Comparing Meyer and Spurrier at Florida

There really is no comparison between what Urban Meyer has done in his first five years at Florida and what Steve Spurrier has done in his first five years at South Carolina.

Meyer is 19-6 against Top 25 opponents at Florida, while Spurrier is 7-15 against nationally ranked foes at South Carolina.

But a colleague of mine asked a fair question.

How does what Meyer has done at Florida against the best teams compare to what Spurrier did against the best teams during his 12 seasons in Gainesville?

Here you go:

  • Spurrier compiled a 44-25-1 record (.636) against Top 25 foes while he was at Florida.

  • In his first five seasons, Spurrier was 13-12-1 (.519) against Top 25 teams.

  • In his final five seasons, Spurrier was 21-11 (.656) against Top 25 teams.

One of the most amazing accomplishments for Spurrier at Florida was his 78-2 record against unranked teams. His only two losses to unranked teams were to Mississippi State in 2000 and Auburn in 2001. Meanwhile, Meyer has lost four games to unranked teams during his first five seasons at Florida.

Something to consider when you’re comparing the on-the-field accomplishments of Meyer and Spurrier at Florida is the consistency with which both men competed for, and won, SEC championships.

Spurrier won six SEC titles at Florida, one of those coming in 1991 before the advent of the SEC championship game. He played in six SEC championship games. Meyer has won two SEC titles and played in three SEC championship games.

The other thing to keep is that Spurrier went against much stronger Florida State teams. He faced the Seminoles 14 times as coach at Florida, and they were a Top 10 team in 13 of those contests. Spurrier finished just 5-8-1 against Florida State.

The highest the Seminoles have been ranked in Meyer’s five games against them was No. 23 on two different occasions. In three of the five games, they were unranked. Meyer is 5-0 against the Seminoles.

Nine of the 12 Tennessee teams Spurrier faced were ranked in the Top 10. He was 8-4 against the Vols, who’ve only been ranked in the Top 10 once (2005) when Meyer has gone against them as Florida’s coach. The last two Tennessee teams that Meyer has faced were unranked. Meyer is also 5-0 against the Vols.

Spurrier’s combined record against the Gators’ three traditional rivals -- Florida State, Georgia and Tennessee -- was 24-13-1 (.645).

Meyer is 14-1 (.933) against those three teams. His only loss was to Georgia in 2007.