Spurrier’s first year, 1990, the Gators were on probation. The Gators would have won the SEC Championship had they been eligible, and would have gone to the Sugar Bowl. They did “win it on the field” for the third time and did show quite an improvement from the train wreck Spurrier inherited from the previous coach.
Meyer’s first year, 2005, was very similar. He took over after the Ron Zook fiasco. Meyer was able to take UF within one win of the SEC Championship Game (ironically, a loss to Spurrier at South Carolina cost them the East Division). Meyer did beat Tennessee, Georgia, Florida State, and Iowa in the Outback Bowl.