This is not saying that football was taken lightly, but prior to the coming of Ray Graves in 1960 all the seriousness in the world and all the fun of the football weekends (the Florida-Georgia game used to be called the world's largest outdoor cocktail party) could not make Florida fans happy with their lot. Bob Woodruff, whom Graves succeeded, built a good athletic program—he is now athletic director at Tennessee—and won more football games than he lost, but he lost unspectacularly and the big games regularly. To compound his ills he was, by self-description, "the oratorical equivalent of a blocked punt."
Graves played for the conservative General Neyland at Tennessee and coached under the conservative Bobby Dodd at Georgia Tech, but when he went to Florida he promised, "We will not be dull." The first Florida play from scrimmage that year was a forward pass. Incomplete. The fans loved it. But better than that, that very first year his team won more games—nine—than any in Florida history, and the biggest of all was an 18-17 upset of Georgia Tech that was achieved when Graves ordered a two-point conversion after a last-minute touchdown. Dodd told Graves later, "You sure didn't learn that from me."
Since 1960, Florida has had three bowl teams and only one losing season, and twice finished second (but still never first) in the tough SEC. Ironically, this team that Graves has to go with the exceptionally talented Spurrier is not as good as some of those in the past. He is strong up the middle with Center Bill Carr—another preacher's son—Spurrier and Running Back Larry Smith, whose mother comes to the games in mink and calls down to the sidelines to have Larry please pull up his pants because they are too low. Do not be deceived. Smith is probably the toughest running back in the conference. Spurrier also has a good receiver in Richard Trapp, called "Killer" for his skinny body and multiple allergies. But other places are manned by people who simply believe in Spurrier. They are not, as Georgia proved last week, enough to complement even so extraordinary a player as Spurrier, who is, among other things, one of the loosest performers to come along in years—too loose, according to Jerri Spurrier. She arrived for a game in New Orleans five and a half hours late one night and found S.O.S. sound asleep. "Oh, I knew you'd make it," he said, smiling dreamily.
"It will take 13 men at the very least to stop Spurrier," Dooley said before the game. Georgia, which is now tied with Alabama for the SEC lead and very likely will end the season that way, played as though it had 13 men on the field. At least.