GatorCountry brings you a new podcast as we recap the Florida Gators 45-0 win over UT-Martin on Saturday night in the Swamp.
Andrew Spivey and Nick de la Torre break down how the Gators offense looked on Saturday and what they can improve on.
Andrew and Nick also talk about the injuries the Gators suffered on Saturday, plus we talk about all of the young guys who played on Saturday for Florida.
Andrew: What’s up, Gator Country? Your man, Andrew Spivey, here with Nicholas de la Torre. Nicholas, we knew we’d be talking about a win. 45-0. Shutout. Overall, I think the game was a good game for Florida. I thought there was some questions about the offensive line and all that. We’ll get into that a little bit more, but any time you can shut out a team and score 45 and go to 2-0 you’re good.
Nick: Yeah. Listen, the first quarter was kind of weird, because it’s 3-0. It went so quick. Almost looked up and was like, the first quarter’s over.
Andrew: It was boring.
Nick: The next three quarters took four and a half hours to finish, but the first quarter went quickly. You get out of the game with a 45-0 win. First shutout since 2017. That’s good. I think you continue to progress and continue to work. I guess the bad thing, and the thing we’ll need to address quickly are injuries, because you don’t get out of the game unscathed.
Nick: That’s probably what will be on everyone’s mind. When you play games like this, you go in just hoping, get the win, stay healthy. Florida went one for two, with both Kadarius Toney and CJ Henderson coming down with injuries. Neither was able to come back into the game.
Andrew: It happened pretty close together.
Nick: Kind of like a bang, bang. It’s almost like you stubbed a toe, and then when you reach down to grab your toe you bang your funny bone on the table. It was almost like boom, boom, two things happen real quick.
Andrew: Yeah. We’re taping this on Sunday, so we’re still waiting on some updates. Seems like Kadarius doesn’t have a break, has a sprain, a bone bruise. Is going to be out for some time, no question about that. Dan Mullen kind of hinted on Saturday that CJ Henderson probably had an ankle sprain. I’ll say this, Nick. I mean, we’ll get into this more, but I think you can afford to rest both of those guys for a couple weeks anyway. You got Kentucky this week. You shouldn’t really need CJ Henderson, and then after that you got Tennessee, and they’re atrocious. Then you got Townsend. You should have some time to rest those guys, as long as it isn’t the dreaded high ankle sprain.
Nick: The dreaded high ankle sprain that takes anywhere from six weeks to six years to get better. Yeah. Obviously, when he comes out on crutches and in a walking boot, people start freaking out. Listen, no matter what you do to your foot or your ankle in a game, training staff’s going to put you in a boot and on crutches. Get all the weight off your foot or ankle, whatever it is. I think that’s something to just monitor. Don’t freak out about it. Just monitor.
Andrew: I think people freaked out because they said, he’s in a boot. I don’t really see that necessarily. A lot of these guys, they sprain their ankle or have a little ankle issue in general they immediately put it in there just to help them out and get that pressure off of it and hope not to worsen the injury.
Nick: Yeah. Then the question becomes is it pain management? Can you make it worse? Do you play against Kentucky? Do you not play against Kentucky, and then you can definitely take a week off against Townsend? You got Tennessee coming up. I guess, the question is, and obviously it’s not a decision Dan Mullen makes, it’s a decision that the trainers make and then that CJ Henderson would have to make, and it’s how bad can you hurt it? Is it just a pain management thing? Can it get worse?
Nick: What game is it worth it to we need you here even if it could get worse? Is that Tennessee? Is that Kentucky? Is that wait till Auburn?
Andrew: I think it’s an Auburn. That’s me. We’ll see. Kadarius it seemed like a little bit more serious with him, obviously. I’ll say this with him, and that is if all reports that we’ve been told are true and that he avoided a break and all that, that’s a really good thing. I think with the emergence of Jacob Copeland I think you can be a little bit more patient with Kadarius coming back and make sure that when he comes back he comes back and is in the right state of mind and all that. The worst thing you want him to do is come back too soon and then have it get worse or something like that, because he’s going to get hit.
