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Know Your Enemy: Florida Gators

With the Fire of a Thousand Suns, Fueled by Another Thousand Suns.

NCAA Football: Georgia vs Florida
Good Guys to the Left, Bad Guys to the Right.
Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Swamp Lizards. Beach Bums. Jorts. SEC East. History. Math. Stephen Orr Spurrier. Run Lindsay Run. Half A Hundred. Corrine Brown Celebration Penalty. 50-43-2

Who are they? The Devil’s Spawn Florida Gators.

Head Coach: James McElwain

When & Where? 3:30pm, October 28th, Everbank Field, Jacksonville, Florida.

Famous Alumni: Erin Andrews, Faye Dunaway, Joe Scarborough, Emmitt Smith, Marco Rubio

What conference are they affiliated with? The Southeastern Conference (9-4, 6-2 in 2016 SEC East Champions).

Fast Fact: Florida sucks with Thunderous Mountains of Suckitude

This is the World’s Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party. Make no mistake, this is about pride and history. It is good vs. evil, right vs. wrong, sweet tea vs. unfinished tea, Coke vs. Pepsi.

There is nothing good in the Gainesville 347.7 miles to the south and nothing evil in our own Classic City. The pride of Georgia is on the line. It is our way of life against theirs. The very civilization we hold near and dear to our own hearts is on the line. God dear reader is a Bulldog.

In the words of our own Vineyarddawg, “Let's get one thing straight: I hate Florida. It's not just a simple dislike, a harmonious discord, or even a deep, latent enmity. I hate Florida with the fire of a thousand suns being fueled by the fire of an additional thousand suns. In a world where my choices were to cheer for Florida or go blind, I'd start learning Braille.”

The last three years have been difficult ones for the Bulldog Nation in Jacksonville. But the Vineyarddawg prophecy from 2012 said, “though we walk through the valley of the shadow of the scaly and orange, we shall fear no evil. We shall, instead, allow our hatred and enmity to continue to fester for another year. After which time, we will again wage war upon the Great Satan. And maybe next year we might be able to beat the bastards.”

It is our time. It is our year. We have walked through the valley for three long years. It is nearly time to once again wage war upon the Great Satan & his Swamp Lizards and this time, WE. SHALL. BE VICTORIOUS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Oh, you wanted to know about the game? Very well then. This will be Head Coach McElwain’s third season in the swamp. It’s also OC Doug Nussmeier’s third year. DC Geoff Collins has left the team to take the Head Coach job at Temple and they have promoted Randy Shannon to DC with Chris Rumph as his Co-DC. Shannon has been in the DC slot before at Miami, so he’s not exactly new to the job.

On Defense, the Gators have lost nearly all, 8 of 11, starters and the Coordinator. Among the departures were 3 from the Secondary that went off to play on Sundays. In addition, Florida had hoped to have Senior Safety Marcell Harris. He is out for the season with a torn Achilles leaving few options for Senior Leadership on Defense. Since last year’s team relied heavily on the Defense to win, this is good news.

On Offense, they return nearly everyone, including WR Antonio Callaway and TB Jordan Scarlett. Last year Callaway had 54 receptions for 721 yards, an average of 13.4. Callaway’s longest last year was 78 yards. His Rushing stats add another 5 carries for 32 yards and 1 touchdown. Against us last year he had 4 receptions for 42 yards, including one 21 yard run and 1 carry for 4 yards and a touchdown. He may be the most dangerous player in Florida’s Offense and the person our defense must stop.

If Callaway’s the most dangerous receiver, Scarlett is his rushing equivalent. He carried the rock 179 times for 889 yards averaging 5 yards per carry with a long run of 46 and 6 rushing touchdowns. He also had 4 receptions for a total of 23 yards last year. Callaway and Scarlett are the 1-2 punch that may keep the question mark at QB from hurting the Gators chances very much.

As late as Saturday, news in Florida is still reporting the starting QB slot is up for grabs in Gainesville. Luke Del Rio, Feleipe Franks and Malik Zaire are all still in contention. McElwain says the race is really close.

Yes, they have 7 players suspended, but this is Florida, so they are suspended only for the opening game vs. Michigan. I have no doubt, barring injury, all 7 will be playing in Jacksonville. By the time our game rolls around, they will have long since settled the QB race and be firing on all cylinders. That’s just the way things are. Vegas has the Dawgs favored to win, but only slightly. Our Football Power Index is at 15.7, theirs is at 14.7. Everything I find says Georgia but only by 1-3 points. This early in the year there are too many variables for most people to make a reasonable or realistic projection. Neutral field? Yep. Rivalry Game? Yep. Vegas doesn’t quite know what to do.

Podunkdawg’s prediction: Georgia Bulldogs Eleventy Billion, Jort-Wearing, Rotten Teeth Swamp Lizards 0.*

Until next time...

GO Dawgs!

*I never make any public predictions that involve anything less than a Georgia Bulldog victory, now please pass me the kool-aid, I’ve already got my clear liquors & fruit.