The Florida Gators (4-3, 3-2 SEC) will head up the road to Jacksonville this Saturday to take on the Georgia Bulldogs (4-3, 3-2 SEC) for the annual rivalry game between the two schools. Kick-off is scheduled for 3:30 and the game will be televised on CBS.
Florida and Georgia are both coming off bye weeks after suffering a conference loss their last time out. The Gators lost 36-17 at Missouri. The Bulldogs fell to Vanderbilt 31-27 in Nashville. Despite each team’s record and the fact that they are both unranked, there will still be a lot on the line in Jacksonville as the winner will still be alive in the SEC East race and the loser will be eliminated from contention.
Georgia leads the all-time series between the schools 48-40-2, but Florida has dominated in recent history. Since 1990, Florida is 18-5 against Georgia.
As always, there should be a tremendous atmosphere for one of college football’s greatest rivalries. Here are a few things to keep an eye on during the “World’s Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party.”
Injuries on both sides
Both Florida and Georgia have been decimated by injuries this season, which is a big reason each team enters this weekend at just 4-3. Florida will be without eight starters for the game with the addition of starting left tackle D.J. Humphries to the injury report this week. Georgia has had their fair share of injuries as well but will receive a boost with the return of star running back Todd Gurley. Whichever team can best deal with its injury situation should have the upper hand in this matchup.
Gators new-look offensive line
As stated above, Florida will be without starting left tackle D.J. Humphries. It was announced Wednesday that Humphries would be out at least two-to-four weeks with a sprained MCL. Changes were likely coming for Florida’s offensive line anyway, but the injury to Humphries, arguably the Gators best tackle, has forced their hand. His replacement in the lineup will be Tyler Moore, who will switch from his usual spot at right tackle. Stepping in at right tackle will be junior college transfer Trenton Brown, who is massive at 6-foot-8, 361 pounds, but like Moore, is a little slow.
No matter what the changes were, the Gators offensive line has got to improve from its last time out when it gave up six sacks against Missouri. Otherwise, it could be a field day for Georgia’s Ray Drew and Leonard Floyd, who have combined for nine of the Bulldogs 19 sacks on the season.
Must-win for Muschamp?
With his team off to a rough start, including two straight conference losses, rumors have started to surface that head coach Will Muschamp may be on the hot seat. Making things tougher could be the fact that the third-year head coach will be looking to avoid a 0-3 record against the Bulldogs as the head coach of the Florida Gators football team. Even Ron Zook managed to go 2-1 against the hated Dogs. A win in a big-time rivalry game like Georgia would certainly help put some of those rumors to rest. However, a third straight loss to the Bulldogs would only add more fuel to the fire.
Florida 17, Georgia 24