First Decade of the New Millenium Awards

Sorry about the lack of posts lately, but I’ve been really busy lately. Today, though, I did something that I never thought was possible for Gator receivers to do under Steve Addazio: catch something.

Like an awful cold.

Whatever.

This means that I have some time to put some thoughts into your minds going forward.

Before we go forward, though, let’s take a look back at the last decade and crown some people, teams, and universities for their accomplishments.

And this is a nationwide thing, not just a UF thing.

Biggest Shocker

Appalachian State 34, Michigan 32 (2007)

A preseason top 5 team fell victim to the greatest upset in the school’s history when Corey Lynch blocked what would have been the game winner and the Mountaineers hung on for a stunner in the Big House.

The rest of the Top 5: Texas 41, USC 38 (2005), Florida 41, Ohio State 14 (2006), Ole Miss 31, Florida 30 (2008), Boise State 43, Oklahoma 42 (2006)

Greatest Game

Boise State 43, Oklahoma 42 (2006)

All seemed lost for BSU a number of times, the last one being a 4th and forever with time running out, but a hook and lateral for a TD tied it at 35 and forced OT, where Ian Johnson took a statue of liberty for the winning two point conversion.

The rest of the Top 5: LSU 28, Florida 24 (2007), Ohio State 31, Miami 24 (2002), Auburn 28, Alabama 27 (2010), Florida 31, Alabama 20 (2008)

Greatest Coach

Urban Meyer (Bowling Green: 2001-02, Utah: 2003-04, Florida: 2005-10)

4 BCS Bowl victories, 2 national championships, 3 conference championships, the winningest senior class ever, a Heisman trophy winner, a #1 overall draft pick, and 17-2 against his rivals at Florida. Sorry, Saban, you’re close, but you’re still a year away.

The rest of the Top 5: Nick Saban (LSU, Alabama), Pete Carroll (USC), Bob Stoops (Oklahoma), Mack Brown (Texas)

Greatest Player

Tim Tebow (Florida: 2006-2009)

48-7 record, 2 national championships, 3 BCS Bowl wins, 3 SEC East Championships, 2 SEC Championships, a Heisman trophy, a 3 time Heisman finalist, and an unmatchable willpower to win and to make his teammates better.

The rest of the Top 10: Vince Young (Texas), Matt Leinart (USC), JaMarcus Russell (LSU), Percy Harvin (Florida), Colt McCoy (Texas), Michael Crabtree (Texas Tech), Dexte McCluster (LSU), Ken Dorsey (Miami), Cam Newton (Florida, Auburn)

Most Explosive Player

Devin Hester (Miami: 2003-05)

An explosive kick/punt returner for Miami, Hester was also a great receiving threat, as well as a very effective cornerback. As much as I’d love to put a Gator here, Hester gets the nod as the most explosive player of the decade.

The rest of the top 10: Percy Harvin (Florida), Michael Crabtree (Texas Tech), Brandon James (Florida), CJ Spiller (Clemson), DeSean Jackson (Cal), Knowshon Moreno (Georgia), Frank Gore (Miami), Jeremy Maclin (Missouri), Marshawn Lynch (Cal)

Best Defense

Miami 2001

There was simply no way to attack this team. Try going deep, and Ed Reed would pick it off. Run, and get buried for a huge loss by a monstrous front 7. This team used its defense to bulldoze its way to a national championship win over Nebraska.

The rest of the top 5: Alabama 2009, Florida 2006, Miami 2002, TCU 2010

Best Offense

Auburn 2010

From the first year of the decade we go to the last, and the team that lived and died by its offense en route to a national championship this past season wins the crown. Michael Dyer owned the ground, and Cam Newton had a dizzying array of weapons to choose from in the air.

The rest of the top 5: Oklahoma 2008, Florida 2008, Texas Tech 2008, Oregon 2010

Best Team

Florida 2008

Yes, they had a loss. A freakish one point loss to a team that turned out to be much better than people thought, the 9-4 Cotton Bowl Champions, Ole Miss. A loss that inspired the Gators to pound on ranked teams with scores like 56-6, 49-10, 45-15, 51-21, and win the BCS Championship.

Dumbest Winning Coach

Les Miles (LSU)

He was a genius for gambling and winning 5 times against Florida in 2007 on 4th down, en route to a BCS Championship. Not so much in 2009, where Addazio-esque clock mismanagement cost him a Magnolia Bowl win. And then last year, with the debacle against Tennessee, to the bounce pass fake field goal against Florida, to the tight end reverse against ‘Bama, this guy never can stay away from controversy.

 

17 thoughts on “First Decade of the New Millenium Awards

  1. Just wondering why the 2007 Florida offense wasn’t considered in the top 5 of the decade? I thought they were better statistically than 08? But not my list it is a good one too.

