On weekend that saw Florida's BCS rivals Texas and Alabama (nearly) fall to in-state rivals, Florida showed how it was done against Florida State, hammering the Seminoles by the 'close' score of 37-10.
Yesterday we at the VFA made the point that winning rivalry games was often a question of who 'wanted it more'.
Now, we'd like to correct ourselves. We're quite aware that both sides 'want' to win. It's obvious- college football players don't exactly go out to lose, do they? But get this - if you impress during a rivalry game, then everyone gives you the thumbs up on Thanksgiving Weekend - even if you were playing a defense as horrific as Florida State's was.
Florida State's problem isn't about speed. The speed that Florida State (as a team) has - in our view from watching an awful lot of teams this season - is second to none in the country. But defense-wise, it's second to about everybody. I think that even Indiana would be disappointed with scoring under 30 against the 'Noles if the two met up. That is the poverity of FSU's defense.
Mind you, Texas A&M and Auburn's weren't great either. But it was Florida who exploited the weaknesses of Florida State's - as they did last year - and you have the feeling that had the 2009 match-up been in Doak Campbell, the result would have been exactly the same. And to make matters worse for the Bowdeners, Florida's defense was dominant - if you discount the drive in garbage time that gave FSU a spectacular touchdown (worth Youtubing).
And Tim Tebow, was, well, Tim Tebow. There was one horrible fumble late on in the game that the Tebow-haters enjoyed (and we still can't believe that the SEC officials didn't call him for an offensive facemask too), but otherwise, you can hardly complain with 17-21, 221 yard, 3 touchdown effort, could you? We doubt that he'll put up the same gaudy numbers against Alabama going against a fearsome defensive front, but we think he'll do pretty well.