Nick: Yeah. There’s just some guys. Chris Rainey, I think I might have mentioned this before, but Chris Rainey was a guy, like every time Kadarius Toney gets hit, every time Chris Rainey would get hit you would just cringe. Some guys just look like their bodies are breaking when they get tackled.
Nick: To me, I mentioned that to Cassidy Hill. I was sitting next to her in the press box yesterday in the stadium. I’m like, man, these guys from UT Martin, I don’t know if they know how to get tackled, because every time Florida’s hitting them it sounds like someone’s dying. I can hear these damn pads up here.
Nick: I was like, they need to learn how to get hit. Maybe Kadarius needs to learn how to get hit. I don’t know how you practice that. You definitely don’t want to practice that, right?
Andrew: I mean, it looked like a helmet to the arm area was there. Listen, Kadarius is never going to be a guy who’s bulky or anything like that. He’s gained some good weight and that kind of stuff, but it’s always going to be one of those things where when he gets hit it’s a little bit of uh-oh, get up. That kind of thing. We’ll see. We talked about this a little bit last year a lot, but you really need Kadarius to be a guy who knows when to take a hit, that kind of stuff. You really need him to be able to know how to do all that. I thought he learned last year when to maybe get down, that kind of stuff. I don’t think that was the case on Saturday. I think that was just a simple case of the guy got a really good lick on him.
Nick: Yeah. That’s something that will happen. You see that all the time with guys breaking fingers or stuff like that. You get a hand sandwiched between a pad and a helmet, and stuff like that can happen. That’s just bad luck.
Andrew: Right. Exactly. Let’s go to the offensive line, Nick. I think if you were talking about, I don’t want to say a low spot, but if you were talking about something that struggled in this game, it’s the offensive line. Zero push, Nick. Listen, Florida was much bigger, much stronger, much more everything than UT Martin in this game. That should not have been a problem.
Nick: I mean, the pass blocking was always going to be fine.
Nick: We’ll get more into their defense, that 3-3-5. You’re only going to get a three-man pass rush on most plays. I mean, the pass rush was good against Miami as well. To me, it’s concerning. I think you and I both gave the offensive line a pass in Week 1, because we think that Miami has a good front seven. Mack Brown and UNC might think differently, but we think they have a good front seven. It’s the first game. You’re facing a talented front. Give you a pass for not opening holes, opening lanes.
But now we’re in Week 2. The damn week 0 thing is going to bother us all year isn’t it? We’re in Week 2. We’re in Week 2, and you’re still not creating running lanes. You’re still not getting a push off the ball. Against a team like UT Martin, like you said, that should not be an issue, and it was. So, when you start looking at the LSUs and the Georgias and the Auburns that you’re going to play, Dan Mullen offense is predicated on running the football and then being able to throw the ball off of having a good running game.
Florida’s going to have to find answers, whether it’s a different scheme or different players. I don’t think it’s the players. I’m not doubting John Hevesy. You just got to find a way to get a push in the running game, to create some lanes. They’re doing a lot of pulling and stuff like that. Maybe you can’t do stuff like that. Maybe you just don’t have the guys to be able to do that. It comes down to coaching and finding ways to get your players in the best possible position.
Andrew: Right. I don’t know if the game plan was not to run the ball a lot. Obviously, against a 3-3-5, you’re going to have open areas elsewhere, but even when they were trying to run the ball at a lot of times during the game there was multiple guys in the backfield before Perine or Malik or Damien or anyone was able to kind of get out there and get anything going. It just is a struggle, and it’s bad when you don’t push around UT Martin. UT Martin is a team that you should be able to line up and run draws and leads and everything else, counters, right at them, push them around, and you’re not. Guys getting beat on different inside moves, that kind of stuff. That where I at times was questioning.
I thought for the most part of the game that the pass rush was pretty good, or the pass protection was pretty good, but you’ve got to figure out a way to run the ball. If you can’t run the ball, it’s going to be a long, long year. I know some people will look at the rushing yards and say, they had 231 yards rushing. A lot of that was in garbage time.
Nick: Yeah. I mean, you’re not going to get help from your tight ends.
Andrew: No. That’s a problem. That’s a huge problem.
