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Jimmy Buffett hangs out with Florida Gators coach Urban Meyer on sideline

Jimmy Buffett

Jimmy Buffett

GAINESVILLE — It's the only present Urban Meyer ever wants. Every year.

So for Meyer, Florida's 50-point beatdown of South Carolina was almost secondary to having singer Jimmy Buffett on the sideline as his special guest.

Buffet was in the postgame locker room, and you could hear Margaritaville blaring on the sound system.

"In all seriousness, that's way up there," a smiling Meyer said. "And I don't get awed by many people. That's a hell of a deal, man. You guys don't believe me."

To get the full understanding of this, you have to know Meyer. He proudly proclaims that Buffett is the only music he listens to and once said his dream date with his wife — before the children were born — would be a private concert with Buffett in his back yard. (He lists anything with the family as his ideal, now.) The two met at the Super Bowl in Miami a few years ago.

"We've been inviting him for three years," said Shelley Meyer, Urban's wife. "Urban's only birthday wish every year is to see a Jimmy Buffett concert, so we go see him in concert. It was great to have him here."

Funny thing is, the Gator players were oblivious.

"I didn't really know who he was, but coach loves him so he must be a pretty good singer," WR/RB Percy Harvin said.

"I didn't know him," LB Brandon Spikes said. "He sings margarita something, right?"

They may not know who he is, but they liked something he said.

"He said it's a pleasure meeting me, he loves watching me and hopefully, we'll see him in Miami," QB Tim Tebow said.

For Buffett, it was also a special night.

"It's great to be back in Gainesville seeing the Gators playing this well," he said. "I like what Coach Meyer is doing here. This has been a lot of fun, tonight."

By the way, if you're wondering Meyer's favorite Buffett song?

"It's Five O'Clock Somewhere," Meyer said.

HARVIN'S BIG NIGHT: Harvin's 26-yard touchdown run with 3:52 left in the first quarter marked the 12th consecutive game in which he has scored a TD, a streak that ties for first nationally with Michael Crabtree of Texas Tech. Harvin has six rushing TDs this season and 15 in his career. On the opening play of the second half, Harvin rushed for a career-long 80-yard touchdown. With 476 rushing yards this season, Harvin owns the top three spots in the Florida record book for single-season rushing yards by a wide receiver (764 in 2007, 428 in 2006).

LEGENDS ABOUND: The Florida coaching legacy was in full effect Saturday, with three former Gators at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium. Along with former coach Steve Spurrier, former UF coaches Doug Dickey (1970-78) and Ray Graves (1960-70 as head coach, 1971-80 as athletic director) were in attendance. Graves, a Tampa resident who coached Spurrier as a Gator player, turns 90 on Dec. 31.

INJURY UPDATE: Former Middleton standout LB A.J. Jones did not play after suffering a posterior cruciate ligament sprain last week against Vanderbilt. Meyer said the staff was hopeful Jones would play, but at game time, he was unable to go. OL Carl Johnson suffered an MCL sprain and was helped off the field with 58 seconds remaining in the third quarter. OL Jason Watkins suffered a concussion but is not expected to miss any playing time, Meyer said.

Jimmy Buffett hangs out with Florida Gators coach Urban Meyer on sideline 11/15/08 [Last modified: Saturday, November 15, 2008 9:30pm]

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