Relitigating the LSU-Florida Mess

Hi, there. Paul and I have a long-running argument over the status of our rivalry with Florida. I have maintained that we have played some great games against them and I enjoy close, meaningful games, I don’t really have any particular ill will towards the Gators like I do towards, say, Auburn. Paul’s counterpoint is that Gainesville should be burned to the ground and the fields sown with salt.

The Florida athletic department its doing its best to get LSU fans to endorse Paul’s point of view. Yesterday, the school named LSU as its homecoming opponent, so they could stoke the fires of hatred just a little bit more.

This is likely a bad idea for them, as LSU celebrates the tenth anniversary of the Jacob Hester game this year. It’s also the 20 th anniversary of LSU’s upset win over Florida which got Kevin Faulk on the cover of SI and marked the beginning of the Golden Age of LSU football. It’s the 30 th anniversary of LSU’s last win over Florida before the Spurrier win streak. It’s the 40 th anniversary of that time we beat them in 1977, and it’s been 50 years since we beat them in 1967. Every ten years, LSU brings its A-game to the Gators.

But, okay. It’s the most recent petty shot at LSU by a school that didn’t realize hurricanes were dangerous and refused to make any contingency plans for the weekend. And when it was less than 48 hours before the game and it turns out people were evacuating and law and medical personnel would be otherwise occupied so they couldn’t logistically pull off a football game and party for 100,000 people, Florida publicly blamed LSU for it.

The predictable folks have blamed LSU for the debacle. I mean, I’m flattered LSU has its own troll in the national media, so let’s check in on his version of events: Love Florida scheduling LSU as its homecoming opponent. Spices up a rivalry after LSU’s mishandling of last year’s Hurricane Matthew game. — Barrett Sallee (@BarrettSallee) July 6, 2017 By mishandling, he means that LSU offered to play the games at a neutral site or at Tiger Stadium, going so far as to do the legwork to secure those sites to be ready for the weekend. Or offering to play the game on Sunday in Gainesville.

Of course, LSU couldn’t mishandle the situation because LSU had no control over the game. Foley refused to consider alternate sites or moving the game back a day, standing on his now infamous line, “the game will not be moved from Gainesville.”

Remember, that statement was AFTER Florida Governor Rick Scott stated “This storm will kill you” and that “the impact would be catastrophic.” But LSU is a bunch of babies for wanting to look at maybe moving the game somewhere else or back a day. And Foley was clearly putting safety first when he ignored the governor.

Foley then denied alternative sites were discussed and when the game was canceled, […]