South Carolina prediction time


I’m having a strange feeling about this game. I smell an upset, I really do.

South Carolina has not been all that well offensively, but quarterback Stephen Garcia has improved dramatically. He’s got some talented young receivers who are making plays, and now, Steve Spurrier is going back to calling plays this week. If Spurrier opens things up a little and Garcia and those receivers perform at a high level, the Florida defense is going to have its hands full. If South Carolina scores early, especially a touchdown, this game could get really scary for the Gators.

The way the Florida offense is playing, the Gators are going to have trouble putting up a lot of points against a very good, very fast and athletic South Carolina defense. If Tim Tebow doesn’t get better protection, this could turn into a real meltdown game for the offense. Something tells me the Gators will be playing from behind at some point in this game. How they react to that will be huge.

One area where Florida appears to have a considerable edge is in special teams. UF’s are excellent; USC’s are very average at best (and very poor in kickoff coverage). If the Gators are a big winner in the battle for field position, it will take the pressure off of both the offense and the defense. And a relaxed Florida has been a more efficient Florida throughout the season.

If the Gators get past this game, it looks like they’ll be 12-0 heading into the SEC title game. UF will be a pretty heavy favorite against Florida International and Florida State, which will be without quarterback Christian Ponder. But now is not the time to look ahead. The Gators need to stay focused on this game and come out of it with a victory.

I’m sensing the upset. I can feel it, and I’m close to pulling the trigger on it. But I can’t. This Florida team will find a way to slug out another victory.

Prediction: Florida 17, South Carolina 16


  1. Robbie, this is what I’m feeling: The SEC’s #2 Quarterback will have some fun and so will the Nation’s #1 defense. The Special Forces will also strike with great power and precision. Get ready to see some fireworks! Gators 45, GameCocks 10. Go Gators, Beat Everybody!

  2. Robbie – we’re going to the game with every bit of gator gear, posters and positive prayer we can muster. No one’s going to call the Gator Nation apathetic, lethargic on my family’s watch!

    Every year I get nervous about this game. I’m hoping that this week’s trash talk about the offense will fuel the Gators and this will be a breakout game for Tebow and his receivers. The fear is that Addazio really doesn’t know what to do except make Tebow wait forever for a call and then dive for 3 yards. The offense appears fearful instead of fearless. I live near Columbia, SC and I can tell you that they have nothing to lose and they will play like maniacs. Spurrier will throw out 1 trick play; if it works, he’ll do it again. Count on it.

    We’re gonna win – Florida 28 – Gamecocks 17

  3. We have better athletes than SC..Much better…It will come down to coaching and,of course, the breaks and turnovers. If the coaches come up with a good game plan,(I know it’s been tough for them to do) then it’s an easy Gator victory. If we become “dive play U” and show no imagination in our offense then we will have to depend on the defense and special teams to win the game. What else is new.

  4. Robbie you are a great writer. Not sure if you played, though. I played and coached. One thing I learned was that with Senior/experienced teams, they turn it on when they need to. Like Georgia this year. Our leaders will have the team ready.

    But, hey, you are a great writer and generated a bunch of comments!

  5. The gator offence showed signs in the georgia game but came out flat in the vandy game. There has been more flat than good. Not sure who shows up this week. Every defensive coordinator has our number. I would think that tebow could roll out and maybe we could use the option pitch on a few 3rd downs. I just hope we can hang tough. Our defence will have a hard time with the pass. But we still win! Go Gators!

  6. I think USCe is feeling the attrtion caused by playing 10 games. They don’t have the depth the Gators do. They apparently don’t have much of a running game either. That implies that Garcia might spend most of the afternoon running for his life. Gators 24, Gamecocks 10.

  7. Did you see any of South Carolina’s last two games? Have you looked at their injury reports? Are you not aware of SC’s recent tendency to implode in the second half of the season under SOS? And frankly SC tends to make inexplicably dumb plays in big games.
    This is a bad matchup for SC. They have to play an undersized sophmore middle linebacker and they are woefully thin at DT. I guessing UF is smart enough to run at this weakness because it plays to UF’s strength. Pass protection is less an issue when you don’t have to pass much.
    SC’c OLine play has deteriorated after a promising start to the season – Garcia will be lucky to finish this game.
    UF may not win big, but won’t be challenged in getting the win.

