So I'm back this morning. We came in actually kind of early last night, a little after midnight. We have a big day (and night) ahead of us tonight. My buddy Scott is fighting off a little of the brown bottle flu this morning. I told him to eat yesterday. The thing is, he's no rookie at this. I told him this morning that was the equivalent of LeBron missing a dunk or Peyton forgetting the snap count.
Anyway, I'm checking in now because we're heading to the stadium a little after noon to start tailgating, and I won't be able to get back to a computer.
If I wasn't sticking out enough last night wearing a white LSU polo, I'm wearing my gold TDT Tailgating shirt today just for good measure.
So instead of recounting last night's events, which I will do a little later in the week, I thought I'd give my take on the game before I head over to the stadium.
The game is tricky. At first glance, you think shootout. With the weapons the Sooners and Gators have on offense, with the speed to boot, that's what your football brain automatically computes.
There's been a healthy amount of trash talk on both sides, which has added to the flavor of this matchup. Both teams will be long on ego and possibly short on tempers. But Utah argument aside, these are still two teams that have been playing lights out football after their respective hiccups this year.
As for the pace of the game, I'm going against the grain and saying it'll be much more like the Fiesta Bowl matchup between Texas and Ohio State. I think both squads will start out slow and feel each other out while trading punches (figuratively of course).
A field position game favors the Gators, while I think if it's a blowout, I like the Sooners. I could easily see OU winning by 30, but not the Gators by that margin.
I don't see it going that way though because I think this one starts slow. But I think the score-fest starts in the late second or third quarter. After making adjustments, both Bradford and Tebow settle in.
Now the big argument I've heard from Florida fans is that OU hasn't seen a defense like the Gators. And you know what, they're right.
Florida has not seen an offense like the Sooners this season. In order for Florida to keep pace, they'll need to use the speed they have on the perimeter. OU's secondary is well equipped, but I think the Sooner linebackers may have a little trouble tonight. If Oklahoma wants to bring in an extra player in the secondary to battle the spread, that may be wise.
On the other side, the battle will be on the lines. If the OU offensive line can hold the pressure from UF's rushers, then that'll give the WRs time to exploit the secondary. The Gator secondary has played above its head this year, and to keep that trend up, they'll need the pass rush to limit Bradford's time in the pocket. Bradford having time will spell bad news for Florida.
In the end, I think one team makes one mistake, one crucial gaffe, that costs their team in a nail-biter. I think the Gators get a special teams play to go their way in crunch time to win a thriller.
I can't wait to see this one. I really think it's going to be special.
Gators 38, Sooners 34
Of course, I could be way off, and that's what I like about this game—I wouldn't be surprised if I am.
Either way, this Bleacher Creature is having a blast.