Georgia hated former Florida head coach Steve Spurrier. His team regularly whomped the Dawgs, and he made a practice of running up the score. And he showed no respect, once calling Georgia coach Ray Goff "Ray Goof."
There was a time, though …
When things were pretty bad for Florida. Gators fans eased the pain by giving the worst losses their own nicknames:
1975: "Appleby to Washington"
1976: "Fourth and Dumb"
1980: "Lindsay Scott"
1985: "One Whole Week"
The Classic Game
Nov. 8, 1980. Florida up by 1 with 90 seconds left. Georgia at its own 7. Third-and-11. Georgia QB Buck Belue, on the run, completes a pass to Lindsay Scott, who catches it at the 25. Georgia broadcaster Larry Munson makes the call: "Lindsay Scott! ... 35, 40! ... Lindsay Scott! ... 45, 50! ... 45, 40! ... Run, Lindsay! ... 25, 20! ... 15, 10, 5! ... Lindsay Scott! ... Lindsay Scott! ... Lindsay Scott!"
Ten years later, Belue was in Belize on business. While at a restaurant, a man sitting next to him stared, and said, "Are you Buck Belue? You are, aren't you? My gosh, I was there that day for Lindsay Scott. One of the happiest days of my life."
At that moment, Belue understood what he had been a part of. "Man, I was in Belize. I started thinking, 'This thing is bigger than I even imagined.'"
"The World's Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party"
Oh, there's some real hatred, but for the most part it's pretty friendly during the days-long tailgate that goes on before and after the game.
Florida grad Frank Brass told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution in 1997 that he hadn't missed a Georgia-Florida matchup since 1949. He recalled, "One year, we danced until 3 a.m., and that was with the Georgia fans after they beat us." Margaret Williamson, a 90-year-old Georgia fan, might have been among them. "I'm a Bulldog," she said in the parking lot before this year's game. "But that doesn't mean I hate the Gators. There are some very nice Gators."
From its humble beginnings as an undercard for horse racing at the South Carolina state fair, the Clemson-South Carolina game, played yearly on a Thursday at the fair in Columbia, grew into an unofficial state holiday. "Big Thursday" came to an end with the 1959 contest.
All the war talk is supposed to be metaphorical, guys …
The Fighting Gamecocks won the 1902 game, 12-6. That night, during a military parade, South Carolina students mocked Clemson with an image of a Gamecock crowing over a tiger. In response, 400 very angry Clemson cadets wielding swords and bayonets stormed the South Carolina campus, but were stopped at the entrance by SC students with better gear -- namely, guns and rifles.
Nobody got hurt, but the series was called off for six years.
Two Big Plays
1. "The Catch" (1977): Steve Fuller to Jerry Butler, who makes a spectacular end-zone catch with 49 seconds left to give Clemson a 31-27 win.
2. "The Push" (2000): Woodrow Dantzler to Rod Gardner, who shoves South Carolina defensive back Andre Goodman just before reeling in the 50-yard toss with 10 seconds left, setting up the game-winning field goal for Clemson.
Thanks to the Charlotte Observer, which in its Nov. 22, 1996 edition published a small collection:
1. A drunk stood on a table at a noisy bar.
"Listen up, y'all," he shouted. "I want to tell a Carolina joke."
Immediately, a man, a big man, a 6-foot-5, 270-pound man, got to his feet.
"Buddy, let me warn you," he told the drunk. "I played football at Carolina."
"No problem," said the drunk. "I plan to tell it real slow."