Monday, October 20, 2003

Preach on Brother.... 10-20-2003

Since has been taken down I thought it would be appropriate to post as much material from that site here as possible. The posts are dated by original publication date.


As I watched the first three quarters in utter glee (except when the camera zoomed in on Zook - can any coach look more frazzled when ahead?), I began thinking about what I would put in this week's note.

It wasn't that hard. Florida has the most talent in the SEC. It's obvious. Across the board, no one can do more things than the players at UF. Not Georgia. Not LSU. Not Auburn. Not Tennessee. Not Arkansas.

On offense we have the best TE in the country, a slew of dynamic RB's, an OL that features a bunch of future NFL picks and some explosive WR's. On defense, the whole secondary will be playing on Sunday's, Bobby McCray has been a monster, the DT's have been a pleasant surprise and ... Channing Crowder!

So you ask ... "Hey FRZ, why do you bring this up?"

Because we are 5-3 ... with a loss to OLE MISS!!!!

How, with the most talent in the SEC, are you 5-3?

Coaching ... that's how!

Tell me you weren't sitting there with your heart in your stomach when Leak threw that last pass, saying this is Miami all over again. Tell me. I was. (On a side note to Tony Bua - you were right to argue the call. Referee Penn Wagers said it was "out of bounds and to the head." Leak wasn't out of bounds and while Bua lead with his head, he didn't have helmet-to-helmet contact so it was either called wrong or wasn't a penalty.)

How can a staff look like a deer in headlights so often? Can Zook do anything other than wave his guys off the field and say "let's go?"

Zook is a terrific recruiter. Zook is a good motivator apparently. However, there is one thing I can unequivocally say about Zook. His team senses his lack of control on the game. The fans sense it. The media senses it. More importantly, the opposing teams sense it.

They all know when the game is slipping away ... Zook can't stop a momentum swing when it's winning time. The other team or the ref's have to do it for him. Some coaches never figure this out. NEVER.

I once worked with the men's basketball team at a Division I school. The head coach was likable, personable and was a great quote for the media. He could game plan better than most and always had great talent. Yet, he never made it to the NCAA Tournament.

He never made it because he never dictated what happened in the game, he was always reactive rather than proactive. Then, when he was ahead late (no matter the size of the lead) and the other team hit a shot or two in a row, this sense of "Here we go again" permeated the arena. We would blow leads of 20 points to inferior teams. We would find horrific ways to throw the ball out of bounds or bounce it off a player's foot. If it could go wrong, it did.

When I think of those two years, I see Ron Zook (except for the game planning and great quote part).

Florida football this year is about passive play. Read and react. Counter what the other team does. It has worked to an extent, but then the "Here we go again" part that follows some coaches takes over. It happened at Miami. It happened as they walked to the locker room against Tennessee. It completely happened against Ole Miss. Only Penn Wagers prevented it from happening at Fayetteville on Saturday. Is it too hard to put another team away?

Oh yeah ... The basketball coach I spoke about earlier ... He got fired.

Jeremy Foley ... are you reading this?

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