Nick: Well, we talked about that before the year. Is it good? No. I’m not trying to say it’s good. I’m just saying that’s not a surprise.
Andrew: Right. Go back to Kadarius getting hurt, and I’m not blaming this on anyone by any means whatsoever, but you’ve got to set the edge there. There was no edge being set. I don’t know if Florida has set an edge yet this year. That’s a problem.
Nick: No. That’s going to be an issue, obviously, beat a dead horse, when you start playing the better teams and more competitive games. Maybe it’s just simplifying the thing, simplifying the plan, like I said. Going back and watching a game, which I did this morning before all the NFL games start, there’s a lot of zone blocking, it looks like. Obviously, I don’t have the playbook, and I don’t know what the protections are called every play, but to me it looks like there’s a lot of zone blocking and guys not getting to their spots in that zone or not picking up a guy when he comes into their zone. Maybe you just need to simplify it and say, we’re playing a man blocking scheme. We’re not getting it done with zone blocking, so whoever lines up in front of you, punch him. Just try to simplify things, because you’re going to have to play better up front when it gets down into SEC play.
Andrew: Yeah. It’s just a situation where you got to find your best five. They’ve got to start working better together. I see your tackle positions getting beat a lot and that kind of stuff, and that just simply cannot happen. This is an offense that is predicated on being able to be balanced, and if you’re not able to be balanced out there, then, like you said, it could be a long year.
One thing that you and I wanted to talk about. Again, we’re not privileged to the play calling and the game plan and that kind of stuff, but you definitely knew that this game UT Martin was going to want to keep everything in front of them. They didn’t want anything to get over their heads, so there was going to be a lot of stand pass, screen pass, that kind of stuff, and that’s exactly what it was. Overall, Feleipe Franks did really well. He ended the first half with just one incompletion, and that was a questionable one, or that was a whatever one at the end of the half. So, he did his job. I know some people said you should have just took the top off every play. It wasn’t there. A lot of times it wasn’t there.
Nick: No. I think you’ll agree with me. Florida was clearly just trying to establish the run in that first. I mean, and they also didn’t, the defense didn’t necessarily get off the field, and there weren’t a lot of plays run in the first quarter, again. Hopefully that doesn’t become a recurring issue. But clearly trying to establish something in that first quarter, and it wasn’t there. All of a sudden, you start getting these big plays, but it’s like you said, the defense was playing specifically not to get beat over the top, so you don’t force it. You take what the defense is giving you.
I think, in my opinion, that was a really bright spot for Feleipe Franks in that he was able to remain patient, throw that two-yard pass that ends up getting three yards, three-yard jack, and just take what the defense is giving me. Don’t try to force things. A younger Feleipe Franks might have tried to force things and maybe ended up with a couple turnovers because of it. So, I think the game plan was just take what we’re being given. It wasn’t we’re not being given a ton of deep plays. They did come, because, like you said and like Dan Mullen said after the game, Florida just had different athletes on the field on Saturday.
Andrew: Yeah. Listen, I’m not going to say that it’s the prettiest most exciting thing to watch when they’re just dinking and dunking, but if that’s what they’re giving you, that’s what they’re giving you. You and I watched the Mississippi State game last year where that was all they did, and they won a game.
Andrew: Whatever it takes to win the game is what you want to do. Again, I thought that Feleipe had a good game for the most part. He had the really good throw to Van Jefferson on the deep post route that went for, what, 69?
Nick: 69. Nicest play of the season.
Andrew: That was really nice. A play too that stood out to me was the throw to Tyrie Cleveland. That was a play that a couple years ago Feleipe stands back and tries to throw it 500 miles an hour, probably throws an incomplete. Instead he throws a little changeup out there. Tyrie catches it. Boom. 35 yards later you’re in the endzone.
Nick: Also, the touchdown to Van, both Feleipe gets locked in on Van, because that was his first read. You could see at the beginning of the play, when I watched it back, he stayed on Van for a while. Van wasn’t open initially, and he looked off of him. He went over to, I think, Tyrie Cleveland. Tyrie Cleveland, they clouded Cleveland, and he goes back to Van. It’s just him going through progressions.
