Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy Halloween

I beieve Florida will win this weekend. There are many who do not, including some folks I have a lot of respect for. My reasoning is as follows:

1. Last year UGA had a bye week to get ready. This year they had LSU on the road. While they didn't get as beaten up as I thought they might, that's still an enormous difference. UF had a tight game with Kentucky on the road last year, and a walkover against them at home this year. Advantage: UF

2. Since last season, Georgia has added one tremendously impressive player in freshman AJ Green. He's as good as any wide receiver I have seen come into college. They have gotten some improvement out of their QB, even if Stafford throws more "impressive looking" 60 yard incompletions than any guy ever. UF has a healthier Tebow than last year by far. Knowshown's still great. With Demps, Rainey and possibly even Emmanuel Moody for some power running they have a ground game which doesn't have to depend on Percy Harvin all the time. That in turn frees up Harvin to spend more time attacking at wide receiver. Aaron Hernandez has merged as a force in the offense, and the OL is better than it was last year while UGA's has had to mix and match with injuries but is still playing well. Overall, I see much more reason to believe UF has improved substantially than I do UGA.

3. Both sides have been preparing for this one for a long time. I've seen what happens when Urban Meyer motivates his guys specifically for a game - the results are almost always positive. If UGA really is doing a "code red" and wearing all red unis, that will be quite lame as a motivational gimmick - the blackout versus Bama sure turned out well, for example. I fully expect UF to be intense for this one, and if they are they normally win.

Georgia has underwhelmed me all year long. They didn't put away Tennessee, they could easily have lost the game I saw them play in person against South Carolina, and they were destroyed by Bama. Maybe I'll be wrong, but I expect Florida to leave Jacksonville in control of the SEC East.

For FSU this weekend, no Corey Surrency as wide receiver due to a suspension. That won't help, but if they don't have Preston Parker either due to injury they're in trouble. Georgia Tech let a game get away they shouldn't have last week - I think they beat the Noles.

FSU might have bigger concerns right now than any given game, as the NCAA continues to send signs they're looking to get tough again on violations. FSU football and Indiana basketball are the two pinatas waiting for the Infractions Committee to take a big swing.

I hate the fact that I can't be at UF-UGA. These kind of games are why I got into the business, but the reality is I have to cover Tennessee at South Carolina. There are reasons for intrigue on this one, as it gives Spurrier a chance to finish off Phillip Fulmer's career. If you're watching it in the parking lot after the Gator game, perhaps you can amuse yourself by playing a little Fulmer Bingo. Have a great weekend and I'll see you back here Monday.

1 comment:

Matt said...

Wow, I made that "code red" comment because I thought it was such an absurd idea that it would never actually happen. I didn't know that it was something they had really talked about and considered... Truly pathetic.