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TOYS AND GAMES: Tough Weekend for Florida Football

For the most part, if you were a team from Florida, this past weekend wasn’t a good one to tee it up.

Miami fell behind to Clemson 42-0 in the second quarter en route to a 58-0 loss. By Sunday afternoon, Canes coach, Al Golden was sent packing.

The Bucs grabbed a 24-0 lead against the Redskins only to take a 31-30 loss — the Redskins biggest come-from-behind win in team history. Oh yeah, the Bucs had 16 penalties for 142 yards. Oh my! Speaking about coaching problems, penalties are a coaching issue. Expect Lovie Smith’s seat to grow increasingly hot.

Move to the central part of the state, where Central Florida is located. An aside here. Doesn’t that make sense? If you look at a map of Florida, Central Florida is where it’s supposed to be, unlike South Florida. What part of “South” is USF? At least Bulls coach Willie Taggart still has his job. UCF’s George O’Leary saw fit to retire a day after the Knights lost 59-10 to Houston to move to 0-8 for the season.

Finally, there’s FSU.800px-Georgia_Tech_football_touchdown_flag

Being a Georgia Tech graduate the Seminoles 22-16 loss to Tech delivered a welcome surprise. Fact is, I’ve watched Tech football since I first opened my eyes and I’ve never seen a win like that one fall in Tech’s direction. They’re calling the missed-field-goal-return-touchdown “The Miracle on Techwood” and rightly so. What a bizarre play.

First, Tech blocked the the kick of one of the best kickers in college football. Next, everybody on the Tech sidelines seemed to be celebrating the block that would have sent the game into overtime. Tech coach Paul Johnson could be seen waving his arms for his players to leave the ball alone, only Lance Austin didn’t get that message. He let the ball sit in front of him for a moment, then seemed to say “what the hell” before picking it up and racing down the sideline for the 78-yard walk-off touchdown.

Remarkable.

Finally, FSU’s predicament prompts me to bitch about the system in which college football now operates. The ‘Noles had not lost in regular-season play seemingly since the Reagan administration before they lost in miraculous fashion on Saturday. While Tech is now just 3-5, consider this: The teams Tech lost to during its five-game losing streak are a combined 31-4. In other words, losing to Tech might not be as big of a canker sore as it appears to be on the surface. Despite all that, the Seminoles dropped to No. 11 in the AP poll and No. 15 in the Amway Top 25 poll. I’m not on board with that.

Again, in my opinion, the system needs to be a six-team playoff composed of five conference champions and an at-large pick that determined by the committee. That’s all I’ve got to say about that for now.

bchastain19@gmail.com

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Recently, I had the pleasure of interviewing Bobby Ross. The former college and pro football coach led Georgia Tech to a share of the national championship in 1990 and later led the San Diego Chargers

©2020 by Bill Chastain. Photo credits: Jill Doty Photography