Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Gators Won't Fumble Away No. 1 Spot

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Gators Won't Fumble Away No. 1 Spot

Article excerpt

GAINESVILLE -- The best thing Florida State, Ohio State,

Penn State, Michigan and any would-be suitors of college football's

No. 1 ranking can do for the next two months is forget about it.

Pursue something else more attainable, like climbing Mount

Everest, unearthing Jimmy Hoffa's body or getting exclusive

photos of John F. Kennedy, Jr. and his bride.

Because until Nov. 30, and maybe not until next year, there

will be no separating the Florida Gators from their current

perch as king of the hill. Florida's hold on No. 1 is stronger

than Fidel Castro's Full Nelson on Cuba and Don King's grip on

Mike Tyson's finances.

Although that might seem like embellishment just one week after

Arizona State shockingly cut Nebraska loose from No. 1, it's

folly to think the Gators will encounter a real scare until

their Nov. 30 road date with FSU.

Not the way the Steve Spurrier and defensive coordinator Bobby

Stoops have got this precision-tuned engine humming. Yesterday's

65-0 road kill of hapless Kentucky was just another

disheartening reminder of how much the gap between Florida and

the rest of the Southeastern Conference has widened.

Between now and Nov. 30, all the Gators have to chew on are a

bunch of SEC lightweights. Yes, LSU and Auburn, that includes

you. The only sweating Gators fans will be doing in the next

eight weeks is when quarterback Danny Wuerffel gets up limping,

as he did briefly after throwing a nullified touchdown pass on

yesterday's third series.

I know, Florida hasn't exactly done a bang-up job of protecting

this precious jewel. The first time it got possession of a No. 1

ranking, in 1985, the Gators lost it the very next week against

Georgia. Two years ago, after a four-week stay atop the polls,

against Auburn ruined a certain shot at the national title. …

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