The Florida Gators are 7-1 and have more wins than their two in-state rivals (University of Miami and Florida State University) have combined (six) and sit-on-top of the SEC East – not much more you could ask for eight games into the 2019 season.
Sure, Saturday’s game in Columbia, S.C. wasn’t always the prettiest, but the Gators were able to make adjustments, follow their game plan, and win a tough road SEC game against a team that had, just a week ago, upset the then number-3, University of Georgia.
The Gators enter the bye week at an opportune time for injury recover and a renewed focus on winning the SEC East with three East foes to close out their SEC slate and Florida State to end the regular season.
With two weeks until the showdown in Jacksonville, FL against the Gators biggest rival in the Georgia Bulldogs, the Gators can rest their laurels on an improving offensive line and a strong offensive attack that has found its rhythm and a defense that made the right adjustments despite a number of key injuries.
While we wait until the match-up at the World’s Largest Cocktail Party, let’s see how the Gators stacked-up against South Carolina and how the stats look eight games into the year.
- Through eight games, the Gators have thrown for more passing yards this season than the entirety of the 2017, 2014, 2013 and 2012 seasons.
- Dameon Pierce’s 75-yard run was the third play the Gators have had this season that went for 75-yards or more, which breaks the Gators record for plays in a season going longer than 75-yards.
- The Gators have now scored more points in eight games (260) than they did in 2017 (243) and 2013 (226) and the defense is on pace (189 projected points allowed) to have their best scoring defense since 2012 (188 points allowed).
- Despite starting the season allowing opponents to score just five-of-the-14 times they entered the red zone, the Gators have allowed their last two opponents to score the last seven times they’ve entered the red zone (six touchdowns, one field goal).
- The Gators defense has caused a turnover in 17-of-the-21 games Todd Grantham has led the defense and has caused a sack in 19-of-the-21 games (Gators rank 2nd in the country in sacks)
- The Gators first-half passing offense has the third-best 1st half touchdown-to-interception ratio (12-1) in the country.
- The Gators rank 3rd in the country in third-down passing percentage and the 10th most number of first downs on 3rd down passing.
- The Gators rank 11th in the country in scoring defense (15.8) and 25th in the country in total defense.
- South Carolina was 7-of-18 on third down and the Gators sit 40th in the country in 3rd down defense.
- The Gators rank 3rd in the country on 4th down defense.
- David Reese ranks 1st in the SEC in tackles with 66 (8.25/game)
- Kyle Trask is third in the SEC in both touchdowns and touchdown-to-interception ratio.
- Kyle Pitts still leads all SEC tight-ends (second nationally) in catches (35) and yards (391).