Friday, July 28, 2017

2017 Gator Football prognostication!

Last year, let’s see what I wrote about the season before it began!

So there you go, that’s my picks for the year. A 9-3 season that may be good enough to get the Gators back to Atlanta or it may only be good enough for third in the east. Let’s hope we can keep our starters away from GNC this year and perhaps we will have an even better ending to the season than the beginning.

I missed on the Arkansas game and my hedged bet with the Vols came true and I knew we didn’t have enough for the Noles last year so I was pretty much on track with my picks. Getting to Atlanta to face the Tide is always a tricky thing, you want to get there because you can’t win the SEC without doing so, but playing Bama for the title is a big mountain to climb. Saban has it rolling in T-town and while you might not like it, until you knock em off, they are the kings of the mountain!

So let’s see if we can get close again this year!

We kick it off with Michigan in Jerry’s World Stadium. I honestly think this is a toss up game that could come down to one major break either way. So I’ll take the loss in the book for me and say the Gators will win this one. I think a whole summer of hearing how they didn’t show up for the bowl game against UM will be a motivational factor for the orange and blue.

Northern Colorado comes to town in week two and the first home night game of the season. The fans will be up, the players will be up and while it will be closer than some season openers, the Gators will be sitting at 2-0 after week 2!

The annual beat down of the Vols…oh wait, they won last year didn’t they? Yep and it will only be a one game winning streak. The Vols are not going to end the losing streak in Gainesville on a September hot Saturday afternoon. The Swamp will rock out in blue and send the creamsicles home in a puddle.

The game with Kentucky is a hard one to call. Coach Stoops has them moving in the right direction and the game being in the bluegrass state makes me a little nervous. Another streak is on the line but I’ll take the Gators to win a close one and once again we will hear the cheers of wait till basketball!

The Gators finish the month with the game against Vanderbilt. The Doors will be tough again but at home they will not be able to hang with the Gators. The Vanderbilt navy will get beached on the Florida sand and the Gators will be undefeated heading into a homecoming battle with the LSU tigers!

Coach O and the tigers better pray there is another hurricane that forces this game to move to Baton Rouge again! Otherwise, the fans are going to be over hyped for this matchup. Too much has been made of the events that led to the Gators heroic fourth down stop on the last play of the game in Tigertown last year. Gator fans need to hope the QB situation has settled down because with the LSU defense, we’re going to need solid play from the QB to win it. I think we get it and the Gators move into the top 5.

Texas A&M is the classic trap game and I think the Gators will fall into the trap. I look for the team to come out flat, rally late but fall short for the year’s first loss in the swamp and in the SEC race.

After a bye week, the annual grudge game happens in Jacksonville. This one should determine who wins the eastern division. I like the Gators chances if we still have the same QB. Either Kirby has one of those great second year moves or the talk will be about why he can’t beat the Gators either in Jacksonville and some of the dog fans will be howling about moving the game!

The Gators should win at Missouri but we haven’t played particularly well there in the past. Let’s hope this team gets down to business on the west side swing of the eastern division of the SEC schedule. Yeah that makes no sense to anyone outside of the home offices either.

The fighting chickens await the Gators for another road trip in consecutive weeks this time to the far eastern team in the SEC east! It will be a hard fought contest, but I think the offense of the Gators will be better than the offense of the Gamecocks, so we come back home with the lone loss.
UAB is a rebuilding team after some alumni got to the legislators in Alabama and demanded they reinstate the program. Look for a lot of guys to play in this one as the started should be able to rest the second half in preparation for the GAME of the year.

The game against the Noles is the biggest game of Coach Mac’s short career here in Gainesville. He needs to avoid the reputation of always being beat by Jimbo. I’ll hedge my pick here a little by saying that if Florida has the same starting QB from week 4 playing in this game they win. That would be the first time in like 6 years that was the case. So to all my Nole friends, I know you’ve won but you’ve had a lot of help prior to the game, some of it self inflicted by the Gators! I don’t think the Gators can win this game with a backup QB but then again I don’t think the Noles can either. So whichever team is healthier will probably win. Let’s hope it’s the Gators this time.

So an 11-1 season is not out of the realm of possibility here. But I can also see a scenario from a couple of key injuries to Callaway not being able to stay out of trouble off the field where the tide could turn and the Gators finish 7-4. Let’s stick with the positive side and hope for a great year to be a fan of Florida Football.

Then as a reward, we get BAMA! Hey but to win it, you must be in it. And one of these times, the ball is going to bounce the opposite way and Saban is going to lose his mind! Let’s hope it’s this year folks.

Go Gators!