GAINESVILLE -- A reoccurring theme here on Gator Clause has revolved around our fascination with the sports media's constant need to blow things out of proportion. Take, for example, the apparent "importance" of the Florida-Georgia rivalry in terms of recruiting. Pretty much everyone except the Miami Herald wrote that story last week, but it couldn't be further from the truth.
In truth, the outcome of the Florida-Georgia game doesn't really have an impact on recruiting at all. How do we know this? Well, Florida doesn't get all the good recruits but it does win most of the games. Florida is 17-3 against Georgia in the last 20 years. Now, has the recruiting been that lopsided? No.
Another thing about recruiting ... Schools can't even invite recruits to the Florida-Georgia game because it's a neutral-field rivalry. The NCAA says high school prospects can't visit during neutral-field rivalries. How the heck is it suppose to affect recruiting if there aren't even any recruits there to see it? Silly.
Our fascination with excitable reporters continues ... Just last week, every national media columnist was ready to write Tim Tebow off as an overrated quarterback who somehow lucked into a 17-game winning streak and had finally been exposed as a glorified fullback. Well, on second thought ... reporters LOVE to blow things out of proportion.
We're guilty of it here on Gator Clause as well. We write things like, "Tim Tebow is better than your team's best player." Is there any way of proving this? Speaking of things reporters can't prove, has anyone heard about this "skirmish" between Brandon Spikes and Tim Tebow after the Mississippi State game? Sounds ludicrous, right? Well, guess what? It is ludicrous. There was no fight between Spikes and Tebow, spoken or otherwise.
Here's how this rumor got started. A columnist from a Florida newspaper was apparently given some inside information that he filtered through his reporter's brain and interpreted incorrectly as a confrontation between Spikes and Tebow. Said reporter then asked Spikes about it after the Georgia game, but Spikes tried to explain that the post-Mississippi State locker-room scene was "all positive."
Now, in reality, the speeches after the Mississippi State game -- Tebow, Spikes and Mike Pouncey participated -- were extremely passionate, from the heart and helped to bring the team together. But if you read some accounts of the what apparently went on inside the Mississippi State locker room, there was some kind of great schism formed between Spikes and Tebow.
Why does this make absolutely no sense?
No.1: Spikes didn't even play against Mississippi State. What's he going to do, dress down Florida's best player after the game when he couldn't even play? No.
No.2: Spikes came to Florida because of Tebow. Spikes stayed for his senior season at UF partly because Tebow did. You think one bad game by Tebow is going to all of sudden cause Spikes to lash out at Tebow in front of the whole team? Don't be stupid, people.
If you want to know what really went down in the locker room at Mississippi State, then read this. LINK!
And now, a dramatic interpretation of the "skirmish" between Florida linebacker Brandon Spikes and UGA running back Washaun Ealey. Later, Ealey struggles in vain to regain his vision. (WARNING: This video clip contains strong language, strong violence and bodily mutilation. If you're a kid, don't watch it because it will rot your brain and scar you for life just like it did your parents!)