Well, it’s about that time of the year again.
A little less than a year ago, I released a chart comparing Florida and FSU’s football programs. The idea was to silence FSU fans who went out of their way to mock Gator fans about their worst season since 1979. And boy, it accomplished that:
— #InAllKindsOfWeather (@AllKindsWeather) July 3, 2014
But that’s just football. Florida plays more than one sport, and part of what makes being a Gator fan so special is the program’s ability to produce great teams in any sport. Hence the popular twitter hashtag #EverythingSchool. The University of Florida is great at everything, which begged the question: why not do a comparative chart for all sports?
So that’s exactly what I did.
Before I show you the chart, though, I want to clarify one thing: the amount of national championships FSU has in reality does not match the amount of national championships they claim, for a (wide and hilarious) variety of reasons. So go ahead and check the graphic out, but then keep reading. What I’ve discovered regarding their true national championship count is almost as priceless as the actual data itself.
So, enough teasing. Here it is.
As you probably noticed from the three asterisks next to FSU’s 11 national championships, there are some problems regarding their national championship count. Depending on the degree of ignorance in the FSU fan you ask, they may have up to 19 national championships. Part of the problem is that some FSU fans are either stupid enough to wholly trust Wikipedia, or just don’t care enough to do independent research. Every time Florida wins a national championship, and I point out that Florida has (however many that particular title made it) titles to FSU’s 11, every FSU fan who debates the point directs me to one place: the “Florida State Seminoles athletics” wikipedia page, where sure enough, FSU is given credit for 19 of them.
Unlike these FSU fans, I actually did some research and looked into them (because they sure as hell aren’t going to). The following national championships that FSU claims are legitimate: football in 1993, 1999 and 2013, women’s golf in 1981, men’s track and field in 2006 and 2008, women’s track and field in 1984 (outdoor) and 1985 (indoor), women’s soccer in 2014, and men’s gymnastics in 1951 and 1952. That makes 11. The other eight that Wikipedia page claims are softball in 1981 and 1982, and women’s indoor track and field in 1981, 1982 and 1985, women’s outdoor track and field in 1981 and 1984 and cheerleading in 1997. There are various problems with them:
-1981 and 1982 softball
It’s true that FSU won AIAW (governing body for women’s collegiate sports at the time) softball national championships in 1981 and 1982. There’s just one problem. The two titles they claim were both slow pitch softball tournaments, something that Wikipedia page just conveniently forgot to mention. In reality, Utah State was the 1981 national champion in softball, while the 1982 championship was split between UCLA (NCAA) and Texas A&M (in the last year of the AIAW). Even FSU’s own athletics site admits that those championships were slow pitch, though they added their own twist to it by claiming that softball was slow pitch at the time, which is wholly false; the two just coexisted at the same time. Anyway, there’s no way I’m going to give FSU credit for a national championship in a sport I dominated in high school gym class. Slow pitch softball is like coach pitch baseball. There’s no defensive skill involved because anybody with decent hand-eye coordination can crush it over the fence, no problem. I probably hit a home run nine out of every ten times up, and that’s nothing special because half my gym class can say the same thing. So yeah, slow pitch softball championships don’t count.
-1981, 1982 and 1984 women’s indoor track and field/1981 and 1985 women’s outdoor track and field
Nowhere else on the internet does FSU claim these national titles. Not in FSU’s official media guide (you can find their list of championships on page 33), not on the NCAA’s list of outdoor track and field champions or indoor track and field champions, and not even on FSU’s track and field wikipedia page. Nice try.
Cheerleading is not a sport. Sorry. Admittedly, some can question whether gymnastics (in which UF has three national championships) is a sport or not, but I draw the line at cheerleading.
So there we are. 11 national championships. Five made up out of nowhere, two in a game that’s been reduced to intramural, and one in the popular after school activity in high schools across the country. Whenever an FSU fan tries to claim 19, remind them of that.
I should point out one more thing. Some FSU fans are really smart, successful people with a good amount of common sense; this doesn’t apply to them. I’m not bashing the entirety of the Florida State fan base, because some of them are really good human beings with good heads on their shoulders. But there is an unfortunately large quantity of FSU fans with substandard levels of intelligence who irritate Gator fans purely for the sport of it. It’s unfortunate that I have to pander to that level, but hey, if this ends even one argument, it’s served its purpose.