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Wednesday May 15, 2013 The Florida-Georgia rivalry, May speaking tour version

Updated: 7:27pm, May 15


The Gators and Bulldogs butt heads again Nov. 2 in Jacksonville.

GAINESVILLE, Fla. – College football news is slow right now -- well, real news at least -- so look for more stories like the one that came out of Jacksonville on Wednesday night over the next three months from coast-to-coast.

If you missed an earlier blog I posted, Florida coach Will Muschamp spoke to the Jacksonville Gator Club. As you might expect, he was asked about the Florida-Georgia rivalry.

More specifically, what is he doing to make sure the rivalry turns back in favor of the Gators following back-to-back losses to the Bulldogs?

As coaches do at these types of events full of boosters, alumni and hardcore fans, Muschamp served up a crowd pleaser.

“Well, it’s not going to be a long winning streak, I can assure you of that,’’ Muschamp quipped. “We’re very comfortable [in that] … Very disappointed for our football team and the Gator Nation that we didn’t get the job done. Looking forward to the game this year.”

Georgia defensive coordinator Todd Grantham happened to be in Atlanta on Thursday to speak at a similar event for Bulldogs fans called UGA Days.

Naturally, reporters asked Grantham about Muschamp’s comments.

Grantham, you might remember, drew the ire of Florida fans in 2010 when he gave the “choke” sign and yelled in the direction of Gators kicker Chas Henry as Henry lined up for a 37-yard field goal in overtime. Henry made the kick and Florida won, 34-31, its 18th win in 21 meetings between the two longtime SEC rivals.

Here is what Grantham had to say Thursday about Muschamp’s comments: “I mean, what do you expect him to say. Will’s a guy that I know personally and I think he’s done a good job at Florida. I think he’s very competitive, as we all are as coaches. He’s a guy that wants to win. I think he’s just trying to fire up the people in Jacksonville.

“The bottom line is, in this league, you win with individual performance and mental and physical toughness and you do it on the field. The fact is, the last two years we’ve won in Florida and we’ve won the SEC East. From that standpoint, that stuff has no effect on me.”

To read the Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s story you can click this link.

So, there you have the latest squabble in the Gators-Bulldogs rivalry. Somewhere former Gators coach Steve Spurrier is probably smiling.

The Florida-Georgia game has always been my favorite one on the schedule. Like Muschamp, looking forward to Nov. 2 at Everbank Field.

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