1) Can Will Muschamp realistically keep his job at this point? What would be required for him to do so?
Andy: I think Florida winning out — really, truly, winning out — would save Muschamp's job. I think anything less than that, especially because a loss to Georgia concedes the East and a loss to FSU will be immensely painful, means the ax falls on him.
So he can, yes, keep his job. I just don't think he will.
2) Coach Muschamp announced last week that Treon Harris would be starting on Saturday. How did Jeff Driskel get to this point as a senior? What went wrong along the way for the guy who some thought was the top QB in America for the class of 2011?
Andy: Florida has had three offensive coordinators, three very different offenses, three offensive line coaches, and four wide receivers coaches (two of whom had been or basically were graduate assistants) during Driskel's four years at Florida. And that's just the systemic instability on offense: Driskel's basically had 1.5 good receivers to throw to in any given one of his three years as a starter, with the 2013 versions of Trey Burton, Quinton Dunbar, and Solomon Patton qualifying as Florida's best receiving corps in his time, and the line has generally been bad around him, and ... so, yeah, things haven't ever been conducive to his success.
But Driskel — a redshirt junior, by the way, and not a senior (Editor's note: Geez, leading Will Muschamp's Gators really ages a guy...) — has made things hard on himself, too, with a lack of accuracy and an uncanny knack for untimely turnovers and a development that has been marked by the repetition of one step forward, two steps back, and a shell fired into the foot for good measure. He played awful, awful football for Florida in October, spraying footballs to no one in particular or coughing them up to defenders while making maybe three or four very good plays in total, and he deserves this benching richly.
And he still has all the physical tools — speed and good instincts as a runner, and a top-shelf arm — to be successful as a quarterback. The problem with Driskel is that those tools in the hands of the wrong craftsman, or in the wrong workshop, do more harm than good.
3) Sometimes in life it's important to look for positives. In that regard, name one Gator who has been a pleasant surprise so far in 2014.
Andy: I'll say this for Brandon Powell, a guy I think might be a solutions to Florida's paucity of playmakers problem: He's too young to know what he doesn't know. He's small, and skinny, and looks more like the high school player who tore up Broward County last year than a college athlete, but Powell's also quick and instinctive, and unafraid to make the mistakes that some of Florida's players have grown to fear because of how often they've happened. If Florida can get Powell in space and let him do things, I think the things done will be good for Florida.
4) Obviously, Georgia won't have Todd Gurley tomorrow. And Florida has been excellent against the run this season, giving up only 3.08 yards per attempt and 117.7 per game (third in the SEC). What's behind that success? How worried about the Gator run defense should fans of the ground-hugging Bulldog offense be?
Andy: Florida's been very good up the middle against the run, stalemating interior linemen at the point of attack and forcing opponents to bounce runs outside. And Florida's linebackers, none likely to be confused for great players, generally flow well and play disciplined assignment football in run support. I don't think running up the middle on Florida is going to work for much of anyone; it didn't really even work for Alabama.
But Florida was gashed by both Alabama and LSU on the outside, and especially to its right side, and I assume Georgia saw enough of that on tape to run left all the time. I would, certainly, and I think even Mike Bobo will, so I wouldn't be too worried about getting the running game going, unless Georgia stubbornly tries to force Nick Chubb into holes that won't exist up front.
5) What's your score prediction?
Andy: If Treon Harris is brilliant, and Florida's defense is ferocious after two weeks to heal, Florida might win a 24-21 game. If Treon Harris is what I expect he'll be — good, but painfully green — Florida will lose, and probably by at least a touchdown. If Harris plays poorly, this will be a rout.
Special thanks to Andy for taking time during a busy (and not particularly invigorating) week to talk with us. Until later. . . .
Georgia takes on Florida at 3:30 on CBS television and on radio across the Georgia Bulldog Radio Network.