Podcast: Previewing the Florida Gators vs. Samford game, plus coaching changes

    GatorCountry brings you a new podcast as we preview the Florida Gators vs. Samford game on Saturday in the Swamp.

    Andrew Spivey and David Soderquist breakdown the coaching changes for the Florida Gators and what it could mean for the team going forward.

    Andrew and David are joined by former Florida Gators tight end Clifford Taylor to get his thoughts on the team.

    Andrew and David also give you the keys for the Gators as they try to turn the season around as they look for two more wins to be bowl eligible.



    David: What’s up folks of Gator Country. This is none other than your boy David Soderquist, along with Andrew Spivey. A very eventful week this week in Florida Gator world. Coming into this podcast, I was thinking we’ll just preview Samford for a little bit and see what we want to see in this game and go over what we want to see in this game, but wow. Right as we get done recording a podcast from last week, some big news hits the scene here. Todd Grantham, John Hevesy. Gone. Fired from the University of Florida.

    Andrew: Boot.

    David: Boot.

    Andrew: Got the boot. Is it a year too late? Yeah. It is. This should have happened January of last year, or December of last year. It should have happened. Didn’t happen, and that’s why we’re sitting here talking about a team that’s 4-5 on the year and need to win two out of three to salvage a bowl game here. I’m shocked that he fired John Hevesy in the middle of the year. I really am, David. My thought all along was this. We were going to see after the season John Hevesy takes a job at U Mass or something like that. That’s what I predicted in the back of my head was that it was just going to be a situation where Hevesy took another job. It was going to be understood that he was going to be fired if he didn’t take another job. Never did I think Mullen would fire him.

    I’ll say this. We had the best press conference of Dan Mullen’s tenure on Monday. He was very open. He was very honest about things. He took blame for a lot of it. Maybe that’s a new leaf turned. I’m not ready to say it is. You fired two coaches. Good. Should have been done last year. But to give benefit of the doubt, maybe it’s a step in the right direction. We’ll see.

    I will say this. I think promoting Christian Robinson as acting DC, a lot of people are upset about it, and I think there’s a couple ways to look at it. Robinson turned down Michigan to say with Florida last year, so in a way Mullen feels like he owes it to Christian to be DC and to stay on board. It’s also an opportunity for Christian to put that on his resume that he was acting interim DC for the last three games of the season. If you give the DC job to Wesley McGriff right now, I think it puts a lot of pressure on Mullen that if the defense looks good these next three games that Wesley McGriff has to be the DC, and I don’t think that’s warranted. I don’t think that the pressure should be there, by any means, to do that. While it was a questionable decision, I’m okay with the decision to make Christian Robinson the acting DC.

    David: I didn’t really have a problem with that either when it first came out. What else are you going to really do? Like you said, you could either put McGriff there or him, for the time being. That doesn’t necessarily mean he’s going to be the permanent DC. Maybe even the players come out and play more charged. I hate to say this, but if you went on Twitter a little bit and saw a certain player’s tweets. You probably know the player I’m talking about. He had posted a couple tweets when Hevesy and Grantham were fired, and it was like celebration videos that people were posting, and he was retweeting them. Then he deleted them real quick. I’m not going to give the player’s name out, because I don’t want to put him under the bus here on the podcast.

    I’m hoping the players come out with a different kind of energy. You can’t expect an assistant to come out there and be able to take a DC job and instantly improve the defense or anything like that, or even the offense with Paul, with the offensive line. You can’t expect it to just improve overnight, because these guys don’t coach that position. Right now, you have interims there. For all the people that think it’s going to change overnight, just remember when Jim McElwain was fired and Randy Shannon took over. It didn’t get any better either. Put that in your mind. Don’t blame Christian Robinson or Paul. I can’t even say his last name. Don’t even blame him. That’s not their typical job.

    We’ll just have to see if the players come out and play different for a different head coach. I know a lot of players, not even players, I know a lot of people, like staff or media guys, that have said that the attitude in Gratham- Neil Blackmon had a good article on it as well. The attitude of the coaches rubbed off a little bit on the players, and I think that when those firings happened, I think the players liked it, but I’m not sure if they liked it 100%. I’m still not even sure if they’re completely all bought in.

