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Florida Gators Sets Gold Standard under Head Coach Kevin O’Sullivan

Kevin O’Sullivan has set a high bar for this Florida Gators program during his tenure as head coach. 

Winning is normal, losing is absolutely unacceptable and, no matter what, the College World Series is always the goal.

The Gators starting shortstop and Alabama transfer Colby Shelton reiterated that message in the postgame after Sunday’s thrilling victory over Clemson propelled the Gators to the College World Series. .

“Yeah, absolutely. That’s the main reason I came to Florida, for a chance to go to Omaha, and we’re going to Omaha,” Shelton said when asked about his reasoning for joining the Gators.  

Under O’Sullivan, it is the 9th time the Gators have made a Super Regional, per the Florida Gators. Furthermore, it marks nine-straight Super Regional victories. The longest streak since 1999 according to NCAA Baseball.

When looking at this year’s squad, it was looking more and more likely that they weren’t going to participate in postseason festivities like their predecessors. 

Yet, they found a way to their final destination of Omaha  that was plugged into the GPS at the beginning of the season and now have a chance to complete their goal of winning it all. 

It may have been backroads and there were some bumps along the way, but that isn’t important now. 

But this win means more than just a usual trip to Omaha for the Gators. This win also marks the 14th time to the mecca of college baseball in program history.

Getting to the College World Series is impressive on its own, but to do it nine times in 17 years at Florida just shows the golden standards that have been set for this institution by the skipper of the Orange & Blue. 

After losing both games to Southern Mississippi in the 2009 Super Regional, the Gators have not skipped a beat once making it to the second round of the tournament. 

Though this year seems to be a little bit different than in years past. 

Of the 14 Gator teams to have clinched a trip to Omaha, the 2024 squad had the least amount wins upon entering, per Florida Gators Senior Writer Scott Carter

They travel to Omaha with just 34 wins on the year. Before this year, the lowest number of wins for a Gators team entering Omaha was 45 in 2005, which was before O’Sullivan’s time. 

However, despite the record, O’Sullivan knew what he had with this team.

“We never lost faith in our team,” O’Sullivan said. “When you do get into the tournament, everybody starts with a clean slate.”

All it takes is one weekend for a team to find rhythm and show the world how dangerous they can be. 

And the worst thing anybody did this postseason was that they let this Gators team get hot.

Lastly, this win shows just how dominant Florida’s softball and baseball programs are in the country. 

They are the only school in 2024 to send their softball and baseball teams to the College World Series

So, like they say, in the SEC it just means more. 

Read More: Florida Gators Sets Gold Standard under Head Coach Kevin O’Sullivan

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