Following a tough road loss at Alabama, and a bye week, the Florida Gators get back on the gridiron when they travel up to Knoxville for a Saturday matinee against Tennessee. Kick-off at Neyland Stadium is slated for 12:00 p.m. with the game airing on the SEC Network. The Baltimore Gator Club will once again host a watch party for the SEC East Division rivalry, with raffles and specials available for all those wearing Orange and Blue. We’ve had great crowds so far, and are looking to continue to build, so bring your friends and family along for the fun! Remember that raffles tickets will be distributed for a chance to win Gator swag, with additional tickets available for $1 with the proceeds going towards a Gator Club scholarship.
Florida (2-1, 1-1 SEC) hung with the highly ranked Tide for three quarters thanks to a tenacious ball-hawking defense, but eventually succumbed, and fell in Tuscaloosa, 42-21. After falling behind early, the Gators used timely turnovers to hang with Alabama and knot the score at 21-21 in the third quarter courtesy of a tipped-ball interception and 14-yard touchdown run by Jeff Driskel. The redshirt junior QB struggled, however, and the Tide pulled away with 21 straight points down the stretch. The Gators currently lead the nation in turnover margin, with an average gain of +2.67.
Tennessee (2-2, 0-1 SEC) played tough between the hedges in Athens, but ended up on the short end for the second time against a ranked opponent, losing to Georgia, 35-32. Two weeks earlier the Vols lost at Oklahoma, 34-10. Vols signal caller Justin Worley threw for 264 yards and three scores against UGA, despite missing some time in the third quarter. The senior is completing 60% of his passes this year and has tossed nine touchdowns, while getting picked off three times.
The Gators have won nine straight meetings with the Volunteers, the longest win streak for either side in the rivalry that dates back to 1916 (a 24-0 UT win in Tampa). Tennessee last defeated UF back in 2004 when James Wilhoit converted a 50-yard field goal with six seconds remaining, after a dubious personal foul on Dallas Baker, to give the Vols the 30-28 win on Rocky Top. Since then the Gators have rattled off nine consecutive wins with the average margin of victory standing at 15.3 points.