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Is UCF the Premier Program in the State of Florida?

Sep 2, 2021; Orlando, Florida, USA; UCF Knights head coach Gus Malzahn looks on during warms up before the game against the Boise State Broncos at Bounce House. Mandatory Credit: Mike Watters-USA TODAY Sports

We are less than 48 hours away from the Big 12 adding four new schools. On Saturday, BYU, Cincinnati, Houston, and UCF will officially join the conference. It’s been nearly two full years since the four schools agreed to join the Big 12 and finally, the time is almost here. However, there still seems to be a little disrespect from certain folks in the media when it comes to one school in particular.

UCF seems to be a hot topic lately and they apparently caught the eye of someone who works at Barstool Sports. Normally I wouldn’t give them the time of day but when you mention a Big 12 school (especially twice in two days) then you go from having my curiosity to having my attention.


Ohios Tate (get it? Ohios Tate sounds like Ohio State? Hardy har har.) took offense to this tweet from the UCF Twitter account.

Obviously, it’s a troll job by UCF here due to the fact that they are the only Big 12 school in the sunshine state. But Ohios Tate wasn’t having it as he started going off on UCF talking about their self-proclaimed 2017 National Championship and told them to hang another banner. Which honestly is a little funny to take a friendly jab there because that is what college football is all about.

However, what really caught my attention was his article talking about UCF not being one of the premier brands in the state of Florida. Recently UCF head coach Gus Malzahn had this to say about his school. “You, here, think about the Big Three. Florida, Miami, and Florida State. “It’s time for the Big Four. You look at the last six, eight years, we’ve been, as good or better as any of those other programs.”


Of course, that triggered him once again as he called out UCF for the second time in two days. I read his post and found a few things interesting that I would like to point out. He said that lions don’t concern themselves with sheep and then called UCF a nobody like he was too good to be talking about them. That makes me wonder what he talks about when he has to talk about any school that isn’t a traditional blue blood. That would mean about 90% of college football would be considered nobody’s and if that’s the case, the Big Ten has plenty of them too.

He then went on to say that “Florida, Florida State, and The U are lightyears ahead of UCF on reputation alone. And it’s going to take a whole lot more than “the last six, eight years” to change that. That’s fine so why don’t we look a little longer here at some of these schools?

Florida has not done anything relevant since 2008. They haven’t won a conference title since then and they are on their fourth head coach since 2014 and are coming off back-to-back losing seasons. As for Florida State, I will give them some credit because they have won a national championship in the last ten years but outside of last season, they were awful between 2017-2021. Of course, I can’t forget about Miami. Out of UCF, Florida, and Florida State nobody has been as bad as Miami. The Hurricanes have had one ten-win season in the last 20 years. ONE. The last time Miami won a conference title, they were in the Big East, and they left that conference in 2004.


As for UCF, they have been light years better than Miami in the last 20 years, and over the last 12 years, they have been better than Florida. In fact, they even beat Florida in a bowl game two years ago. Florida State had a good run and maybe they are coming back with Mike Norvell but that still isn’t a sure thing. You see, no college football program in the state of Florida has been better than UCF over the last decade. The Knights have had multiple ten-win seasons and have won multiple conference titles.

Ohios Tate wrapped up his article with this. “At the end of the day, I get what Gus Malzahn is doing and trying to ignite excitement for his program and jump tiers in recruiting, I just disagree with him. He’s been the coach of UCF for two years, going 8-4 and finishing 3rd in the AAC, and going 9-3 and finishing second. No, that’s not the ACC, that’s the AAC.”

He’s right. UCF isn’t in the ACC because they were in the AAC. But one could argue that the AAC has been better than the ACC over the past two seasons. Plus, one of those blue blood he was talking about plays in the ACC and they don’t even play in the same division as Clemson, yet they have only won their division once in the last decade. But you know what? Forget about the ACC, ACC, or even the SEC. UCF is in the Big 12 now and they are here to stay. And whether you like it or not, they are one of the premier programs not just in the state of Florida but in all of college football. It just seems like some people haven’t been paying attention.  

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