It’s nearly impossible to tell a story about Urban Meyer’s Florida Gators program without discussing off-the-field controversy and the numerous arrests and allegations players faced during that era. But somehow, it seems the new Swamp Kings documentary has found a way to do just that.
As many have pointed out on social media following the documentary’s release, Swamp Kings completely avoids nearly every controversial topic surrounding the Florida Gators teams of that era, seemingly only highlighting the success the team had on the field.
As our own Joe Lucia of Awful Announcing points out in his review of the documentary, it seems like Swamp Kings is made for the subjects and not viewers, leading to quite a whitewashed and flat version of the story.
As college football media personality Jim Weber points out, the documentary omitted anything related to Aaron Hernandez who was later convicted of murder, failed to mention Mike and Maurkice Pouncey who were accused of assault and using homophobic slurs at a night club, and avoided discussing the stolen laptop that led to Cam Newton leaving the program.
OK, finished binging "Swamp Kings" on 1.5 x speed and man, how disappointing.
Just off the top of my head, things omitted from the doc include: pic.twitter.com/4frxqV4xYh
— Jim Weber (@JimMWeber) August 22, 2023
It also omitted Percy Harvin allegedly attacking wide receivers coach Billy Gonzales, Carlos Dunlap’s arrest before the 2009 SEC Championship game, Chris Rainey threatening to kill his girlfriend, and Meyer’s chest pain that ultimately led to his retirement from the team.
Obviously, based on how the documentary was advertised, this left people rather disappointed with the end product.
For those saying “what did you expect?” I hear you, especially knowing Meyer was involved. But rewatch the trailer. It literally markets itself as being about the off-field stuff as much as the on-field stuff. Even the name “Swamp Kings” implies it https://t.co/RTIrgTvHQ1
— Ben Axelrod (@BenAxelrod) August 23, 2023
I still enjoyed the documentary from a pure football perspective. But it just left me wanting more info about off the field
— Cruz Oxenreider (@TheRealCruzOx) August 23, 2023
Florida fans mad at this.
Don’t act dumb. That doc wasn’t made to celebrate your success during that time.
The documentary series is literally called “Untold Stories”
Those Florida teams are the most interesting teams in sports history for OBVIOUS reasons.
And they didn’t…
— Jack McGuire (@JackMacCFB) August 23, 2023
Are you telling me you aren't interested in a puff piece about the most egotistical coach to ever live?
— Wyatt (@hooplawyatt) August 23, 2023
The Saudis can take lessons from Netflix with Swamp Kings sports washing.
— Matt Hayes (@MattHayesCFB) August 23, 2023
So if you were looking for a documentary that glorifies the Urban Meyer Florida Gators without much mention of the off-the-field drama, Swamp Kings is for you. But if you expected anything else, it’s probably a miss.