  8. Bottom Line: I’ve been watchin’ the Gators for 20+ years and I’ve never seen anything like this year’s team…they look bad at times (because we are conditioned to expect a certain level of play),but they win. The problem that everyone has with this style of play is that eventually a team that keeps playing like this is going to lose historically speaking. This team finds a way to win; Teboism is not just a faith, but a state of being…and without it this team doesn’t make it past Arkansas. Next year, changes will have to be made. Also, Addazio is somewhat lazy in his play calling because he is new to all of this, he will have to be more creative next year. I cant wait!! Have faith Robbie, your sense of smell is cluttered from all those hot dogs you been stuffin’ down your gullet. If the game gets close, Spurrier will get greedy and do something stupid like he used to do at Florida

  9. I have to agree. The upset is possible, maybe more than possible but, my personal take on disaster is either Alabama or the title game. Repeating is one of the hardest things in sports. Rather than acknowledge that and take the pressure off, the repeat was put up as the expectation, anything less was failure; bad move, harder on everyone, makes the very difficult almost impossible.

    The kindest thing might be to just put the gators out of their misery. The ol’ ball coach could use some mo’ right about now. There is probably nothing he would love more than to regain the respect of the gator fans. No, not just appreciation, fear.

  10. There doesn’t seem to be much buzz about it, which can translate to us coming out without much energy. However, the team had been pretty good about staying focused this year. As Robbie mentioned, this is our last serious test until Alabama, so let’s hope the guys are ready to buckle down one more time.

  11. I know you can’t look too much into things in the SEC but South Carolina has been playing bad defense in the second half of the season. They gave up a ton of points to GA, Ark, and even Kentucky. They also turn the ball over alot and play poorly on special teams. This has the making of a big blowout unless the ‘cocks play miles over their heads or, more likely, we keep them in the game with botched plays and turnovers. Fla. 31 S.C.10

  12. We have a chapionship team that will rise to the occasion. That’s what makes this team special and is what Meyer means when he says how much he loves this team. Spurrier is finished being that “killa” coach. He his the S.E.C. At the right time when he came to UF and that made is reputation. Everyone has adjusted to his offense and in some cases surpassed it. We have the better coaching staff and players. Players who know how to play when it’s time to get it. So, chill out, my Gator brethren! We will leave USC with their hearts in our hands. As for the championship games – don’t buy into that Bama love fest. The teams are close in talent and coaching; however, we have the intangibles. Our guys have been there and beyond. We will win out! Have confidence in those Gators and let our coaches do their thing!

  13. Hey you “win at any cost Florida fans”…not to worry… remember, the SEC officials will be wearing their Tebow panties and make sure the Gators win it. And, enjoy your moment…after this year it will be just like the Gator basketball team…second tier.

  14. Florida needs a smashmouth option in offense. Look what Billy Latsko did for the Florida offense when they finally stopped playing him at linebacker and put him at fullback. Look what James Jones did when he went from tight end to tailback.
    Tim’s been great up the middle but who replaces his 240 pound frame next year?! Why not try some of the 240 pound fullbacks as tailbacks?! Or put a defensive end in for some plays at tailback. I’m sure many of them played both sides of the ball in high school!! That would take a while for some teams to counter this unexpected twist!

  15. I am also nervous about SC because I know Steve, since his student days at UF and he plays to win with the bag of tricks he carries… But we have the better players and determination, so we will have one more win in our list… GO GATORS, GO!

  16. Jeblaze02,

    You cpontinue your wishful thinking! You must be one of Lame Sniffin’s boys. We have a lot of talent in the pantry and you people who assume Brantley will fail taking over the offense are clueless. Wait til u see the arm and overall talent he will bring to the table. Your daddy Kiffin will have to find another excuse next year. Moral victories only go so far! We will continue to be the dynasty you only dream of being. So, we will enjoy our last games with Tebow and celebrate the most successful team of the decade! Go play with your BB gun at your closest convenience store!

  17. R. i think yout analysis was spot on. You knew the HBC would have his team ready to play.Garcia has made tremendous strides this year. Florida’s defense bailed the team out again. I wish the coaches would take more advantage of the true option, when they can run with Heenandez on the inside pitch, Tebow keep, or the pitch to Demps. This one play I believe could pick up four to six yards per play. BTY – Cooper neeeds to lay out just a little bit to catch two more TD passes.