This time, Florida took care of business and still lost the No. 1 ranking.
The Gators, despite winning their season opener by 49 points, dropped to No. 2 behind Nebraska in The Associated Press college football poll on Sunday.Coach Steve Spurrier joked Saturday night that being ranked No. 1 was so new to Florida fans that they hadn't taken advantage of the opportunity to chant "We're No. 1" while the Gators were beating New Mexico State 70-21.
"Right at the corner of the stadium in the fourth quarter, a group tried to get it going. But I guess everyone went home to go to sleep," he said. "Hopefully, if we are fortunate to be there again next week, we can teach them."
The lessons will have to wait.
Nebraska, who had the weekend off after beating West Virginia 31-0 in its opener on Aug. 28, edged the Gators by three points in the nationwide media poll. The Cornhuskers got 23 first-place votes and 1,465 points, while Florida received 15 first-place votes and 1,462 points.
Spurrier, whose team also dropped in the USA Today-CNN coaches' poll, took the change in stride.
"It doesn't really bother us," he said Sunday. "Nebraska was very impressive last week, and it was a game that a lot of coaches and media representatives watched because there were no other games.
"We played last night and not many saw our game and probably thought that we scored a lot in the second half when we actually scored 56 in the first half. Nebraska is a deserving team, as are probably several others. The voting was so close in the preseason polls that this type of flip-flopping was quite likely."
The only other time Florida was ranked No. 1 in the AP poll, the Gators' reign also lasted one game. The Gators reached the top on Nov. 4, 1985, but lost to Georgia 24-3 the following weekend.
"I said it was an honor to be No. 1, but that there was no guarantee we'd be there the next week or the week after," Spurrier said.
"There is so much football to be played by us and others. We just have to concentrate on taking care of our business and a lot of good things will happen later in the year."
Since the AP began its preseason poll in 1950, no team has gone wire-to-wire ranked No. 1 to win the national championship. Eight teams started at No. 1 and eventually finished on top - the last being Florida State in 1993.