    I don’t know, but I expect to see a different kind of energy from the team when they play Samford this week. I’m not going to overlook it, because I know it’s Samford. They should kill Samford anyway. If they beat them 65-0, I’m still not going to think anything of it, because you still got Missouri. You still got Florida State. I want to see something else. I still think that the players will play with a different energy now that that had happened.

    Andrew: I think you were at a situation where what was happening wasn’t working. You had Mullen basically come out and say, I don’t know if the players are buying into what I’m selling.

    David: Right.

    Andrew: In so many words he said, I don’t know that the message was received that I had. So, you try to change it up a little bit. You got three games. I’m still in the thing of if you lose another game maybe Mullen is on the hot seat of getting replaced. I don’t know. You have three games to see if you can improve this and fix this. Is the defense going to look different? I don’t think so. Maybe there’s a different way that Robinson or McGriff or Paul Pasqualoni or those guys, maybe they break it down differently.

    I always say this as well. When you’re coaching, you’ve got to be able to adjust to each player. Each player hears things differently. Each player is coached differently. Maybe it’s a simply terminology standpoint that Grantham had that Robinson will come out with or something along that way. As far as the offensive line goes, maybe it’s just a new voice. I say this all the time. It’s about getting after it. Hevesy did not relate well to his players. He didn’t. He didn’t have good relationships with most of his players. Maybe it works out. Mullen said he’s more involved in the offensive line. He’s more involved in the defense. We’ll see. Saturday is not the test. Missouri is the test.

    David: Right. Correct. Mullen’s attitude, you mentioned it in the press conferences. I’m not the biggest Mullen guy right now. I personally feel he may have lost some of the team already. You heard about the broken podium supposedly that he did deny in the press conference. I don’t know if that’s true or not. Either way.

    Andrew: He said he pushed it.

    David: He said he pushed it. He said he wasn’t strong enough. He said, what coach would have been strong enough to toss that thing over? I don’t know. He made a funny joke out of it.

    Andrew: I forgot what he said.

    s done a lot to scar us from:

    Andrew: You can’t do any worse.

    David: Kids didn’t want to play with him. You can’t do any worse than that. That’s going to be an automatic upgrade right there. Then secondly, the DC needs to be an elite recruiter. I’m not going to say that the defensive recruiting’s been completely terrible. We’ve been able to bring on some top 100 kids, but this is the University of Florida. This is a school known for its defense for decades. You should be able get any prospects.

    Andrew: I’ll disagree with you for a second here.

    David: What’s up?

    Andrew: Not to interrupt you, but I’ll disagree with you for a second. That’s what we’re here for, to disagree.

    David: That’s it.

    Andrew: I don’t know so much. A lot of DCs and OCs are not as hands on in the recruiting process per se as far as getting out on the road and recruiting, but I think it’s a situation of selling that the defense is going to get back to where it is and where it’s supposed to be at Florida. Not having so many tweeners. I still say that’s one of the biggest downfalls that Todd Grantham has is he has too many tweeners. He has too many guys that don’t have true positions. Diabate, what’s his true position?

    David: Right.

    Andrew: Amari Burney, what’s his true position? Moon, what’s his true position? Diwun Black, what’s his true position? You have too many guys with too many up in the air positions that I think hurts him a little bit. We have a special guest coming on. Our man Clifford Taylor, former walk-on with Florida. David, why don’t we go to Clifford? We’ll talk to Clifford, get his thoughts on all of this, get his thoughts on the season as a whole, and then we can come back and get some look forward to this Samford game. I don’t think there’s much to preview there for Samford. It’s all about what Florida can do against Samford.

    David: Right. Yeah. I think ESPN has us a 99% chance to win that game. Obviously, I think we’re going to beat Samford. No matter how bad you are, you can be losing to blowout South Carolina bad, you’ll still be able to beat Samford. I’m not worried about that game.

    Andrew: Will Muschamp did lose to Georgia Southern.

    David: He did, but he had a ton of injuries, and he still shouldn’t have lost, but he had a ton of injuries.

    Andrew: It can happen.