Normally that play is designed to have Van catch the ball on the other side of the hatch, like that’s how long Florida had to throw, how long Feleipe had to throw and how long the line gave him in pass pro. So, that just goes, credit the offensive line for giving him time to throw, but also credit Feleipe for going through his progressions, and Van for running the longest route he might run all season.
Andrew: Right. I mean, we talk about offensive line and that kind of stuff, and that was really good protection there. That’s what is kind of weird for me. Usually your pass blocking is something that comes on after run blocking, because run blocking is predicated on just man-man, being able to beat the guy in front of you. So, that’s kind of where, I don’t want to say concerning, by any means, but is a little odd, I guess is the best way to say it. You would think that these guys would be a little further along in the run blocking than they were pass blocking, but at least you got one of the two going there.
Nick, I wanted to hit on this, and maybe I’m being too critical, and if I am please correct me and tell me this. Where is the tight end play? Are you seeing any?
Nick: The 20-yard line made a really good tackle on Kyle Pitts. That play would have gone for at least 1st down on the first drive of the game. But yeah. It’s a huge part of Dan Mullen’s offense, and it has been every step of his career. We say you’re not going to be able to count on them when it comes to blocking, but there’s a lot of talent there when it comes to pass catching. You got to try to get them the ball, I think.
Andrew: Right. I don’t know if you have the stats in front of you from Week 1.
Nick: I do.
Andrew: The tight ends had two catches for three yards in this game on Saturday. That’s not what Dan Mullen’s offense is about. Kyle Pitts has been a guy that we’ve thought very highly of, and he just hasn’t done very much.
Nick: He’s the only one with a catch. He had two catches for three yards against Tennessee Martin and three for 33 against Miami. That’s the only production Florida has from the tight position. Five catches for 36 yards.
Andrew: Nothing from Lucas Krull yet. It’s a situation where if you’re Dan Mullen and you’re this offensive staff, you’ve got to figure out a way to get those guys involved. There’s zero reason Kyle Pitts and Lucas Krull should not have multiple catches and that kind of stuff. I think that’s something you’ve got to figure out.
One thing that did stand out a little bit, or I don’t want to say stood out, but continues to show, is that these running backs can catch the ball out of the backfield. Perine had three catches again. Nay’Quan had a catch out of the backfield. Overall, these running backs are very good being all-around backs.
Nick: Yeah. That’s a huge thing. We knew that about Perine, but I think it’s good to see it from some of the other guys. Good to see Malik Davis get in and get a touchdown. He hadn’t scored, I think, since September 30, 2017. Obviously, he had been dealing with injuries, but good to see him score. Damien Pierce looked good. He looked like he was running behind his shoulder pads and running fast.
The biggest takeaway for me was, obviously, when you’re playing a team like UT Martin this is a game that you’re going to want to try and get some younger guys in. We talked about that. I wrote about it last week. 15 different freshmen, true freshmen, got in the game. Jacob Copeland scored. My goodness. I mean the place was about erupt. Finally, when people ask about Jacob Copeland, I got something to say. He’s a guy that, obviously, with Kadarius Toney being hurt, that role is going to be increased probably tenfold.
Nick: The young players getting some run. Then you look at CJ Henderson going down. Kaiir Elam gets an interception. That’s the first turnover that the Gators defense had caused all year. Jaydon Hill had a bunch of tackles. Let me pull that up real quick. Shawn Davis led the team in tackles. Five-yard tackle for loss on the very first play of the game. He’s not a young guy, but good to see him playing with Jeawon Taylor out with the injury. Jaydon Hill had four tackles, one solo, and a pass breakup. Chester Kimbrough got a lot of playing time. Bogle got a lot of playing time. I think we got a look into the future for the Gators. Your boy, Tyron Hopper got a tackle, his first career tackle.
Andrew: I know. I thought Elam and Jaydon Hill and Chester looked really good. Those three guys at corner looked really good. The play that stood out for me, Nick, was Kaiir Elam on the screen play, or the stand pass there, where he broke down in a beautiful tackling position, made a nice one-on-one tackle out in open field. That’s tough for a defensive back, especially a young defensive back.
