1979 Florida Gators football team
|1979 Florida Gators football|
|1979 record||0–10–1 (0–6 10th SEC)|
|Head coach||Charley Pell|
|Offensive coordinator||Denny Aldrich|
|Defensive coordinator||Dwight Adams|
|Home stadium||Florida Field|
|1979 SEC football standings|
|#1 Alabama $||6||–||0||–||0||12||–||0||–||0|
The 1979 Florida Gators football team represented the University of Florida during the 1979 NCAA Division I-A football season. The season was Charley Pell's first of six as the new head coach of the Florida Gators football team. Pell arrived in Gainesville with a new plan for building the Gators football program—new offensive and defensive schemes, new assistant coaches, a new attitude and new boosters fund-raising model to support the program and improve the stadium and training facilities. Pell's plan would produce many on-the-field victories over the next five years, but his first campaign as the Gators coach produced the most losses in any single season in Gators football history, ending with a winless 0–10–1 overall record and a 0–6 record in the Southeastern Conference (SEC). The team, which was plagued by injuries, placed dead last among ten SEC teams. This was the last time until 2013 that Florida fielded a team with a losing record.
The 1979 Florida team had 4 starting quarterbacks: Tim Groves, Tyrone Young, Johnell Brown and Larry Ochab, and John Brantley also played at quarterback, though he did not start. Brantley was supposed to be the starting quarterback, but he was injured in the preseason.
Schedule and results
|9–15–1979||No. 13 Houston*||Jeppesen Stadium • Houston, Texas||L 10–14|
|9–22–1979||Georgia Tech*||Florida Field • Gainesville, Florida||T 7–7|
|9–29–1979||Mississippi State||Veterans Memorial Stadium • Jackson, Mississippi||L 10–24|
|10–6–1979||No. 17 Louisiana State||Tiger Stadium • Baton Rouge, Louisiana||L 3–20|
|10–13–1979||No. 2 Alabama||Florida Field • Gainesville, Florida||L 0–40|
|10–27–1979||Tulsa*||Florida Field • Gainesville, Florida (HC)||L 10–20|
|11–3–1979||No. 20 Auburn||Jordan-Hare Stadium • Auburn, Alabama||L 13–19|
|11–10–1979||Georgia||Gator Bowl Stadium • Jacksonville, Florida||ABC||L 10–33|
|11–17–1979||Kentucky||Florida Field • Gainesville, Florida||L 3–31|
|11–23–1979||No. 5 Florida State*||Florida Field • Gainesville, Florida||ABC||L 16–27|
|12–1–1979||Miami*||Orange Bowl Stadium • Miami, Florida||L 24–30|
|*Non-conference game. #Rankings from AP Poll released prior to game.|
Primary source: 2015 Florida Gators Football Media Guide
The next year, in 1980, the Florida Gators made a remarkable turnaround. They won the first three games of that season before a loss to Louisiana State crushed Florida's hopes of being undefeated, but they ended the regular season with 7 wins and 4 losses, and in the Tangerine bowl they defeated Maryland 35-20 to improve to 8-4. At the time, this Florida season was an NCAA record turnaround, and this was the first team to make a bowl game after being winless the previous season.
- 2015 Florida Gators Football Media Guide, University Athletic Association, Gainesville, Florida, p. 107 (2015). Retrieved August 16, 2015.