Andreu’s Blog: Gators will get it done

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Kentucky quarterback Stephen Johnson hands off to running back Benny Snell Jr. during the second half last Saturday in Columbia, S.C. Kentucky defeated South Carolina 23-13. (AP Photo/Sean Rayford)

Picking Kentucky over Florida has been a popular pick around the country. And, when you think about it, it does make sense.

The Wildcats are 3-0, coming off a big road win at South Carolina and will be jacked (along with their fans) to end the Gators’ 30-game winning streak in the series. And the UK roster is deeper and more talented than it’s been in perhaps decades.

On the other side, of course, the Gators are struggling on offense, have some apparent holes on defense (poor tackling, in particular) and are stepping into a hostile and frenzied environment with a whole bunch of young players, including possibly two true freshmen starting at cornerback.

Take Kentucky. It’s a smart pick. And by no means an upset.

But, I’m just not ready to go there.

Here’s the main reason why: The Wildcats are not nearly as good as everyone seems to think they are. They struggled against Southern Miss. They struggled against Eastern Kentucky. Their win at USC looks good, but upon closer examination,is not that good. The Gamecocks were getting some hype going into that game after beating Missouri 31-13. But after seeing what Purdue did to Missouri last week, that USC win was unimpressive. Which makes UK’s win over USC less impressive. Does that make sense? Does to me.

Here’s another reason: The offense will continue to grow with Feleipe Franks and the talented young playmakers like Kadarius Toney and Malik Davis. Franks and the offense have a chance to steadily improve over the course of the season. The next step is Saturday night. On defense, the Gators have great overall speed and will successfully contain dual-threat quarterback Stephen Johnson, which will hamstring the UK offense.

So, there it is. I’m not going with the popular pick on this one.

Prediction: Florida 16, Kentucky 14.

9 COMMENTS

  1. Agree, Florida wins, but take the over on the point total. Both the Florida defense and offense step up big in this one. The seven-year dream (or nightmare, depending on one’s perspective) continues (or does not if you are living an offensive nightmare still). Go Gators.

  2. From Robbie’s lips to Gods ears. The last eight years have been a nightmare. A streak of incomprehensible offensive incompetence. Impossible to comfortably watch the Gators play. Maybe this will be the turnaround game. Mayyyyyybeeeee.

  3. Amazing how one huge, spectacular play to win a rivalry game can create a basic optimistic outlook on the next game. The coaches and players are more realistic than us fans because this is their day to day real world but despite that I am sure there is a thought in the back of their minds that good things are going to happen. This is why I am also picking the Gators to extend the streak and of course their is also the young talent to pull it off. Go Gators!

  4. The Wildcats are just that… Kentucky! If it were their basketball team, well…
    But it’s a ROAD GAME, and a ROAD WIN in the S.E.C. is always good!
    One game at a time, and -hopefully- the ‘O’ starts firing on all 8 cylinders and then look out!
    So keep it simple, and get Franks some ”velcro” for that manual of play-calls strapped to his arm.
    It looks like it’s about to flap off at times! But serious talk now, the Kentucky Wildcats, still after 30 years, taste like chicken! GO GATORS!

  5. Their run defense may be pretty good but their pass defense is terrible. Franks will make a mistake here and there as he continues to develop but I think the staff trusts him a little more this week and if they find a way to get Kadarious & Malek 15+ touches between them I don’t think it will be that close …UF 31-20

  6. I’m still hoping for the same storyline from two years ago when UF beat UT with a big end-of-the-game play, and then backed it up with a solid looks-like-everyone-get-it offensive performance again Ole Miss. If it does, then hopefully it inspires the defense to improve on the tackling….they’re going to need it today with UK’s quarterback. Looking forward to seeing what transpires. Go Gators!!!!

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