Nick: I was going to say. That’s probably maybe, first off, he played the interception perfectly. I mean, just like a center in basketball, just had a position, watched the receiver’s eyes. As soon at the receiver’s eyes got big, he turned, and he was right there in position to make the play. I think that even that open field tackle that you’re talking about, to me, is even more impressive than the interception or playing well in coverage, because that is probably the hardest thing for cornerbacks to do is to break down in space and make open field tackles. Then, like you said, just be a parrot and copy what you’re saying, is that’s another thing that you have to take into account. You’re young, and you’re making that kind of play. So, I think that’s huge.
Andrew: Right. Absolutely. I thought that, like I said, with Chester and Jaydon Hill, I thought both of those guys played really well overall in the game. I thought both of those guys were around the ball. A guy, Nick, that we’ve talked about but I think has been overshined a little bit with Shawn Davis, and I know Shawn Davis only had six tackles. He did lead the team in tackles, but it seemed like, without going back and counting how many plays he was there, it seemed like he was in on a lot of plays. He was really that headhunter at safety that Florida’s been looking for. I’ll say this. I think Shawn Davis finally showed us all what we knew Shawn Davis could do.
Nick: Yeah. I think almost ironic that he got the opportunity because of injury, because injuries have kind of kept him off the field.
Nick: I’m writing this. It’ll be up on Monday. Shawn Davis kind of opened up to us after the game and said, I lost confidence in myself, and it really Ron English was the one that kind of brought me back to it and kind of made me remember the player that I am, the player that I was, the player that I am, the player that I could be. That’s something we don’t think about a lot. These guys are human, and for somebody like Shawn Davis, when you’re coming from high school where you’re the man, and then, all of a sudden, you’re going into your third year and you’ve barely played. You’ve been injured. You just start doubting yourself. That can really affect your performance and affect everything you do. Good for him and good for Ron English, being a coach and continuing to get the most out of his players and to help his players on the field and off the field there, because starting to lack confidence is an off the field issue as well.
Andrew: Absolutely. After injury after injury after injury, you can definitely lose that confidence. I thought he played really well. I thought that he was around the ball, and I thought he played well in the game.
Another guy that stood out to me, Nick. He didn’t start, obviously. He played with the young guys, but it was Khris Bogle. I thought Khris Bogle had a really, really good game. Had a sack in the game, tackle for loss in the game. As far as young guys go, I thought Khris Bogle played really well.
Nick: He’s a guy that certainly going to be looking for down the line, and maybe down the line isn’t even next year. Maybe it’s down the line this season.
Andrew: Right. Yeah. I mean, when we talk about that position, and we say all the time it’s easy to get on the field in that position in 3rd downs, because all you got to do is go rush the passer, but he was even doing it in the running game as well. I thought that was what was impressive was how he was doing it in the running game as well. He was playing really well overall and really getting off the ball. Him and Jeremiah Moon. Jeremiah Moon, good grief. It seemed like he knew the snap count out there.
Nick: He’s putting it all together this year, and that’s great to see from him. He’s a good kid, smart kid. Has done everything the right way off the field for the better part of three year? Is he a redshirt junior?
Andrew: Yeah. Redshirt junior.
Nick: Four years now. Good to see him start to translate. We talked about that. I talked about that with Feleipe Franks, finally getting that kind of production to make you feel like all the work you put in since you’ve been on campus is doing something. Good for Jeremiah Moon, because you and I know how hard he’s worked, and it’s starting to show. It paid dividends on the field, so good for him.
Andrew: Yeah. Again, that’s a big one. You need him to play well. When you have Jonathan Greenard out there, when you have Jabari out there, it’s good to have a guy like Moon that’s able to come in and help spare those guys some time, and also his ability to get out in space and to cover a little bit as well is huge. I think that he’s a guy that we all knew he could play, it was just when was he going to put it all together, and then could he stay healthy?
Nick: Exactly. Let’s start knocking wood when we talk about that, when we talk about healthy.
Andrew: Yeah. There you go. Any other guys that kind of stood out to you?
Nick: You mentioned Bogle. I thought he is a guy that stood out to me. I think Lacedrick Brunson is a guy that stood out to me kind of late. He’s someone that has gotten praise. He’s really only playing special teams but got some run yesterday as well. I think TJ Slaton played well. He had half a sack. David Reese had half a sack. Was just really impressed mostly by the young guys getting their first opportunity, some of them.
