367 total as of press time) and approximately 52,600 tweets have been sent out with the news, information and opinions that you crave.

Many of you reading this right now have been with us from the very beginning. You may remember the website crashing when we broke the information about the team’s Nike Pro Combat uniforms. (Luckily the servers have been significantly beefed up since then.) Perhaps you were a frequent reader when OGGOA’s very first in-depth interview (with Al Horford) was posted in early 2010. You might be someone that joined us along the way or maybe you’re even a brand new reader who stumbled onto the site a few months ago.

No matter the longevity or frequency of your patronage, please know that I very much appreciate you for clicking on your OGGOA bookmark, tapping the iPhone home screen icon, reading my tweets or even visiting the site through my work with Yahoo! Sports and Rivals. Without you, the reader, this website does not exist. Period.

As always, plenty of love and thanks goes out to OGGOA’s contributors, the more than 30 Gators athletes who have sat down for extensive interviews with me, those in the industry who have supported and endorsed the website, the great folks at Acceleration.net for keeping us up and running, and obviously all of my friends and family who are equally instrumental in keeping the passion going on a daily basis.

Albert Einstein once said, “Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work.” Hard work does pay off; this site is a testament.

Here’s to another year!

Adam Silverstein
Owner, editor

ONLY GATORS…still alive after two years!

It’s been two years – two years and six days to be exact – since I first turned the light on at ONLY GATORS Get Out Alive headquarters and, well, we’re still alive.

What started out as a passion project has turned into something that continues to amaze and humble me day-in and day-out. Never did I think that an idea that popped into my head and a name I wrote on a piece of paper back in 2009 would not only materialize but become an endeavor that is continuously taxing and rewarding at the same time.

Many of you started following us through Twitter as @OnlyGators began months before OnlyGators.com ever existed. As our following slowly grew, I hoped only that the website would satisfy the 2,000-or-so people who chose to read my tweets and trust me for information about the Florida Gators.

Just a few months after the website began, Twitter readers were only a portion of our daily audience. I was surprised how quickly the site took off but considering it started days after Tim Tebow suffered his concussion and just months before Urban Meyer resigned for the first time, perhaps it should not have been much of a shock.

If you’ll allow me to humble-brag for a minute, I feel it is worth noting that OnlyGators.com has amassed more than 4.2 million visits since Oct. 1, 2009. This is our 2,500th post and sometime today the site will register its 15,000th reader comment. Our Twitter account has amassed more than 35,200 tweets and ballooned to over 13,500 followers. (Every number mentioned has more than doubled since 10/1/10).

Whether you’ve been with us from the very beginning or just started logging on here recently, I sincerely appreciate your support and dedication as well as all of the time you have spent on this website when you otherwise could have been working on getting a promotion or spending time with your loved ones.

Please indulge me once more as I wanted to take a moment to thank some people and organizations for supporting us over the last two years. Thanks to Brett, Dustin, Rebecca and Jesse from Acceleration.net for keeping us up and running.

Much love to Erin Andrews for her constant support and generosity, and thanks to many, many other Gators – such as Jack Youngblood, Kevin Carter, Alex Brown, Danny Wuerffel, Mike Peterson, Cornelius Ingram, Joe Cohen, David Nelson, Dorian Munroe, Al Horford, Chandler Parsons and Taurean Green (just to name a few) – for opening up your lives to us at one time or another for our in-depth interviews.

Thanks to Mark Wheeler of Rivals/InsideTheGators.com for bringing me on board and helping me reach an even larger audience, and much appreciation to both Abe Gordon from SiriusXM and Marc Ryan from 100.3 FM The Ticket for putting me on the air on a regular basis. Thanks to dozens of major media outlets including CBS Sports, ESPN, FanHouse, NBC Sports, Sports Illustrated, The Huffington Post and USA Today (just to name a few) for either sourcing or linking to posts from the site.

And thank you to all of my friends, family and colleagues I did not name (you know who you are) for your advice and support.

This may be a bit too much of a reflective post considering we are not going anywhere any time soon, but I’ve always believed in remembering how you started and appreciating what you’ve accomplished along the way.

As Steve Jobs once said, “You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something – your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference.”

While there is no blueprint for what I am trying to accomplish here, there are some exciting possibilities on the horizon for OGGOA over the next few months including one project in particular that I sincerely hope will come to fruition sooner than later.

Here’s to another year!

Adam Silverstein
Owner, editor

Buy the brand new OGGOA T-shirt – on sale now!

