Crunching the Numbers: Florida Gators vs. Texas AM Aggies

University of Florida head coach Jim McElwain reacts to a play during the Florida Gators loss to Texas A&M / Gator Country photo by David Bowie Normally, this article is strictly statistics about the Florida Gators.

It won’t be today.

Sure, I will post some statistics below, because I owe that to you.

But today, I need to air my grievances, because I am a freelancer and am given some additional leeway that may not exist for those that cover the team every day.

I like Jim McElwain and I think he can be the right guy to lead the team.

However, and you knew that was coming, as the CEO of the Florida Gators football program he is struggling and that “can” will quickly become “can’t”.

I think he has done a lot of great things: he has updated facilities, he has improved social media, and he has recruited some very well balanced classes. He is well respected, has good relationships with former players and boosters, and has been able to wrangle in millions of dollars for the football program. He has steered clear of NCAA violations, has done a seemingly good job with the credit card scandal, and has otherwise has built a good program.

And while all of that is true, there are a few major issues that could bring down his tenure – and that is loyalty. There is a good quote that I often use and I think it applies here, “loyalty is good, until it isn’t.” It’s not very deep or very articulate, but it has a great message – it is great to be loyal to your friends, staff, players, or whomever, but it is important to remember the answer is not always loyalty when you are running a multi-million dollar enterprise.

You should be loyal to your staff, but it should not be blind loyalty.

Loyalty encourages you to look past glaring issues and in isolation loyalty can be very negative for leaders and managers.

Loyalty is what is holding back Jim McElwain and could one day end his tenure at Florida.

There are two areas of loyalty are currently hurting Jim McElwain.

Loyalty to Coaching Staff Every coach wants to be around coaches that they have a relationship with, trust, and have known for a long time. But if you look at the glaring weaknesses on staff, they start with the coaches that he has known the amongst longest: Greg Nord and Doug Nussmeier.Greg Nord, in my opinion, has two of the worst position groups under his watch – special teams and tight ends – and I have yet to see improvement in either area. His special teams ranks 104 th in punt return, 79 th in kick return, 111 th in opponent punt return, and 129 th in punt return yardage allowed – that is putrid in all facets. They look lost, they are missing blocks on gunners, and has despite one of the best punters in the country, a very mediocre punt success rate because of their inability to […]