Andrew: Yeah. I mean, people were asking in the middle of the start of the game, why was Hill playing, why was Chester playing and CJ wasn’t? It was simple. I mean, if Florida needed all their starters to play every minute of that game on Saturday, then you and I are in for a long season. This team is in for a long season. They didn’t need that. It was an opportunity for Jaydon and Chester and those guys to get some good on good out there as well and to play with that first team. It looks like, unfortunately, it paid off, because some of those guys are going to have to play now. You’re looking at going down the road here, on the road at Kentucky on Saturday, one of those guys are going to have to step up and play.
Andrew: I will ask you this. Do you move Trey Dean out to corner now, or do you stick with the young guys?
Nick: That’s a million-dollar question right now. I think if it were me I would, my first move would be to try Trey Dean.
Andrew: Trey Dean doesn’t look comfortable at the nickel.
Nick: Not as comfortable as I thought, for sure. Yeah. I really expected him to be good to go there.
Andrew: Right. He just doesn’t look comfortable to me.
Nick: Yeah. No, I agree.
Andrew: That’s why I’m kind of like go ahead and move him out there. Let’s see what he can do out there. Let’s see if he can kind of get that magic going again.
Nick: Real quick, before we get into our picks from a couple days ago. Shout out to Iverson Clement, another guy who’s kind of just been biding time. He looked good when he got the opportunity. I don’t see him getting a lot of opportunities this year, just because of how deep that room is, but take advantage of the opportunities that you’re given, and you’ll get more in the future. Good for him.
Andrew: Yeah. Kyle Trask with a touchdown too.
Nick: The Trask train. The Trask hive is alive and well.
Andrew: That’s right. So, overall, 25 of 27 for Feleipe, 270, two touchdowns. Then 37 on the ground. You’ll take that overall. Let me ask you this, Nick. This is a question that I meant to ask you a little earlier, but I’ll ask you now. At the beginning of the third quarter, Florida was still really low on plays run. They ended the game with 74, and that’s okay. That’s pretty good. Do you feel like this offense needs to ramp it up a little bit?
Nick: Yeah. I think so. I think I was getting to that a little bit saying they were trying to establish the running game. They did run. Their run tempo that first drive, trying to force that, but I think you need to run more plays. Remember in the past we said, like with some Will Muschamp offenses and some of the early McElwain offenses, we said, listen, you can’t. This offense isn’t good enough. They’re not going to execute 52 plays. They’re not going to win games if they’re only running 52 plays, because they’re not going to be successful enough and have a successful enough percentage of those 52 plays to win football games.
I think Dan Mullen’s team and this offense is so deep that you can win games like that, but you also have so many players and so many weapons that you could be running that kind of tempo, because you have enough depth to be able to run guys in and out. Or just if you’re going to be running tempo where you don’t have enough time to run guys in and out, you have enough guys, like we’ll just give Jacob Copeland an entire series, and he can take the next series off. Hey, go out there, empty your tank, because you’re going to have a full offensive series off after that. Just keep running tempo. So, yeah. I think they have the ability to run more plays, the ability to run that kind of tempo, and I just think they need to figure out ways to do it.
Andrew: Like you said, and your running back room is deep, so if Perine gets a whole series, or Malik or Damien or any of those guys, you can easily rotate those guys in. That would be the biggest thing for me, if I was looking at this game and saying what can they improve. Run blocking, find a way to get the ball to tight ends more, and pick up the pace a little bit. I feel like when this offense is going at its best its got a little tempo. Not necessarily hurry up, snap the ball with 25 seconds still left on the clock, but just getting to the line, putting more pressure on those guys.
Nick: I agree.
Andrew: Any final thoughts on the game overall?
Nick: Got in. Got the win. Did what you need to do. I’m excited for SEC play to start.
Andrew: Yeah. Overall it was kind of what you wanted from the game. You got a lot of young guys some time. You got a lot of guys time on the offensive and defensive side of the ball. You’re able to get some work in. You won 45-0. I will say at times it was boring, but at the end of the day, you won.
