The Volunteers face their arch enemy this Saturday when they face Florida at Neyland Stadium in Knoxville.
This is not the Tim Tebow Florida, but do not think this will be a walk in the park. The Gators are 1-0 in the SEC, as is Tennessee and both are 2-o overall.
The gators managed a win over Texas A&M last week, but looked week on the offensive side of the ball. Even though their offensive coordinator Brent Pease praised them.
“We say the strength of the team is our o-line,” Pease said. “I think they’ve been consistent from spring, spring on. Because there’s some good kids up there.”
That said, Jeff Driskel, who made his first career start as the Gator’s quarterback, was caught in the backfield eight times and it cost the Gators 48 yards. Head coach Will Muschamp has admitted that Driscoll sometimes holds the ball too long.
Florida ended the day with 249 rushing yards against the Aggies on 40 carries. Driskel was 13 of 16, with only 162 yards.
“We know that Tennessee is definitely going to come at me, because we put it on film and I’m susceptible to hold the ball too long or try and get outside and not throw it away,” Driskel said. “I will definitely work on that.”
Tennessee’s Justin Hunter has a personal reason to beat Florida. He has thought about it for a whole year. He tore his anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee in the loss to Florida last September.
The Vols have lost seven-straight to Florida. And you better believe they are all ready for that streak to snap.
Since last year we wanted to beat them,” said Maurice Couch, “and as a team we know what we have to do. We have a different mindset from last year and we are more united as a team. We have to practice hard and go in and execute our plan.”
“We watched film and [Jeff Driskel] is a pretty good mobile quarterback,” said Marlon Walls. “He can move around a little bit and that makes our job a little harder. We have to keep him in the pocket. I think the best way is to go after him. If you sit back and let the guy throw the ball around, he is a pretty good passer too. Our philosophy is to go out there and get him and try our best to get after that guy.”
ESPN will broadcast its live “ESPN College GameDay” program in Circle Park, outside Neyland Stadium, from 9 a.m. to noon Saturday. Fans will be admitted to a viewing area near the show stage no earlier than 7 a.m. Saturday morning. Only fans with permits can park on the UT campus.
This is the first time ESPN has visited the UT campus since 2004, which coincidentally was the last time the Vols defeated the Gators.
The following items are prohibited before and during the show:
Food or drink
Signs promoting .com, .net or .org websites
Bookbags, purses, or bags of any kind
Markers, pens, pencils, or dry-erase boards
Throwing items is also prohibited during the live telecast.
By Nancy Morris