The worlds largest outdoor cocktail party as they call it, the match up on the last October of every season between the Florida Gators and the Georgia Bulldogs. This year the Gators and Dogs are both ranked in the top ten for the first time since 2008, a year in which the Gators won 49-10 and eventually went on to win the National Championship. This year the Bulldogs come in ranked 7th which isn't too much of a surprise as many people expected them to be a top ten team. The Gators are the surprise in this group, coming in ranked 9th in the nation after getting off to a 6-1 start with wins over two ranked teams including the currently 4th ranked LSU Tigers.
Weather or not both teams were in the top ten or if one team was a .500 team which many people expected to start the season this game would be very exciting due to the nature of the rivalry. The Bulldogs won big last year bu the Gators have won 18 of the past 25 basically dominating the series since the turn of the century. This game could be the determining factor of who wins the SEC East this year if things play out and the loser is most likely eliminated from the CFB playoff discussion. With so much on the line it is sure to be a very fun game to watch.
This year there is a lot of momentum on one side and not a lot on the other. The Gators come in on a 5 game with streak while the Bulldogs come in following a 20 point blowout loss to LSU. The Gators are still the underdogs heading into this game but as they are trending up and the Bulldogs trending down the Gators may have the advantage when it comes to momentum. The Gators have also been tested way more than the Bulldogs so far facing Kentucky who is currently ranked 12th in the nation, LSU who is currently ranked 4th and Miss State on the road who was ranked 23rd at the time. The Bulldogs on the other end have only faced one ranked team up to this point that being LSU with their best win over South Carolina who is currently 3-3. The Dogs have a big chance this week to finally get a signature win and if not then next week when they travel to Kentucky to face the Wildcats.
Looking into this game it should be a fairly low scoring game if things stay true. The Bulldogs offense struggled last week against the Tigers and the Gators have a similar defense in terms of talent level. The key on this side of the ball will be if Jake Fromm has enough time to get the ball off against a strong Florida pass rush. If he can then the dogs could have success as their run game isn't nearly what it was last year. On the other side of the ball the key will be Florida's run game against Georgia's run defense. The Gators have had the most success when they have been able to run the ball to take pressure off Felipe Franks and not making him create big plays.
This game will be won and lost in the trenches. Each team is loaded with talented players on the edge and both teams are very well coached. If the Florida O-line can push around the Georgia D-line they should be able to put up some points the same way that LSU did a week ago. On the other side if the Georgia O-line can hold off the Florida pass rush then the Dogs should be able to move the ball down field through the air like they were able to last year when their offense was rolling.
This game is honestly a toss up and it will be a real measuring stick for both teams. Is Georgia a legit team like last year or have they just rolled through weak competition to start the year. This will also show us if Florida is really back or if they just got LSU on a good week with a one off upset. I think it will be a close, semi- low scoring game but I honestly think the Gators are playing really well right now and if they keep improving the way they have since their loss in week two they go on and upset the dogs in this one. I like the Gators winning 24-20.