Get fired up, Gator Nation!
No sense in wallowing in ambivalence over last week’s game. It was horrible to watch. We just have to believe that this week will be a totally new look to the Gators. We’re heading to College Station to play the Texas A&M Aggies in their first SEC game EVER! In past years, this would be nothing different than traveling to Vandy or Kentucky, but a what a difference a year makes….or actually doesn’t. Texas A&M is going to attempt to be the exact opposite of what the Gators have been the last two years…a wide open offense. Let’s talk some football…
How do you scout a team that has a new head coach, a new offensive and defensive coordinator and a QB that hasn’t played one college snap at the position? Well, you don’t. I know we’ve watched films from Head Coach Kevin Sumlim’s teams at Houston—where Case Keenum put up astronomical passing numbers. We’ve been watching every other piece of footage from the rest of the coaching staffs’ history at their respective schools to prepare for a team that did not play last week due to Hurricane Isaac. The only thing we can really expect of a team that went 7-5 last year is something at least better than that. Their defense gave up LOTS of points, so the new defensive coordinator will have a challenge on his hands, particularly since they didn’t get their warm up game in before ours. Their QB, Johnny Manziel, has never taken a college snap. Hasn’t even seen the field during a college game. I’m going to say that this probably works in our favor, but let’s not get ahead of ourselves. Kevin Sumlim didn’t put up arcade level passing numbers for no good reason on his Houston teams. I would suspect that young Johnny can toss the ball around. Our secondary will definitely need to show up this week. There is reason for Texas A&M to feel good about this game. They are at home. We are away from our fan base at college game in Texas. We did not play inspiring last week and our passing game was not as expected. Oh, well, we’re gonna beat them anyway.
I’m just chalking up last week to life’s little surreal moments and moving on this season. Our defense will demonstrate this weekend why it was highly touted coming into the season. We didn’t blitz last week and only rushed four, which I assume was by choice. If our front four get good pressure on the QB, our secondary should have a field day picking off some passes—-something I think we really all need to see. Mike Gillislee showed us the future for the season. I don’t know if he will get 24 touches this weekend, but I think 18-20 is doable. We will just have to see what he can make of it. I have to admit that it would be nice if we had someone getting 100+ yards each week. Jeff Driskel gets the nod at QB, but my gut tells me it’s only because he is mobile. Our offensive line really needs to exert its presence this week and push around what should be a small Texas A&M defense. I don’t like the new kickoff rule, but am still counting on Andre Debose breaking a kickoff for the distance. Now that he is returning punts maybe we will see the same on punt returns. I think we all need to see something new this weekend, Gator Nation. We’ve been waiting for this. It’s unrealistic to expect it to harken back to our National Championship teams, but I think we deserve more than the last two years. Our history is rocky in Texas (1-7-2…..2 ties, really???) and we’re only 1-1 against the Aggies, but an SEC reckoning is heading towards College Station. Florida 38 Texas A&M 24. ESPN Gameday is visiting with kickoff at 3:30pm EST, 12:30pm PST and some ungodly hour here in Kuwait. Before the season is out, I plan to make it to my local Gator Club, but I’m hoping you are at yours because Victory is best served with Gators! ‘Nuff said.
- Tickets for Texas A&M’s SEC Debut in High Demand (seatgeek.com)
- Florida vs. Texas A&M: Latest Spread Info, BCS Impact and Predictions (bleacherreport.com)
- Aggie Nation Annexation Proclaimed on Gainesville Billboard (kbtx.com)
- Florida Football: 5 Keys to the Game vs. Texas A&M (bleacherreport.com)
- Texas A&M Football: Matchups to Watch When the Aggies Face the Florida Gators (bleacherreport.com)