On paper, the Gators appear to be unbeatable. They return every starter from a defense a season ago that absolutely dominated down the stretch and held an explosive Oklahoma Sooner offense to a mere 14 points. Brandon Spikes was a sure 1st rounder in this past NFL draft, but elected to stay his senior season to lead this defense in establishing it's place in history.
The only chink I see in Florida's armor is the offense. They're starting three new offensive linemen from a year ago and the wide receivers are extremely talented, but untested. The key to a successful offense starts with the monsters up front. The Pouncey twins will help anchor and unify this line. Gilbert has much experience, but is being phased out due to how well Carl Johnson's playing as well as the emergence of sophomore left tackle Matt Patchan, who a season ago was playing defensive tackle for the Gators. This unit is big, strong, and very athletic. Look for them to be a cohesive unit come Kentucky.
Am I forgetting something, or rather, someone? The reason this team seems to aggravate the college football world?
Tim Tebow is a born winner with limitless intangibles. He has proven his critics wrong over and again. This young signal caller has only one thing left to prove, a perfect season. And he has his eyes set on it, which means I feel sorry for the rest of the SEC and Florida's opponents.
Florida will blaze through their 1st two games of the season giving back-up and future starter John Brantley some much needed reps. Then the fun begins.
Lane Kiffin and the Tennessee Volunteers enter the Swamp with a gigantic target on their backs due to Kiffin's brilliant mouthing. Clearly, this young coach has never seen what Tebow does to smack talkers. Don't be surprised if you see the Vols do well early and often throughout this game. After all, it is a major SEC rivalry game and Tennessee's defense is no slouch. They will be physical and ready to play. It's their offense that Florida will absolutely punish. I know Gator fans want a 60 point blow out, but this game will be much closer than the critics think. 1st three quarters will be a war, but Timmy and company take over in the 4th. Gators by 13.
Florida rolls over Kentucky on their way to Baton Rouge where this team, and pretty much the entire SEC, struggle. If there's one game I had to predict would be an L for the Gators, it'd be this one. LSU is very well coached and the crowd will give them all the help they need. By this point in the season, LSU's young QB, Jordan Jefferson, will either be running on all cylinders or will cause Les Miles to continue the revolving door from under center. For the Tiger's sake, they better hope it's the former. The Gators won't care. Their defense will roll and by this point in the season the offense will be clicking. Expect UF to win big in the Big Easy.
Arkansas is an intriguing match-up for the Gators. Bobby Petrino isn't without talent and is a very good coach. Why aren't more people talking about this game? I don't think Urban Meyer would allow his Gators to sleep on this one, but I have a funny feeling this game will turn out better than the Vegas odds will give it credit. UF wins, but Petrino will have them ready.
The Gators stomp through Mississippi State and their old offensive coordinator on their way to Jacksonville for the Earth's Biggest Open-Air Adult Beverage Consumption Fiesta (apparently, the SEC no longer wants people calling it the other way, but who're they kidding?). Don't kid yourself, Gator fans, this is a home game and although fate is on Georgia's side (they've beaten UF the season after UF wins a National Title both times) I don't see this game being close. Georgia's defense will keep them in it early, but you can't keep a defense on the field the whole game. Moreno and Stafford will be sorely missed. Richt is a good coach, but Meyer's still thinking of sticking it to him for the fiasco a couple of season's ago.
Vandy, @South Carolina, and Florida International will all be a breeze and will give Florida's back-ups reps for the upcoming future.
The hated Florida State Seminoles come into town to finish off the regular season. The Gators have beaten FSU five in a row and have a mental edge over the boys from Tallahassee. Expect the 'Noles to come off firing. Barring injury, they have too much talent to lay down. There's no way Tim Tebow loses his last game in Gainesville. Tebow will have the game of his career, giving the 200,000 fans (yes, somehow that many will get into Ben Hill to see Timmy's final game there) a show to put him down in history. Those tickets will sell for millions on Ebay and Gator fans will rejoice. UF by 20.
My upset prediction: This UF schedule is weak. They'll be favored in every game by 20 or more.
My team to potentially upset the Gators: LSU has the best shot over anyone.
Player to watch for: Junior Defensive End, Carlos Dunlap. This kid is a freak. Think Houston Texans' Mario Williams, but quicker.
Player who'll shock you: Freshman Linebacker, Jelani Jenkins. This young man can flat out fly, is very intelligent, and isn't afraid of contact. Don't be surprised if he's starting by years end.
Charleston Southern- W
@Louisiana State- W
@Mississippi State- W
@South Carolina- W
Florida International- W
Florida State- W
Tebow's dream comes true and this squad goes down as one of the best to play college football. They'll contend for the SEC and National Titles.
I'll do a quick one on Meeeeeeeechigan for my buddy Sean...