Earlier in the week, this seemed like any other game week around the Florida football team. That has changed here in the last few days. It has started to feel a lot different, and a little sad. The reality has started to sink in for everybody that Urban Meyer’s farewell is now at hand. He’s down to his last game. Meyer didn’t say so at his news conference Friday, but I think it’s really starting to hit him, too.
This is going to be a very emotional game for the Gators and their fans (and certainly for Meyer and his family). The players have vowed to win this game for a coach they admire and love. I know, they vowed to play their hearts out in the South Carolina and Florida State games, too, and they lost both those. But I have a feeling this one is going to be different.
I think the Gators are going to reach an emotional peak that they have not been at for quite a while – at least not this season. And Meyer and his staff have had almost a month to straighten things out on offense and come up with a plan that will be functional against Penn State. The defense should be fine against a Penn State offense that is fairly basic and lacks the overall speed the Gators have faced all season in the SEC.
These two teams are very evenly matched. They’ve both lost five games and have had to deal with injuries and other distractions. In a game like this, you look for the team with the edge – and that’s Florida. The Gators have a huge emotional edge over the Nittany Lions.
The Gators, especially these seniors who are so close to Meyer, are playing for something that almost feels like a championship. They’re playing to send Urban Meyer out the right way – with a victory in his final game.
Prediction: Florida 28, Penn State 10.