    David: We do have our buddy Clifford Taylor on. I’ve interviewed him three or four times since I’ve been over there at Chomp Talk with my buddies over there, Brian Fox and all of them. Give a special shout out to them. Let’s bring on Clifford Taylor here for this next segment and get his thoughts on what’s going on so far and his thoughts when he was at the University. Hopefully, he can shed some light on it for us.

    Andrew: Yeah.

    David: All right, folks. We have on Clifford Taylor IV, former tight end over at the University of Florida. Good buddy of mine. Here with Andrew Spivey and us. Clifford, been a while since I talked to you last. How’s life been going?

    Clifford: It’s good. In Los Angeles still, doing stuff for the Rams. Culture shock, but that comes with the territory. I’m hanging in there.

    Andrew: You’re winning football games over there though.

    David: You are.

    Clifford: Sunday night it was a different story, but better than that for the most part. We’re winning football games.

    Andrew: I know. My fantasy football team needed the defense for LA. I was hoping for a 7-0 game. I had AJ Brown versus Los Angeles Rams defense. Both were on my team, so I needed Brown to catch like an 80-yard touchdown, and then the Rams just shut them out the rest of the day. I still won, so it’s okay.

    Clifford: All good.

    Andrew: Clifford, my first question for you, I know you keep up with the team, and you keep up with the program. How shocked were you Monday or Sunday night when the news came out that Grantham and Hevesy were out? When I say shocked, were you shocked that it happened in the middle of the year?

    Clifford: That. That’s what I was going to say. I was very shocked that it happened in the middle of the season, because I feel like that’s only really been twice in the last decade or so at Florida, especially now that they’re coordinators really. It’s like, okay, who’s going to fill in the shoe? I personally believe we’re going to win out the last three games. It’s cupcake. What’s the name of the team? Samford or something like that?

    David: Samford. Yeah.

    Clifford: Samford, Mizzou, Florida State. All winnable games. I just want to beat Florida State, if anything. We got to beat Florida State.

    David: I know, man.

    Clifford: Anybody that knows me well knows that I hate FSU more than any rival that we have in the SEC. That’s mainly because my best friend who I grew up with, he’s a Nole, diehard Nole, and so he gave me a hard time as a kid. The roles were reversed once we got to college, thankfully. Ever since Florida State’s been kind of turning the page a little bit, he’s just been talking like they’re back. Not going to lie, it’s kind of getting to me now, because of the way the season’s been going. Like I said, we just got to beat Florida State.

    That’s one thing that I hate about this business is sometimes you just got to let people go. You got to put personal feelings aside, and you just got to say, we’re going in a new direction. The Florida Gators are such a big brand. I’ll speak to the Rams a little bit. When we traded Kenny Young, it caught us all by surprise, because Kenny was one of my guys. Kenny, he just walked in the building. He was just one of those guys that was just like you are a genuinely good person. You’re a player that I can actually talk to without having it be this whole ordeal. When he got traded, that definitely hurt me a little bit, but like I said, it’s a business.

    That’s one thing that I’ve learned in the last couple months working in the NFL. It’s a bottom-line business, and things happen. That’s just the way life goes. Kind of the same situation now with Hev and Grantham, who I had nothing but love for. They treated me well. I had no problems with them.

    Andrew: I told David, I coached for 11 years, and I don’t know that we ever went through a midseason coaching change, but I told David, and I wanted to get your thoughts on this. Florida just kind of seems stuck. After the LSU loss and the Georgia loss, and then the South Carolina loss, they just kind of felt stuck. I told David, in a way I feel like he did this to get some new energy maybe going, but also just to try something different. What was going on wasn’t working, obviously. You’ve got to figure out a way for the next three games to get it going. How much do you think that that plays into it of just fresh face, new voice? Everybody’s coached differently. Everybody hears coaching differently. How much do you think that can change, just new voice, new energy?

    Clifford: I think it can. Before I was on the team at Florida, I remember when Coach McElwain got fired, and I think that very next game we played, I believe it was UAB or something like that. You could just kind of tell that there was a different vibe. There was just like a different style of play. The team seemed a little more united. Not saying that what Grantham and Hev did kind of was detrimental, but sometimes when you bring a new face in, like I know they’re bringing a GA in to take over the roll of O line, so that might give them a whole new deal of energy.