Nick: Yeah. Let’s get into our picks before we get on out of here. Good week of picking games for me. We both picked Clemson.
Nick: I picked BYU to upset Tennessee.
Andrew: What a game.
Nick: Tennessee 0-2.
Andrew: What a game.
Nick: An incredible game. That prevent defense prevented them from winning at the end of the game.
Andrew: That was just awful, man. Then BYU just to push their way into the endzone to win the game.
Nick: Out there at BYU.
Andrew: What in the world. I mean, I don’t know. This is something that is out there, not that it’s true. I mean, I’m not saying it’s true at all, but it’s definitely a conspiracy theory. Did Phil Fulmer high Jeremy Pruitt just so he could name himself the interim head coach?
Nick: Maybe. That’s your boy.
Andrew: Oh, no. I’m good. Now, listen, I’ll say this. I like Jeremy Pruitt. I think Jeremy Pruitt’s a fine football coach. I did say I wondered how he would do as the head coach, but I will say this, he’s got to right the train quick. You’re rebuilding. Yes. We all know that. He’s rebuilding. At the same time, you can’t lose these games like this. I mean, you’re just at times acting like you’re not even out there.
Nick: You get Chattanooga this week. Shoot, don’t lose that one. Right.
Andrew: Don’t lose that one.
Nick: Don’t come to Gainesville 0-3.
Andrew: Worst loss, them or FSU barely winning?
Nick: I mean, shoot.
Andrew: A loss is a loss.
Nick: If you’re listening– Knocked my headset out. If you’re listening to this and an FSU fan mentions Florida players blocking each other, don’t listen to that crap anymore, because they had a dude literally lined up facing the wrong direction.
Andrew: What in the world was he doing?
Nick: That play is called dehydration. I think that’s what that play call is.
Nick: Quick call from the sideline.
Andrew: Something was weird going on there. That was weird. Something weird was going on there. I mean, what are you doing Willie? Again, you go in at halftime, you got a little momentum, and then that? What are you doing?
Nick: Needing a missed PAT to beat. Jeez. That’s just a disaster. Okay. Anyway, we both picked Miami.
Andrew: We did.
Nick: Not good.
Andrew: No. That wasn’t good at all. Sam Howell looks like he’s going to be a pretty good quarterback.
Nick: He does. He does. Good for Mack Brown. And Mack Brown stole him from Willie.
Andrew: Yeah. And his offensive coordinator.
Nick: You picked the Texas game right. I didn’t think Joe Burrow was built for that. My goodness. LSU learned how to offense in the offseason, and Joe Burrow, had yourself a game, young man. Damn near 500 yards.
Andrew: They never took the foot off the pedal. It was just boom, let’s go. They went after it. I tell you what, Nick. That LSU football team with an offense, that’s scary.
Nick: Good luck. Good luck. I picked Ole Miss. You picked Arkansas. I’ll take a win there. Let’s get into our three players.
Andrew: We both picked Clemson.
Nick: We called that Clemson game right. I think Texas A&M scored late, little backdoor cover, but we both were right on that. We said, I think Kellen Mond is good, and I think he got dinged up a little bit towards that game with an ankle or a foot something. He looked good, and I thought Texas A&M played well, especially early. Then made it closer late. That’s a defending national champion. That’s a really good Clemson team. I think Texas A&M is going to be good with Jimbo, and they’re going to be good with Kellen Mond.
Andrew: Yeah. For sure. Go ahead with our players.
Nick: I’m going to take a win for Feleipe Franks. Throwing for another 250, another cool, what’d he throw over? 270. Two touchdowns. Took care of the football. 25 of 27. Completed his first 15 passes before that halftime heave. I think I’m going to take a no for Zach Carter. Even when he got in there I didn’t really see him. He didn’t really stick out too much. I want to take a win for Trevon Grimes.
Andrew: No. Not happening.
Nick: I think he worked his tail off. He didn’t get in the endzone. Got close to getting in the endzone, set up a touchdown. Five catches, led the team with catches. Five catches for 56 yards. It’s the most he was used this season, and I think I should get a win for Trey.
Andrew: No. No. Who was my players?
