After one play, some torrential rain, and countless lightning strikes in and around Gainesville, the University of Florida’s season-opener against Idaho was suspended and eventually canceled. Now the Gators gets to open up the 2014 season again, this time hosting Eastern Michigan on Saturday, Sept. 6 at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium. Kick-off at The Swamp is scheduled for 4:00 p.m. and coverage will air live nationally on the SEC Network. The Baltimore Gator Club with host a watch party at The Greene Turtle in McHenry Row where all Gators will receive a free raffle ticket to win Gator swag and Greene Turtle gift certificates. So come out in your best Orange and Blue and cheer on the Mighty Gators!
Also, the Baltimore Gator Club will host a Meet-and-Greet with the executive board on Friday, Sept. 5 at The BoatHouse in Canton, beginning at 5:00 p.m.
Florida only got one play in last week against the Vandals, and it was a doozy. The aptly named Valdez Showers fielded a short kickoff at his own 22 yard line and proceeded to weave his way around the Idaho coverage team, all the way down to the 14 yard line. If only he had scored…
Now the Gators get another chance to start the season off right. Quarterback Jeff Driskel retakes the reins for the UF offense, this time taking cues from new Offensive Coordinator Kurt Roper, who comes to Gainesville from Duke. Roper brings with him a more up-tempo game plan, and looks to use Driskel’s abilities in and out of the pocket.
Eastern Michigan was able to get its first game of the season in last week in Ypsilanti, earning a 31-28 win over Morgan State in head coach Chris Creighton’s first game in charge. The Eagles also suffered a rain delay (only 57 minutes), and then survived a last-second field goal attempt by the Bears to claim the win. EMU racked up 292 yards on the ground, 114 of which came on 19 carries by Bronson Hill. Ryan Brumfield converted eight carries for 57 yards and two touchdowns. Reginald Bell and Brogan Roback split time at QB for the Eagles, combining to pass for 99 yards.
Saturday’s game will be the second meeting all-time between Florida and Eastern Michigan with the Gators running rampant to a 49-10 home victory back in 2004. That game was delayed for 64 minutes due to lightning in the Gainesville area. Current wide receivers coach Chris Leak, then a sophomore, tossed three touchdowns while Ciatrick Fason rushed for 105 yards and two scores for the Gators.