Give it Away

Give it away, give it away, give it away now…

Give it away, give it away, give it away now..

Give it away, give it away, give it away now…

Can’t tell if I’m a kingpin or a pauper…

The Chili Peppers

Jeff Driskel watches as the football and the Gators championship hopes are fumbled away

In case you just crawled out from underneath a rock or woke up from a drunken stupor, there was a football game in Jacksonville today and, sadly, a game of hot potato broke out.  The Florida Gators won the game of hot potato, but unfortunately lost the game of football.  They came in kingpins, 60 minutes from a trip to Atlanta and the SEC Title Game but left paupers having to pick up the pieces of the shattered egg they laid against the Bulldogs.  So they’re left with the question of what happened?  Better to start with what didn’t happen.

They didn’t take care of the football.

“Give it away, give it away, give it away now..”

They didn’t take care of the football

“Give it away, give it away, give it away now..”

Did I mention they didn’t take care of the football?

“Give it away, give it away, give it away now…”

6 times they didn’t take care of the football.  I know what you’re thinking, it was more than that, right?  Right, but please don’t remind me.  They gave it away 6 times and that’s more than enough for me.  More than enough to give away an SEC Eastern Division Championship.  More than enough to give away an undefeated season.  More than enough to bring down everything they’ve built to this point.  More than enough to give the hated Georgia Bulldogs bragging rights for another year for the second consecutive season.  The last time that happened Bush was still in office.  Papa Bush.  H.W.  Fox was still a fledgling network with no sports.  MTV still played music.  Spurrier had yet to coach a down in the SEC.

Enough already, right?  OK one more, The Chili Peppers were still known as the Red Hot Chili Peppers.

Give it away, give it away, give it away now.

OK, so they didn’t take care of the football, but what else didn’t happen?  They didn’t stick to the plan to win, they didn’t focus on the things that got them to this point, they didn’t remain efficient in the red zone, they didn’t win the fourth quarter, but mostly, they didn’t take care of the football.  In spite of the first 5 turnovers, in spite of the myriad of penalties that kept Georgia in the game, in spite of the multitude of mistakes in the red zone, they still had a chance.  They still had the opportunity to tie or win the game late in the fourth quarter.  They still had a chance to punch that ticket to Atlanta.  So what happened?

You guessed it, they didn’t take care of the football.

Give it away, give it away, give it away now…

Jordan Reed goes from hero to zero as ball is punched out of his hands near the goal line

On the most telling play of the night, as the Gators are driving towards a potentially tying score, Jordan Reed catches a pass; breaks some tackles; sees the green of the endzone; sees the Gators season hopes and dreams before him; his will to score, his will to win cannot be denied; he leaps over a tackler heroically bounding for the endzone, and… doesn’t take care of the football.  The player of the game for the second year in a row, Jarvis Jones, knocks the ball out of Reed’s hand into the endzone to be recovered by a Georgia player and with it all of the Gators wishes and desires lying dormant on the endzone grass.

Give it away, give it away, give it away now…

All week the media was abuzz with this talk of “violators” a term Dan Quinn the Gators defensive coordinator uses to describe players who don’t take care of the football and, as such, are the subject of strip attempts.  Today the Gator offense was the violator and the Dawgs made them pay for their crimes.

Give it away, give it away, give it away now…

Football is a funny game.  The only sport with a ball that is not round.  As such it’s known for the funny ways that the ball bounces.  Interesting, yes.  But what’s more interesting is the ball doesn’t bounce funny unless you don’t take care of the football.  If you hold on to it as you’re supposed to it does not bounce, and if they held on to it in this game they would not have lost.

The defense played a whale of a game.  They controlled the Georgia running game, they kept Murray in the pocket forcing him to try to make plays with his arm and for most of the game he did not do that.  He missed receivers and made multiple mistakes.

The offense actually played better than they looked.  They moved the ball on several long drives, they completed passes, they just lost their mind in the red zone and continued to make silly mental mistakes with penalties, and, of course, as we know by now they didn’t take care of the football.

Give it away, give it away, give it away now…

If you would have told me Murray would give up three turnovers and the Gators would have multiple red zone opportunities I would have told you the Gators win this game.  Never in my wildest dreams would I have thought they would have given it away 6 times.  They only had 4 giveaways on the season coming in.  They now have 10 and 1 agonizing loss.

Give it away, give it away, give it away now…

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One thought on “Give it Away

  1. Pingback: Monday Morning Quarterback: We Embrace Things at Florida… | Swamp Music

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