  2. Yeah I actually scrolled down here to make the same comment as well. Our 2007 offense rivaled the ’96 offense in many regards, and was much better than in 2008 when they could play a bit more conservatively thanks to the defense.

    Surprised to not see USC anywhere on that list as well.

    Good list overall though.

  3. Because where was the 07 offense in losses to Auburn and LSU? A team that puts 59 on Tennessee- the eventual SEC East winner- can only put up 17 and 24, respectively? That offense was too inconsistent to get my vote.

  4. The problem with the logic is Saban did it at two different schools, with 2 years away from the college game.

    Then there’s Saban’s record vs Meyer.

  5. Disagree with Miami 2001 as best defense as well.

    They had a great defense, no doubt. However, the 2001 team’s greatest strength was depth; Frank Gore was 3rd string RB, Kellen Winslow was the 2nd string TE etc.

    Miami was dominant by trotting out its reserves and pummeling teams into submission, controlling the tempo of the game since there was no appreciable dropoff when the reserve units came in.

    That was too much to handle for every team they faced.

    Frank Gore, the team’s 3rd back, averaged 9 YPC.

  6. Alabama 2009

    Let’s remember, Miami was still playing in the mighty Big East during that season.

    Not to try to lesson what they did, but Caners need to remember what conference the “Miami Juggernaut” was getting “beat up” playing against.

    Even though they played in the Pac 10, I’d even give thought to USC 2004 and LSU 2003.

    TCU I can’t count because they play in the MWC. I know the MWC was awesome to watch, but it’s the MWC – 2 good opponents plus a decent OOC does not a schedule make.

    Could TCU beat any team in the country on any given Saturday ? Darn straight. Could they go through a grind like the SEC and still put forth those results ? As an MWC team, not likely. However, now that they will be a BCS school and have access to BCS talent, all of that might change.

  7. Hang on, you make fun of the Big Least- deservedly so- yet you say TCU will be in a BCS conference- you make fun of the conference at first then praise it. I feel sorry for TCU. They’ll play a bunch of cupcakes, win the Big Least then get steamrolled in a BCS Bowl game in their first REAL BCS game.

  8. I did not praise the Big East.

    I said TCU will have access to BCS talent.

    Crappy conference or not, when TCU joins a BCS conference, they’ll be joining the conference with the easiest path to a title game.

    Winning it all does matter to a lot of kids, but exposure matters as much. By sheer dint of being in a BCS conference, TCU’s ability to attract talent will skyrocket.

    They are already is the most talent rich state in the country. Yeah, they’ll have share with Texas, A&M and Oklahoma, but if you’re a kid with dreams of winning the title and going to the NFL, it’ll be hard to resist a pitch from TCU, Big East or not.

    The fact of the matter is, at Texas, you still have to go through a round robin now, playing every team in the big 12, including A&M, Oklahoma, Ok State, Kansas (down long under Turner Gill?) and K State (Bill Snyder) every year now.

    The path to glory got a whole lot tougher for Texas and Oklahoma.

    Gary Patterson merely has to point to the fact that the Big East IS a BCS conference thus AQ, and they have the easiest path to the title game. Don’t think for one second that isn’t going to sway some of the kids who would have gone to OU, UT, TAMU etc.

    Gary Patterson will now get to choose from 4 and 5 star elite position players instead of molding 2 and 3 star athletes into defenders.

    Oh, and TCU already has the best strength and conditioning program in the country; what happens when it gets BCS money and BCS caliber players ?

  9. BTW Miami didn’t get steamrolled in 2001 or 2002 when they played a bunch of cupcakes then met a real team in the title game.

    The myth of playing cupcakes not preparing you has been debunked, many times.

    Winning is winning and when you keep winning, it’s contagious, no matter who you beat and has a snowball effect.

    Not to mention, beating up on cupcakes means you are not getting beaten up, suffering from attrition.

    It didn’t stop those Miami teams.

    It didn’t stop FSU’s dynasty.

    Florida opening their season vs a couple of cupcakes didn’t leave them ill prepared for their SEC schedule. Playing the homecoming cupcake doesn’t leave them ill prepared for FSU.

    The 1999 St Louis Rams beat up on cupcakes and won it all.

    The 2001 Pats did the same.

  10. The ’08 team had a few low scoring games of its own, the defense just didn’t give those games away like they did in ’07. No one would have thought 24 would be enough to beat Oklahoma, but that defense made it possible.

    Also, that same defense gave the offense a lot more opportunities to score. Why did Florida’s offense only put up 24 points against LSU in ’07? Because they were on the bench for most of the game watching Jacob Hester chew up the clock. LSU’s last drive alone was 8 minutes.

    I do see your point though, and think you could make an argument either way.

  11. That’s true but they were also able to put together clutch scoring drives to win games. 2007’s offense never really did (I guess you could say against Mississippi if you want to stretch it).

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