    I know the guys well. I know Ethan, and I know Josh. They’re not just going to tap out on the season. Kind of like what Zach Carter was saying before. These guys are working to feed their families. We know the SEC. We know the national championship’s out of the picture now, but they’re not going to just give up on the season, like I know a lot of Twitter fingers suggested. We don’t do that at Florida.

    I’m also kind of relieved seeing what Dameon and what Big Zach said. It’s like, we understand it’s not going the way it’s supposed to, but we’re not going to give up on y’all, so y’all shouldn’t give up on us. I feel like that’s the mentality that, I call myself a fan again now. I feel like that’s the mentality we should have. The Swamp is nothing without the fans. When you’re just bashing the team as much as you can, you’re not helping the case. I feel like all we can do now is just be like we’re riding behind you. Let’s handle Missouri. Let’s handle Samford. Let’s handle Florida State. Let’s handle whichever bowl game we go to. Let’s just look forward to the future. That’s really all we can do now.

    I think fans need to kind of just get a grip. If we’re being real, this is the first year that Mullen’s had that’s been under 500. I feel like in a way it’s understandably so why people want him fired, but it’s if you just look back from a bigger scale how much he’s changed the culture here and the traditions around Gainesville, the amount that he’s done in four years, Mac and Muschamp couldn’t even do those combined. I think people just need to stick behind the Gators the rest of the season.

    Then, of course, once the season’s over, it’s going to be like none of this ever happened. That’s how I feel about the whole situation.

    f fans are worried by the way:

    Dan Mullen, he used to love being asked questions. Here recently he’s been cutting people off. Now, these past two press conferences we’re starting to see a little bit of the old Dan Mullen. Neil Blackmon, he released an article, and he’s one of the guys from Saturday Down South. He’s actually really credible. He just doesn’t throw anything out there just to get clicks or anything else like that. Let me read a little snippet for you, and let me get an answer from you.

    It says, “Multiple sources inside the football program told Saturday Down South that Grantham had become unbearably difficult to work with over the past year, yelling at coaches who offered constructive criticism or advice and talking down to one of the interns and graduate assistants. ‘Most toxic environment I’ve ever dealt with,’ one Florida staffer texted Sunday night.”

    e. I know you were there till:

    Clifford: Just from thinking back, not really. I mean, there’s levels when it comes to working with a coordinator, because things happen in practice. Coaches mess up. It’s not just the coordinators or the head coaches. It’s the GAs too. There have been a couple times during scout periods where we might do the wrong assignment, and it just happens to be in front of Coach Mullen, so Grantham’s going to let it rip on the GAs. That’s just how it is. As far as just bashing one individual coach, or just going at one more than the others, I never experienced that, or at least have any recollection of that.

    Like I said, Grantham, for the most part, he pretty much had the same system. There were times where I would just be like, okay, he’s running this. Let me just go ahead and run this. Let me go ahead and run this way or that way. I kind of got an idea a little bit of the defense, so it became a little predictable, but then that comes with the territory of playing against these guys every single day before game day.

    Yeah, no. As far as players and encounters with the coaches, I can’t remember. I can’t think of any. Like I said, I didn’t experience anything like that. Grantham and Coach Hev, they were cool with me. Sometimes I would play scout O line, and so Hev would kind of show me the ways a little bit, but it was never anything like stupid mother- like nothing of that sort.

    But, again, like I said, I haven’t been there this year. People change. Their style changes. Their attitude changes in a way. Kind of like what you were saying before about Coach Mullen and how you can kind of see his attitude a little bit. Things happen, and things change. Again, it could be this year, but from my experience, I didn’t have any problems.

    Andrew: Losing makes the bad come out in a lot of people.

    David: Yeah.

    Clifford: Easy.

    Andrew: It just does. When you’re losing, I mean, I was losing at a high school level, not at the college level, and it’s different. That was kind of where I wanted to ask you next, Clifford. You see just kind of where the season was last year, and now you see where it kind of started to tail off at the end. Was there something after the Alabama game or anything that made you worry about the longevity of the program a little bit? Some people said, the bowl game was basically throwing the white towel in, and it’s hard to turn the competitiveness back on a little bit. Did you get that sense at all after that Alabama game?