ONLY GATORS Get Out Alive has decided to sell our first product – a comfortable and eye-catching T-shirt featuring our one-of-a-kind logo. Created on high-quality Hanes Beefy-Ts, our shirt is made of ultra-soft premium cotton, preshrunk to stay true to size and has a full cut that provides a roomier fit.

For more information, or to purchase a shirt, simply click on the image to your left or the link below. 100 percent of all profits will be used to support OnlyGators.com.

Purchase an OGGOA T-shirt!

OGGOA standing strong; The Silver Lining debuts

As some of you may have heard – but most of you probably have not – I have accepted a columnist position with Rivals/Yahoo! affiliate InsideTheGators.com. Starting April 1, I will contribute three-to-five columns each week about a wide variety of topics and subjects as one of the website’s few full-time staff members.

Being hired as a columnist for a major publication is something that I desired since I first created ONLY GATORS Get Out Alive on Oct. 1, 2009. The editor there reached out to me a year ago, but a combination of issues prevented him from bringing me on earlier.

The BEST news for all for you, the OGGOA readers, is that absolutely nothing will change in regards to this website. OGGOA will continue to be independently owned and operated. As we have for the last 18 months, OGGOA will exist as its own entity and continue to publish the same quality and amount of material on a day-to-day basis.

Because ITG is a subscription-based website, only a small portion of the columns I write (like this one) there will be available to read for free. That being said, I have every intention of attempting to work out some discount or added benefit should you choose to spend your hard-earned money to read the rest of my work. Hold tight and stay tuned for that possibility as I explore it in the near future.

Above all else, I cannot express enough my gratitude for the support and dedication that you have shown to both myself and OGGOA since our inception. We surpassed three million pageviews in March 2011, now have more than 9,200 Twitter followers (@OnlyGators), have sent more than 27,000 tweets through that account and have seen more than 12,000 user comments on this site.

In addition to your endless passion for the Florida Gators, your enthusiasm for what we are doing here keeps us going day-in and day-out. Please continue “Liking” and sharing our posts (options below each article), commenting on those you find interesting and letting us know what features and coverage we can add in order to help you enjoy your OGGOA experience even more.

With a new season and era ahead for Florida football and plenty of interesting things going on all summer long, this is as exciting of a time as ever here at OGGOA. Stay tuned for more and always remember… ONLY GATORS Get Out Alive!

Adam Silverstein
Owner, editor

ONLY GATORS Get Out Alive…is STILL ALIVE!

As the old adage goes, “Time flies when you’re having fun.”

While owning and operating ONLY GATORS Get Out Alive for the last 12 months has certainly been fun, it has also resulted in long hours, late nights and more hard work then I could have possibly imagined.

Exactly one year ago, OGGOA was created to be THE stomping ground for die-hard Florida Gators fans on the World Wide Web – an online home base to serve as your all-inclusive, one-stop portal for everything you wanted or needed to know about your favorite team. Looking back on our accomplishments over the last 365 days, I am confident that goal is in the process of being reached and hope to continue providing content that you, the reader, will enjoy.

In normal anniversary fashion, allow me to recount what has been accomplished over the past year while simultaneously paying tribute certain individuals and organizations.

BRAGGING

As of press time, OnlyGators.com has registered 1.75 million total hits. We are also approaching 6,000 followers on Twitter and have just under 2,000 Facebook friends. OGGOA has published 1,424 posts on the website, tweeted 17,096 times (since August 2009), received almost 7,000 comments on the website and have been sent (and responded to) more than 2,000 reader e-mails.

FRIENDS and INTERVIEWS

Since last October, OGGOA has interviewed 13 Gators, 12 of which have been published on OnlyGators.com. We sat down for half-hour sessions with former dazzler now ESPN reporter Erin Andrews, New Orleans Saints defensive end Alex Brown, Heisman Trophy winner quarterback Danny Wuerffel and free agent tight end Cornelius Ingram; we were even granted extensive time with QB Tim Tebow.

OGGOA also interviewed Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Percy Harvin, Atlanta Hawks All Star Al Horford, New England Patriots linebacker Jermaine Cunningham, Chicago Bears safety Major Wright, Montreal Alouettes LB Earl Everett, free agent C Chris Richard, current Florida DE Lynden Trail and NFL scout Daniel Jeremiah.