Nick: You’re players were Josh Hammond. That’s a no.
Andrew: But Josh Hammond worked hard.
Nick: Four catches for 22 yards.
Andrew: But he worked hard for those four catches for 22 yards. He did.
Nick: Well, then I get a no for Trey Grimes.
Andrew: Okay. As long as we’re getting noes. I mean, we’re not just giving out wins here for five catches for 50 yards. This is UT Martin.
Nick: Do you get one for Marco Wilson?
Andrew: No. What’d he do?
Nick: You get one for Lamical Perine?
Andrew: Yeah. We both went 1 for 3.
Nick: Perine had 10 carries, 51 yards, touchdown.
Andrew: He got in the endzone.
Nick: Okay. All right. So, I’m 3 of 6 on the year. You are 2 of 6 on the year picking players.
Andrew: We’re not setting the world on fire here. At least you don’t have to disband picking Feleipe from now on.
Nick: There you go. I’m allowed to pick Feleipe again.
Andrew: There you go. You’re allowed to pick him again. That was good. Listen, I will say that I thought that overall this team was much more disciplined in the game. Let me see here. Penalties. Do you have the penalties? Three for 30 for Florida, so much better. Not the boneheaded junk that we saw in the game against Miami. A lot of that can be for rivalries, that kind of stuff. That is that.
So, again, Florida can go into this game against Kentucky, and we’ll see if Terry Wilson can play. He went out. That was nasty. We’ll see how that is, and then we’ll see how the guys for Florida are. That’ll be the question mark going into this game is who’s healthy, who’s not.
Nick: Yeah. We haven’t gotten anything official, but it looks like Kentucky is going to be without their quarterback in Terry Wilson. Mark Stoops, they were throwing the ball with Sawyer, what’s his last name?
Andrew: Came from Troy.
Nick: Yeah. Where is it? Sorry. Sawyer Smith. He’s a transfer from Troy. They were throwing the ball late, and then Mark Stoops was telling the Eastern Michigan coach, sorry that we’re throwing the ball late, I had to get that quarterback a few snaps, because my guy, talking about Terry Wilson, is out for the year. Which is just a coach thing. Hey, man, the game was over. We didn’t need to throw the ball, but let me tell you why we were throwing the ball.
Nick: That’d be a huge blow. Sawyer Smith is mobile, but certainly you’re going to have to change the offense, because Terry, Florida fans know, he murdered Florida with his legs last year. Yeah. It’s an interesting thing that’s going to play out this week to see what is the status of the quarterback, and how do you get ready for a guy that you don’t have much tape on?
Andrew: Right. You got to do that. You got to go into this game. Like Dan Mullen said, you got to be clean in a lot of areas and be ready to go. One thing I wanted to hit on, Nick. I wanted to ask you this. I don’t want to come off as negative, but are you a little concerned about punt return?
Nick: Not yet.
Nick: Not yet. I think they went after one yesterday and didn’t even get close.
Andrew: Just doesn’t seem like they’re getting the protection for Freddy Swain back there as maybe they have in the past.
Nick: I think that was one of the reasons. I mean, they come after all of them, but if you bring nine guys, you’re not going to have protection. That’s the one where you tell the punt returner, hey, we’re trying to get them after this one, so as soon as the ball is hiked, put your hand in the air. You’re fair catching it no matter what.
Andrew: Exactly. Nick, let’s get out of here. We’ll see everyone on Wednesday, as we’ll break down this Kentucky game. Come check us out on Gator Country. We’ll have some updates and everything on the injured guys, as well as recruiting and all that good jazz.
Nick: www.GatorCountry.com for all your Florida Gators news. The podcast is there in audio and transcript form, in case you want to read it. Podcast, wherever you consume your podcasts. Search Gator Country. Subscribe. Never miss an episode. Do your social media thing. @GatorCountry on Facebook and Twitter. @TheGatorCountry on Instagram. I’m @NickdelaTorreGC, and he’s @AndrewSpiveyGC.
Andrew: There you go. Guys, we appreciate it. We’ll see everyone on Wednesday. As always, go Braves and chomp, chomp.
Nick: You stay classy, Gator Country.