    Clifford: No. I totally understand from the outside looking in it’s like they’re just saying screw it. Honestly, I remember just talking to Shorter, Baby J, Ja’Markis, all the younger receivers. I remember them being so excited for the Cotton Bowl, because it’s like Grimes and Toney’s not playing, next man up. Even guys like Gamble, Zip, Odom. Hell, I was even kind of excited, because it’s like it’s one down, if by chance we blow them out or get blown out, they might throw me in there. I was a little excited myself. I guess part of my excitement kind of maybe was a little oblivious to what was going on, maybe.

    I think from my perspective we were all pretty excited for the bowl game. Even what Coach Mullen was saying before, next man up. This is a huge opportunity on a national stage for you guys to showcase what you’re about. Not only for this year, but for next year and moving forward. We were just kind of looking at that like, yeah, let’s shift that a little bit.

    , it’s kind of looking like:

    One thing I will say that I’ve noticed about the freshmen. They seem like very excited to work. I don’t know if you guys ever talked to my guy Chief. Chief’s like my little brother. Great guy.

    David: Chief Borders. Yeah.

    Clifford: There hasn’t been a day where I’ve seen him not smiling. Even in the workout videos. It’s like we need more of that. We need guys like him. D Black, who I’m cool with too. My boy was telling me, I love stadium run. I’m like, when’s the last time you ever heard that?

    Andrew: Right. I think what you just said is important. I think that’s a little bit of where the frustration comes in. Again, I try to balance where I’m looking it. I look at it from the fan side, but I’ve also been on the other side, where losing takes away the fun and everything else. I think what you just said is important. I feel like a lot of the juice just has kind of went away a little bit. I said this before. That LSU game last year with the shoe throw, I just felt like the juice wasn’t there. Even the Kentucky game this year, I just felt like the juice wasn’t there. I’m glad you brought that up, because you do. You want to see guys that are just ready to run through a wall for the name on the front and the name on the back.

    Clifford: Right. I know in this day and age and this level of college football, players only have so little patience nowadays. Back then, it’s kind of like you’re a youngster, wait your turn. Unless you’re just a gem from Heaven, wait your turn. I think personally, just from me watching college football back in the day, you want to put the best players on the field. It doesn’t matter if they’re a freshman, redshirt freshman, sophomore. Whatever the case may be, you want to put the best guys out there. If they’ve earned their opportunities, by all means. For example, Rick Wells. Rick Wells has been there since before I got to Florida.

    Andrew: He was Mac’s first recruit.

    Clifford: Yeah. And he’s earned every bit of what he’s been given this year. I’ve seen him work from the time I was just a little 200-pound junior watching him grow to now this sixth year senior. Just watching him score in that first game. I literally got out of my seat, because I was like, he has worked for that for so long.

    Again, back to putting the best players out there, you want to do that, but if this dude’s been showing it forever, and you’re not giving him a chance, just do it. I think Rick has taken full advantage of his chance. Honestly, I wouldn’t be surprised if a team picks him up. I’ve seen what he does on special teams. I see what he does when his number is called to run a route as a receiver. He can do just about all of it. Again, it’s just about putting the best talent out there and seeing who really puts it on the for the orange and blue.

    Andrew: Like you said, there’s only 53 men in the NFL, and they got to play special teams. Everybody said there was no way Freddie Swain would make it in the NFL. The guy is making plays every Sunday.

    David: Yeah, he is.

    Andrew: Putting over 100 yards up a couple weeks ago. He plays every special teams, does everything you ask him to do. Never got to worry about his name being in the newspaper for the wrong reason.

    Clifford: Right.

