When Florida succeeded in scoring a point (38 of them, even) in Week 5 against Vanderbilt, the Gators tied Michigan atop the FBS record books. It was their 365th game in a row without getting shut out, tying a Wolverines’ record from 1984 to 2014. UF’s last shutout was a 16-0 loss at No. 9 Auburn on Oct. 29, 1988.
The Gators then scored a field goal in the first half against LSU Saturday, officially setting the record.
This is not that meaningful a record, but it’s Florida, so we’re celebrating it.
Last season, 34 of 873 FBS games — or 3.9 percent — involved a shutout, and 15 of those teams getting blanked were FCS teams. Power 5 teams got shut out just nine teams, and four of those were just Rutgers. College football is an offense-first sport, and it’s not that hard to avoid a donut if you’re even a little bit talented. Doing it 366 times in a row is impressive, but it’s also no biggie.
With that out of the way, this is amazing. Think about what the streak has survived:
- An entire Ron Zook coaching tenure
- An entire Will Muschamp coaching tenure
- More or less every Florida QB since Tim Tebow
- Florida’s stadium literally losing its “O” in a hurricane (as well as its D)
- Several games against Alabama
- A handful of three-point outings
- A literal two-point game in 2015, when UF lost to Florida State 27-2
Florida has not played an enjoyable offensive football game since approximately 2009.
This is a team that plays extremely unenjoyable offense at almost all times, unless it’s facing a mismanaged defense that has too few defensive backs on the field for the last play of the game when the only thing Florida can do to hurt it is throw a desperation pass, or a mismanaged defense that literally forgets to cover open receivers.
The Gators have talented offensive players all over the field (and on their suspended list), but they usually look disjointed and are not fun to watch. Florida is 81st in scoring offense so far this year. It was 107th last year, 100th the year before that, 72nd the year before that, 114th the year before that, etc. etc.
If this were any other team in the country setting this cool but not that mind-boggling record, it’s unlikely anybody would care. This blog post probably wouldn’t exist.
But because it’s the most offensively challenged blue-blood program in the country setting this obscure record, I’m gator-chomping my way to my neighborhood liquor store and buying some champagne.