What a difference one year makes.
As any Gator fan that watched the miserable performances of 2017 can attest, things were not very pretty. The team limped into a 4-7 finish without a bowl invitation. To illustrate just how bad things were, most fans were actually happy that the team wasn’t going bowling in 2017. They couldn’t stand to see their beloved team play in the condition that they were in anymore.
It didn’t take very long for the right coaching hire to change all of that. In year one, Dan Mullen restored much more than sound football in Gainesville – he made giant strides at bringing the old standard back. The “Gators Standard”, to be exact.
Let’s take a look at a few highlights of the incredible orange and blue turnaround in 2018:
Just win baby, win
As we mentioned earlier, last season’s 4-7 season was one of the worst in the history of Florida football. While Jim McElwain didn’t get to coach all of the 2017 games before being relieved of his duties, that 4-7 team was indeed the roster that he built. In one year’s time, Dan Mullen took the almost identical roster and finished an arguably tougher schedule with a 9-3 record. Talk about a culture change.
Setting records in Mullen’s year one
Florida actually blew out some teams on the road so badly that their fans were clearing out in the third quarter. How long has it been since Gator fans got to see that? This 2018 team even set a record for the most points ever scored in Knoxville, as they routed Tennessee.
Florida went undefeated in true road games, something not done since Muschamp’s 2012 squad.
After the major victory over the LSU team that was ranked number five overall at the time, Florida was considered among the potential teams to break into the college football playoff. While that did not happen, thanks in large part to a hard fought Georgia loss, it is truly incredible that Dan Mullen had this team in the conversation year one.
Jordan Scarlett may have said it best:
— Gators Football (@GatorsFB) November 26, 2018
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