MEDIA COVERAGE

Luckily breaking a number of news stories over the last year, OGGOA has been referenced, covered or linked to by a variety of major media outlets. We appreciate ESPN (four times), Sports Illustrated (two times), USA Today, The Huffington Post, SPORTSbyBROOKS, NBC Sports, AOL FanHouse, Newsday, the Orlando Sentinel (five times), the Palm Beach Post (two times), the Sun-Sentinel, The Press-Enterprise and WWSR radio for providing us with additional opportunities to reach the masses.

APPRECIATION

As mentioned previously, a lot of hard work has gone into making OGGOA a success. Without the following people and organizations (listed in no particular order) we may not have progressed as far as we have in such a short period of time.

– Acceleration.net (web hosting, site design, technical backing)
– Southeastern Conference
– Palm Beach Autographs and Steve Dodson
– Erin Andrews, Danny Wuerffel, Dan Shanoff, Jeremy Fowler, Brady Ackerman
– All of my friends who have supported and promoted this website

APPRECIATION PART DEUX

While everyone listed above has certainly influenced and assisted OGGOA in one way or another, no one has had more of an impact on us than you, our readers. In addition to your endless passion for the Gators, your enthusiasm for what we are doing here keeps us going day-in and day-out. In fact, between the commenters on OnlyGators.com and our biggest fans on Twitter, OGGOA has grown into a bit of an extended family.

Please continue “Liking” and sharing our posts [below each thread], commenting on articles you find interesting and letting us know what features and coverage we can add in order to help you enjoy your OGGOA experience even more.

I appreciate all of your continued support and dedication. It astounds me each day how many new visitors come to this site and how you have made OGGOA the fastest growing Gators website on the Internet. I am truly grateful.

Here’s to another year!

Adam Silverstein
Owner, editor

OGGOA version 2.0 redesign, technology update

When I started ONLY GATORS Get Out Alive on October 1, 2009, I had high hopes and great aspirations for what this Web site could become. To my surprise, our growth, readership and following blossomed quicker than initially expected. At first, this was a bit of a burden as OGGOA was forced to change hosting companies twice due to high demand for some of our exclusive content and breaking news. Now, it is truly a blessing, one that has inspired us to redesign and streamline the site to better suit our readers.

If the title of this Web site seemed familiar to you at first, that is because it should be. It is hanging over the tunnel to Florida Field at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium, seen by the entire football team every time it storms the field. The phrase stands as a reminder to the players that The Swamp is land worth fighting for, defending and dominating opponents on. Thanks to our Gainesville, FL-based hosting company, Acceleration, OGGOA‘s new design reflects the famous sign and meaning behind it better than ever.

Like The Swamp itself, OGGOA strives to be the stopping ground for die-hard Gators fans – an online home base to serve as your all-inclusive, one-stop portal for everything you want or need to know about your favorite college team. Timely, informative and updated around the clock, OGGOA features breaking news, commentary, discussion, interviews and so much more.

Your support made us an instant success, and your continued loyalty to OGGOA and passion for the Gators has kept us up and running for over 160 days. We hope to continue being your home for full coverage of University of Florida athletics and look forward to providing you with as much insight and content as possible at every turn.

Design – A special “thank you” to Jesse and the guys over at Acceleration (see right column) for updating and streamlining the design elements of this Web site. OGGOA looks better than ever, and it is because of Acceleration’s passion for their work.

Mobile siteOGGOA is compatible with the Apple iPhone and other mobile devices including the Motorola Droid and RIM Blackberry. This optimization allows mobile users to load the site quickly, without the clutter of images, while also letting them read full articles and participate in discussions by commenting. If you are on a mobile device and wish to view the regular site, simply scroll to the bottom of the mobile page and click “OFF.”

Share button – The “Share” button at the bottom of every post allows OGGOA readers to easily distribute the latest Florida Gators news to friends and fans via Twitter, Facebook, Myspace, digg, del.icio.us, etc. Utilizing this feature does wonders in promoting OGGOA, so please do so when you have the opportunity and find a post interesting.

With that being said, Web sites undergo many changes throughout their lifespans (SEE: Web sites We Visit: How They Looked 10 Years Ago). OGGOA is sure to continue evolving as time goes on. For now, we present you with version 2.0 as well as some wallpapers for use on both your computers and mobile devices!

Schedule desktop wallpaper (1280×1024)
Schedule desktop wallpaper (1024×768)
iPhone wallpaper
Droid wallpaper

Sincerely,

Adam Silverstein
Owner, editor

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