I’m going to try to explain, in around 500 words, everything that has gone wrong for Florida State since Saturday’s 17-7 loss to the South Florida Bulls.
Alright, here we go.
First of all, to FSU fans: you are now fans of the fourth-best football team in the state. Read it again, let it sink in. That’s just the way things are. And because we didn’t want to play the Bulls in consecutive seasons, we have to wait until 2012 to get revenge, or at least have the chance to get revenge. So be prepared to hear about the loss to USF for three full years.
So how could a program go from “only wire-to-wire national champion ever” to “bottom of the now-big-four in their own state” in just ten years? Well, it takes a perfect storm of problems to create that kind of meltdown.
First of all, the game has changed, and the program hasn’t necessarily kept up with the times.
In the 2000s, every team is on television, all the time, so the need to play top nonconference opponents just to stay in the spotlight is no longer necessary. Therefore, scheduling teams like BYU and USF is something that most big programs don’t do anymore.
So let’s keep Florida on the schedule and play three Division I-AA opponents. Collect three wins in our sleep at home, and ignore all the talk when people notice our unwillingness to schedule anybody tough out of conference. Florida does it every year, why shouldn’t we?
Also, we need to go ahead and place Bobby Bowden’s feet to the fire. He clearly doesn’t get bothered by losses anymore, and that is fairly evident by his chuckles and jokes in a press conference after his team lost to a football program that didn’t even exist 20 years ago.
If Bowden thought things were bad when the fanbase was pressuring him to fire his son Jeff, he is about to see far worse. Because now he is the subject of the fanbase’s ire, and if he continues to run the program down, he won’t be riding off into the sunset. Instead, he will be chased into the dark by torchbearers because these ugly losses are getting old.
His attitude has leaked into all corners of the program, but only recently has it become painfully obvious. In the week leading up to the game against USF, Bowden complained about having to play the Bulls and warned of the upset looming if the team didn’t forget about the big win at BYU and re-focus.
This isn’t the way Bobby used to talk — he used to attack every opponent with reckless abandon and his players did the same. These days, he backs down and his players follow, so don’t tell me that he doesn’t still control the team.
The apathy has to end, and as much as I hate to say it, we need to take on a University of Florida mentality. If the coach isn’t winning, then fire him. After all, the field that we continuously come out and lay an egg on is named after the man — clearly he should be held accountable.
What was Florida State’s punishment for the loss to USF? They will go to Boston this weekend to take on Boston College, who have looked less than stellar so far this year.
Oh, and the game will be the host to ESPN’s College Gameday. So you can be sure that the fall of mighty Florida State will be highly documented this weekend.
Ok, so it took me 600 words to make my point. Maybe if we got a yard for every word I just wrote, we wouldn’t be looking up at the Bulls right now.