Andreu’s Analysis: Defining moment is here for Gators

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Florida running back Lamical Perine (2), wide receiver Rick Wells (83) and quarterback Kyle Trask (11) at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium. [Matt Pendleton/Correspondent]

The Gators — and the rest of college football — will find out Saturday the true identity of this Florida team. No. 7 Auburn will reveal it.

 Are the Gators a better team than they’ve shown through the first five games? Or is this just who they are — a team that’s a little above average? Being around the players this week, they seem confident they are going to show the football world they are better, much better, than ESPN’s Kirk Herbstreit and their other many critics are giving them credit for.

 The Gators are going to be jacked, for sure. And so will The Swamp. But emotion can carry you only so far. Ultimately, it comes down to who is the better team physically. And whose coaching staff comes up with a better game plan on both sides of the ball.

 The biggest concern for the Gators is the perceived massive mismatch in favor of Auburn’s powerful (and fast) defensive line over the struggling Florida offensive line, which seems to be regressing over the course of the season after that poor performance against Towson last Saturday.

 Dan Mullen and the offensive coaches are going to have to coach around this big problem area, just like they successfully did when facing a very similar situation against Mississippi State last season. 

 Defensively, the Gators have to do a much better job on third down. Their inability to get opposing offenses off the field has drastically cut into the number of plays Mullen’s offense is getting. 

 This is going to be a physical, low-scoring game. At least that’s what the Gators hope it is. I don’t seen this UF offense, with the mismatch up front, scoring many points against this powerful Auburn defense.

 I just have a feeling Auburn’s offense is going to get off to a quick start — a touchdown on the game’s first possession — and the Tigers will run with it from there, controlling the tempo of the game and eventually silencing The Swamp.

 Prediction: Auburn 28, Florida 13.

12 COMMENTS

  1. The Oline has not regressed. Did you look at that Miami game? That was about as bad as it has been and that was the first game of the year. I’m not saying they have improved tremendously but saying they regressed it absolutely not true. This UF team is getting zero respect…it’s time to shut some people up.

  2. Now that is creepy. Same “feeling” I’ve got about this one. Unless the O line and the D on third downs have been incorporating Sun Tzu tactics about making your enemies think you’re week when you’re actually strong, I don’t see my beloved Gators being able to handle a pro level D line, and I also have the same vision of a score on Auburns first snap. I think the Swamp monsters will get a wake up call on this one, but would LOVE to have you all telling me how wrong and boneheaded I was come 7:00 PM tomorrow night. Auburn 31, Gators 9.

  3. From the beginning of this season, I’ve believed this is going to be a low scoring game because both defenses are superior to both offenses. If there aren’t a bunch of turnovers, this game may come down to field goals and the Gators have the better FG kicker. I say Gators win, 16 to 13.

  4. I am disappointed in Robbie’s commentary – such lack of faith. The Gators have stepped it up in big games many times before, and the is the biggest game in recent history for the Gators. I believe the O-line will do just enough to allow our offense to stay in the game. Remember that Auburn’s offense has not faced a defense as good as ours (so far this year), so our defense will be a counter-balance to Auburn’s. I figure Auburn will try to run the ball right at our defense, so we need to be prepared for that. Stuff a few running plays and make Nix pass the ball. Our D-backs will get a few picks today, helping to level the playing field. Don’t be surprised to see passes to our running backs to help offset the Auburn D-line. GO GATORS – BEAT AUBURN!!!

  5. How do ppl know the a defense is so superior, just because they beat a couple of ranked teams; 1 from the pac and then t.am (learning the ropes) with a poor qb. Miami’s d was supposed to be great up front and o was better than the gators but they still lost. Can’t really tell which team is better until u play each other. Too many experts on here that know nothing, along with dooley and robbie.