DIBIASE: Despite Florida’s success, ‘Nova still champs in my book

Justin Dibiase

John Smith relaxes in his sophomore dorm on the campus of the University of Florida. Life is good for John; since enrolling at the university, he has experienced three major college championships in two years: football in ’06 and basketball in ’06 and ’07 (not to mention the Gator gymnastic team’s No. 1 national ranking). He thinks back to two years ago when he chose UF over Villanova and is happy with his decision. After all, he is paying about $16,000 less per year at Florida and is sitting in 80 degrees of sunshine while his old high school buddies are shivering in the harsh Pennsylvania climate. Little does John know that the choice that he made two years ago will eventually lead to his doom. As we all know here at Villanova, the University of Florida is a poor excuse for a collegiate institution. The first thing we as Villanovans live by is our motto: Veritas, Unitas, Caritas. Florida, on the other hand, boasts its motto, “The welfare of the state depends upon the morals of its citizens.” If they believe this to be true, then welfare of the UF community must be in worse shape than Tom Cruise’s family in “War of the Worlds.” What type of morals is Billy Donovan teaching his team? Four of his players are leaving college before earning a diploma to declare for the NBA draft. The only players in recent memory who have pulled that stunt at Villanova were Tim Thomas, Michael Bradley and Kyle Lowry.

Also, what are these three championships teaching the students of the University? They have won three championships within 12 months. The entire campus has become spoiled. When their graduates go out into the job world, they will most likely be the laziest, most idle workers in their fields, and in turn, America will suffer economically. While Villanova’s disappointing exits in the NCAA tournament teach its student body hard work and persistence, the students down in Gainesville sip iced teas by the pool without a care in the world. This type of Gator sluggishness was typified by former Florida Heisman Trophy winner Danny Wuerffel after his 1996 team won the national championship in the Sugar Bowl. When Wuerffel entered the pros, he struggled mightily and could not find a team that wanted him. The highlight of his playing days came with the Rhein Fire of NFL Europe when he was named MVP of the World Bowl.

On the other side of the mirror, we look at Brian Westbrook from Villanova. He worked hard at this Division I-AA school to make a name for himself, returning punts and kicks, catching and running. Even after he broke the NCAA all-time, all-purpose yards record, the 5-foot-8-inch running back wasn’t taken in the 2002 NFL draft until the third round. Since being drafted, Westbrook has transformed into an all-pro running back for the Philadelphia Eagles.

When John Smith steps off campus into Gainesville, he will not find a friendly Ferrari dealership and quaint coffee shops like on the Main Line. In 2004, the National Coalition for the Homeless ranked Gainesville as the fifth “meanest city” due to its policy on prosecuting the homeless. Gainesville also boasts a median family income of around $44,000, only a mere $70,000 away from the Radnor Township families. Radnor Township is known for the Sorrell House, a tavern that George Washington once inhabited. Gainesville, more excitingly, is known for the “Gainesville Green,” a powerful strain of marijuana.

Still not convinced John Smith made a mistake in choosing UF? Take a look at the head football and basketball coaches at Florida, Urban Meyer and Donovan. It appears while John Smith visited UF before enrolling, he forgot to ask about a crucial part of campus life: fashion. Meyer and Donovan usually look as though they purchased their clothes at the flea market. Andy Talley and Jay Wright’s threads, however, would blow Joan Rivers’ mind if they ever met on a red carpet.

Although we here at Villanova know the monumental mistake John Smith has made, many Floridians would disagree. To settle the score, I would love to see a rematch of last year’s Elite Eight basketball game between our Wildcats and the Gators. With the newly established Big East-SEC invitational, hopefully the rematch will come sooner rather than later. As for the three consecutive major collegiate sport championships, Florida needs to stop or be stopped. After all, nobody likes a showoff.


Justin DiBiase is a sophomore civil engineering major from Franklinville, N.J. He can be reached at [email protected]