These Gators are Singular Greatness


They won’t be remembered as among the greatest teams ever. Not even close. Times have changed too much and we’ll not likely ever a college basketball team that would be able to shine the shoes of the greatest teams from UCLA, Indiana, Kentucky, UNLV, Georgetown, Duke and North Carolina.

And yet the Florida Gators deserve their own place on the mantel. Not simply because they became the first team in 15 years to successfully defend their national title last night by overcoming a resilient Ohio State team, 84-75, in ATL. But because of the unique all-or-nothing pact made by the team’s stars last season in which they all decided to forgo NBA riches for at least a year and return to Gainesville and chase history.

Even had they not won the title, the crew – Joakim Noah (above, center), Al Horford and Corey Brewer (above, left), the only one among them who TRULY needed the dough – should have been lauded for their decision, and for enduring the pressure and detractors that dogged their heels throughout the season. That they did makes them truly special.

Hope you TiVo’d the game. We won’t likely see the likes of it again.


6 thoughts on “These Gators are Singular Greatness

  1. And more than that, they caused me to win my ESPN Tourney Challenge competition. All hail the Gators!

  2. AG says:

    Dude… his name is Corey Brewer, not Terrence Green…

  3. gzino says:

    To go B2B in this age is incredible – they were dominant in both tourneys. 20 years from now we’ll be looking back at them as the last B2B. Other programs should emulate this Gator blueprint – don’t go for the superstars that are one and done – get a bunch of the next level kids that will fill roles, stick for 3 or 4, and learn to play as a real team – e.g. anybody notice how well the gators passed the ball and played team D through the tourney? The Gators have done to the NCAA what our international friends have recently done to us in the Olympics while we’ve been using the assemble an all-star team for a few months model…

  4. Now that the tourney is over, I’m wondering why we even thought someone COULD knock off Florida. They had answers for everything last night and they’ve been like that all year. I love OSU but can’t take anything away from Florida. I hope Donovan stays there and builds that program up even further.

  5. Not once have I even considered this team to be among the best ever. They have just never given off that “special” vibe once to me while watching them like some of the UNLV or Duke teams ever have in my eyes. Even that UConn team with Okafor and Gordon had somewhat of an aura. I just never felt it here. Don’t get me wrong, great tourny team, just not an all time great. Just a gut feeling I guess.

  6. Juan says:

    Always thought they were the faves. You can never count out the champ. They’re the champ till someone knocks em off.

    Sure, Vandy, LSU and Tenn got them this year, but that was gonna happen. You’re gonna lose some in conference.

    UNLV never lost in conference, because they were playing in the Big West at the time. Of course, they seemed invincible. I got to see some of those games, because I live on the West Coast, but the rest of the country never got to see whether they were any good, except come tourney time because they were playing Fullerton, UCSB, etc. So they appeared invincible because they were killing those squads by 30.

    This FLA was a GREAT team. How could they not be? Two in a row people. Also a fun team to watch.

    When someone asks me years from now, what were the best college teams you ever saw. FLA is going to be right there.

    Remember UNLV , as good as they were, never repeated. UConnn only got one as well.

    I think the older we get, the better we think the things from our past were. And that includes ball clubs, players,etc.

    Let’s give these Gators their props. Also, have you ever seen a player not named Laettner get hated on like Noah?

    I never saw Noah do anything offensive on the floor other than have about 50 baby dolphin teeth jammed in his mouth, and he can’t help that. Dude played hard in college. I don’t get why he got the hate flung at him.

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