    Andrew: That means a lot. That’s a good point on Rick. You get guys who earn it. I think about a guy like Jeremiah Moon. Moon, for all the bad luck the poor guy’s been through, to have a good season is incredible for him. David, that’s all I got for Clifford. You got anything else?

    s your take on Dan Mullen for:

    Clifford: I’ll say this. I hope every bit of Gator Nation is listening to this. I would literally go to war for Dan Mullen. I would go to war for his family. I would go to war for his kids. I would literally. Like I said, I would literally go to war for Coach Mullen, because some people got to realize, whether they like it or not, he’s changing people’s lives. He changed my life, whether I’ve told him that before or not. Him, his family, they really changed my life. They’re honestly one of many reasons I got the opportunity to be out here with the Rams.

    And so, for me, I’m always going to defend Coach Mullen, no matter if we’re 8-4, 4-8, even 0-12. It doesn’t matter. I’m always going to ride behind Dan Mullen. I’ll always ride for him. If he’s here next year, or wherever he goes. Still going to be a Gator. I’m still going to be a Gator through and through. Again, I’ll never have anything ever bad to say about Coach Mullen. I love the man to death. Like I said, he’s got my full endorsement always, for sure.

    Andrew: I think that’s the thing too. We’re all guilty of it. We look at coach as coach. We forget that at home he’s dad, he’s husband. It’s everything. I say this all the time. Will Muschamp is one of the greatest human beings. Jim McElwain the same way. They didn’t work out at Florida, but they’re great people. I think that’s a lot of the case. Every now and then you get a bad apple out there, but I think it’s a good point. Clifford, I appreciate it, buddy. I really do. Hopefully, we can do this again. Hopefully, your Rams will do my fantasy football some good.

    Clifford: I’ll let them know.

    Andrew: Tell Aaron Donald I need some more sacks.

    Clifford: You know what, me too. Me too.

    Andrew: My guy Van, I have to say I love Van. Van’s my guy. I love Van.

    David: Clifford, man, one more question. When are we going to see you in the WWE?

    Clifford: Yeah. It’s crazy what a few phone calls with your parents, how that can bring you back to reality a little bit. Honestly, I’ve been thinking about it for a little while. I’m still inching back and forth. They gave me a tryout form, so I have until next weekend or the weekend after to figure it out.

    Andrew: Call Titus.

    Clifford: I did. It’s great. After they sent me that, I talked to him, and he was telling me. He’s like, it don’t matter if you’re a main eventer or just in the middle of the cart. If you go places like in Saudi Arabia or China, they will know who you are. You will literally be like Peyton Manning to them. I was like, word. So, yeah. We chalked it up. We chalked it up for a good 30 minutes. He was just giving me insights, because he never had experience in the ring either. So he was saying, it’s a learning curve, but once you’re in you just never get tired of it. I was like, okay.

    Again, I’ve been thinking about it. It’s TBD at this time. Maybe in a couple months. No, it’s November. Next month. Next month maybe I’ll make a big announcement I’m doing it, maybe not. You never know. Kind of something that Sting used to say. That’s before my time, but I used to watch old-school stuff. He’s like, the one thing that’s for sure about me is that nothing’s for sure. That’s kind of the attitude that I’m taking with it right now.

    Andrew: Never say never.

    David: Never say never. Hopefully, maybe we’ll see a Titus and Clifford tag team champions here.

    Andrew: There you go.

    Clifford: Oh, yeah.

    Andrew: Gator duo or something.

    David: Won’t see Andrew and David, because we’re too small.

    Andrew: No. I’m good. I don’t need no elbows to my face or to my back or whatever. My four-year-old does enough of that.

    ogram. Obviously, you were in:

    Clifford: Any time.

    David: Whenever you win the Royal Rumble, give me a shout out.

    Clifford: I got you, man. For sure. Any time.

    Andrew: We’ll come hold the belt together for you. We’ll be your paparazzi guys who come out there and pick you up on our shoulders. We may be able to do that. We’re old.

    Clifford: I got you guys. I appreciate y’all. Any time.

    Andrew: Thanks, Clifford.

    David: Thanks, Clifford.

    Clifford: Thank you so much.

    David: Clifford Taylor. Always, like I said, fun time talking to Clifford Taylor. Always catching up with him, especially in some DMs every now and then. Definitely love to see his face and talk to him in person a little bit. I guess it’s more over Zoom than in person, but at least it’s something that we have here.

