Throughout the 2020 regular season, Florida defensive coordinator Todd Grantham took heat for his unit's struggles on the field.
The Gators surrendered nearly 29 points per game this season, which puts them in the middle of the pack nationally. On five occasions, they allowed 35 or more points, including 37 in an upset loss to LSU two weeks ago and 52 in a six-point loss to Alabama in the SEC Championship Game last Saturday.
Grantham hasn't just faced criticism for Florida's defensive failures. He's also been the subject of rumors about his job security.
In a media session on Tuesday, Grantham addressed questions about his future and the Gators' defensive issues.
“My concern’s always the next opponent. If you look over the last four years, we’ve put together some pretty good defenses,” Grantham said, via SDS. “We’ve had some challenges this year with a lot of things that are going on, and you take the situations that come up and you take the situation you make the best of it and you find ways to win games.
"So from an evaluation standpoint, when you look at it, this will be our third New Year’s Six since coming here. We got to the SEC Championship Game and we were six points away. Last year we played Georgia and we were seven points away, and the comment was what’s the difference between us and Georgia, we said seven points. Right now, what’s the difference between us and the SEC Championship Game, it’s six points.”
It is true that Florida came up only a touchdown short against Alabama, and it's also true that no one has really been able to slow the Crimson Tide down this season.
Still, when your defense gives up 130 points in your team's three losses, there are bound to be questions about your performance.
Grantham would like nothing more than to answer the critics with a strong showing in the Cotton Bowl against Oklahoma.