Friday, October 13, 2006

Maybe Auburn does “Suck”, but…

…we had better remember our history.

In those magical times known as the Spurrier Era, on five separate occasions did the undefeated Gators face the Tigers/War Eagles/Plainsmen of Auburn. In 1995 and 1996 the Gators came out on top.

On the other three occasions we lost.

That’s right – since 1993, when facing the Gators undefeated, Auburn is 3-2.

Let’s look at those three losses.

October 16, 1993

A 4th ranked and undefeated UF teams loses 38-35 at Auburn to the 19th ranked Tigers. While the Gators would later go on to defeat Alabama in the SEC Championship, this was the infamous Terry Bowden undefeated year, and Auburn was not eligible to play in the SEC Championship game. Alabama, who took Auburn’s place, lost the week before to Auburn 22-14. The Gators, who also lost to FSU that year, would end the year 5th ranked.

October 15, 1994

A number 1 ranked and undefeated Gator team loses to 6th ranked Auburn 36-33 on a last minute touchdown drive by Auburn. Auburn ends the year at 9-1-1, with their one loss to Alabama, who UF then defeats in the SEC Championship game 24-23. The loss knocks UF from the 1st spot to 5th, and a disastrous tie at FSU in November leads UF to the more disastrous “5th Quarter in the French Quarter” where UF loses to FSU 23-17. UF ends the year ranked 7th.

October 13, 2001

Number 1 ranked UF faced the unranked Tigers at Auburn. Florida loses 23-20, falls to 6th in the polls. A late season loss to Tennessee keeps UF from the SEC Championship and any national title hopes. Auburn ends the year 7-5, unranked.

October 14, 2006

Number 2 UF faces number 11 Auburn at Auburn.

So, we face them yet once again, undefeated, and at about the same time of year. (For you numerologists – can we read anything into the losses occurring on the 13th, 15th and 16th, with this game happening on the 14th?)

In 1993 we lost to a very good Auburn team. In 1994 we lost to a pretty good Auburn team. In 2001 we lost to a lousy Auburn team.

So, does Auburn suck? Maybe they do.

Does that mean we will win? History tells us, not necessarily.

Now, we can throw around the stats about winning 8 of the last 9 all we want. We might even think, after losing to Arkansas, that Auburn “Sucks”.

But we had better remember – until recently, Auburn was one of our traditional, annual SEC foes. They have made a habit of knocking highly ranked UF teams from the list of unbeatens. I recall each of those losses clearly.

And because of that, I have a different opinion of Auburn – one of respect.

No comments: