GAINESVILLE, Fla. (AP) — The Florida-Miami series has provided memorable moments, tantalizing trash talk and enough football fodder to maintain bitterness for decades.
Good thing, too, because after Saturday’s game between the 10th-ranked Gators and the Hurricanes in Miami, the in-state rivals might not play each other for a while – at least not in the regular season.
”You never say never, but it’s really, really difficult,” Florida athletic director Jeremy Foley said Monday.
Foley pointed to the potential of the Southeastern Conference moving to a nine-game league schedule as well as lost revenue from a home-and-home series.
”People don’t want to hear this, but it’s the fact of the matter,” he said. ”When you take a home game out of here, it cost you significant dollars. … You can’t do that every other year and try to run a sports program at the level we’re trying to run it.
”I think everybody thinks that’s not a big deal. Well, it’s a big deal.”
Florida set aside $700,000 over the last four years to offset the loss of a home game in 2013, Foley said.
The best chance the series has of being renewed – aside from a bowl game – would be as a neutral-site venture, Foley said.
”Maybe that’s what the future holds somewhere down the road,” he said. ”Obviously, I won’t be making this decision forever. I just think it’s very hard for the University of Florida to play this game. We’re excited to go down there. Obviously, a great rivalry, great history, great tradition, but it’s just a difficult game to play on any kind of consistent basis.”
Continue Reading: No rematch in sight for rivals Florida, Miami