    Florida going on to face Samford here. Florida, obviously, has the upper hand here. They’ve got a 99% chance to win this game, per ESPN’s matchup predictor. Really, I’m not even worried about Florida losing this game. They could probably have their worst game, like they did against South Carolina, and still be able to manage to win the football game.

    Some key things that I would like to see in this game. Obviously, I don’t know the injury status of Anthony Richardson. Dan Mullen said he should be cleared this Saturday to play. Needs to quit breakdancing and trying to do some hip hop Tic Tok stuff in his room. Anthony Richardson hopefully does play. I’d really, first of all, just like to see Anthony Richardson rebound. Didn’t have a good game against Georgia. Georgia’s #1 defense though was his first start. I give him a pass. No big deal whatsoever.

    Really like to see things in the running game start going. I would definitely love to see Dameon Pierce get way more carries, because he deserves it. I would really like to see more carries from Dameon Pierce. I’d also like to see if maybe the team comes out more energized now that, obviously, Hevesy and Grantham are gone. If it was “toxic” for them, I’d like to see more energy from the team. That’s really all I want to see in this Samford game. More energy, more enthusiasm.

    I want to see a blowout, because the only team we’ve blown out was Vanderbilt. You should blow out Samford. I want to see a blowout. I don’t want to see a close game, or we didn’t cover the spread. I want to see some helmets get hit. I want to see players, obviously, play with more effort. I want to see Anthony Richardson. I would love to see if we could get some Carlos Del Rio action out there if we’re doing really well. I’d really like to see Bowman, Lingard. I would love to see all these second-string guys. I’d like to see us get up real early, see these second-string guys get in there.

    I explained this to somebody the other night. The reason why we probably still haven’t seen some of the younger guys, especially Bowman and Lingard. I believe they’ve played in one or two games this year, backup garbage duty. I think maybe they’re trying to save their year of eligibility, so maybe they’re saving them. Could be saving them for the last two games. I don’t know. I think that’s one of the big reasons why we haven’t seen any of the backup guys. I really would like to see more cohesiveness just overall from the team. What about you, Andrew?

    Andrew: Yeah. My biggest thing is this. Come out with a sense of urgency. Come out with some energy. Come out wanting to win. When I say that, I’m not saying they didn’t come out wanting to win in South Carolina. You always come out wanting to win, but come out and show that energy. Show that explosiveness. Show that burst. Just come out with some fire. You’re at home for the first time in five weeks. It’s a noon kickoff. It’s against Samford. You just had two coaches fired.

    You have a lot going against you, but figure out a way to come out with a sense of urgency in this game. Come out with fast start in this game. Just get yourself feeling good again. Do I even care? Let Emory throw some deep balls to the receivers and have some long explosive plays to get the fans fired up, get yourself fired up. Just get yourself feeling good heading into Missouri. I think that’s the big thing. Get that confidence back. Get yourself feeling good. Obviously, the offensive line working with a new offensive line coach. Let Christian Robinson get settled in before they go to Missouri next week.

    You’re not going to learn a ton about this team, but you can learn a little something, and that is that they’re not going to quit. That’s big this week. I think it’s huge that it’s Samford and not Missouri, because you can work out a little bit of the kinks of the coaching change there. You’d love to see some young guys. You’d love to see Kitna in there. Anthony Richardson I think will play and play a lot, but again, you need Emory to be confident too. Whoever is going to be your starting quarterback for Missouri, you need them to get some confidence back, because no quarterback right now has confidence.

    David: They don’t. That’s the other thing I was trying to say. You actually kind of stole it from me, Andrew. I was trying to talk about the confidence. You need confidence from this game, because the next two opponents, Missouri, FSU, obviously are going to be tougher opponents coming up. After that game that you had against South Carolina, I can already see players probably just saying, oh man, that was rough. We’re not going to win the rest of these games. You really need a game in between that you can really boost the confidence of the players. I think this is the game.

    Obviously, a lot of kids love Christian Robinson. I’ve heard a lot of great things from former players. Even Clifford, he’s talked about Christian Robinson before. Just a really good all-around guy with a good personality. Young guy too. Really connects with the players. I would love to see that team come out with an extra fire now. Maybe that Christian Robinson can connect with them, and probably not even do a 3rd and Grantham call. Maybe we don’t see 3rd and Grantham anymore, and we finally get to see some players actually playing at the right spots of the field with the formation from the other offense.

    That’s what I really want to see. I just want to see players play with some confidence, get some swag going, get some deep bombs out there. Get the team confident, because Missouri and Florida State are coming up. There’s a lot of doubt in the program right now, especially after that big loss you had against South Carolina there. Just want to see some confidence. That’s it. I have nothing really else to say about this game. It’s a team you should blow out. They’re 4-5 in their division. They’ve not had one impressive win on their roster.

    There’s nothing to really break down about Samford. It’s just a game. It’s just a game. You go in there. You play with confidence. It’s a confidence builder for the next two games. That’s how I look at it. Like you said, it’s time for both coaches, Paul and Christian Robinson, out there to get acclimated with the team before the end of the season, and hopefully whoever they do hire in those position for the next year can get acclimated for spring practice next year and the spring game.

    Andrew: Like you said, that’s it. You’re in a sprint. Your last three games of the season. You find out what a lot of people are made about. You find out what your team is made about. We’ll find out what Dan Mullen’s made about. You’re looking at a stretch that will determine a lot of things for a lot of people. I think every coach on the staff is coaching for their job.

    I know Clifford said that Mullen’s changed some things around in the program, and he has. He has. I think he’s also done some things wrong in the program. I think if you ask anybody right now, and Dan Mullen even said this a little bit on Monday. He said, the program’s not as good as it was at the beginning of the year. He said, we’ve went backwards. That’s not what you want to hear.

    That’s kind of all I have as well. You’re going to find out a lot about a lot of people in the program and in the organization over these final three weeks. It starts on Saturday. Again, you’re not going to gain much from it. If Florida comes out and wins 60-0, I don’t think that fans are going to change their opinion on things. I don’t think it changes much even overall. The next two after this does. Obviously, and you need to take steps forward in this game.

    David: Right. We need steps forward, not steps back, because we’ve had enough. I don’t think we’ve been able to discuss a win in five weeks. We had a bye week, and then three losses in a row, and now we’re going on Week 5. I would love to start next week’s podcast saying, Florida comes out with a victory. That’s all I want to say. What about you, man?

    Andrew: Yeah. That’s it. Like I said before, I hate losing. I can’t stand to lose. To watch the last few weeks has been rough. To watch the South Carolina game was probably the roughest game I’ve watched since Muschamp Georgia Southern. That’s true. That was a team that was just out matched, and it shouldn’t have been. South Carolina’s not a good football team. South Carolina probably loses to Missouri this week.

    David: Yeah. Part of me thinks last week, those guys were better than South Carolina. I don’t think they came out with the energy or the want to even win the game. That’s my opinion. It could be different all across the board. I want to see a different energy. Just a win at home.

    Andrew: Wrap us up, David, and we’ll get out of here and be back on Sunday to recap a win, hopefully.

    David: Hopefully, we’ll recap a win next week. Clifford, shout out to him. Thanks for joining us here on the GatorCountry.com podcast, and hopefully we’ll be talking to a future WWE wrestler. For Andrew Spivey and for David Soderquist, that will end the podcast this week. Hope you guys enjoyed it. Get some info from Clifford here. That’ll wrap it up, folks, for this episode of the GatorCountry.com podcast. You can follow me @SoderquistGC on Twitter, and you can follow Andrew Spivey @AndrewSpiveyGC on Twitter as well. That’ll wrap it up, folks, for this episode of the GatorCountry.com podcast.

    Andrew Spivey
    Andrew always knew he wanted to be involved with sports in some capacity. He began by coaching high school football for six years before deciding to pursue a career in journalism. While coaching, he was a part of two state semifinal teams in the state of Alabama. Given his past coaching experience, he figured covering recruiting would be a perfect fit. He began his career as an intern for Rivals.com, covering University of Florida football recruiting. After interning with Rivals for six months, he joined the Gator Country family as a recruiting analyst. Andrew enjoys spending his free time on the golf course and watching his beloved Atlanta Braves. Follow him on Twitter at @AndrewSpiveyGC.