Florida-Kentucky: Four Keys to a Gators Victory

Michael OleszekAnalyst IOctober 22, 2008

Coming off a bye week, the Gators look to improve on their 5-1 record thus far. Earlier in the week, they were ranked 10th in the initial BCS standings.

Kentucky is their opponent this week, as the Gators play towards winning the SEC Eastern Division. Florida has beaten Kentucky 21 years in a row, and this year should make 22 before heading into the showdown with Georgia.

Here's how the Gators will win.


Keep the machine humming

So many people have criticized the offense this season, myself included, that I think now we can finally be happy.

A sharper Tim Tebow, better O-line play, subtle formation adjustments, and the emergence of a one-two speed punch at running back have gotten the Gators offense firing on all cylinders.

Urban Meyer has made his reputation as being a 200/200 coach: 200 yards both passing and rushing. Achieving this type of offensive balance will help get the Gators to Atlanta.


Develop a true inside/outside running game

This week Emmanuel Moody is back in the fold at running back, and with the possibility of Chris Rainey not playing due to a shoulder injury, it will be on the shoulders of Moody and Tebow to handle the inside running game, with Demps, possibly Rainey, and Harvin working the outside perimeter. 

Developing the inside running game early will open up Aaron Hernandez and company underneath, forcing the safeties up in coverage, and by the second quarter the Gators can throw deeper routes and work the outside running lanes.


Shut the 'Cats down early

This shouldn't be too hard. Kentucky comes in without their two best offensive players, which is bad news considering their total offense is 90th in the nation and the scoring offense 63rd in the nation. Their QB Mike Hartline has been inconsistent all season. WR Randall Cobb has shown some promise, but not enough to pull off the upset.


Beware of the trap

This is a classic trap game.

One week until the SEC East-deciding Cocktail Party with the Georgia Bulldogs, the Gators come off a bye week, Kentucky has a lot of injuries, etc. This cannot creep into the mindset of a team that still has national title hopes.

If the Ole Miss game taught Florida anything, it's that anything can happen on any day. Come out focused, put Kentucky away early, get your backups some game reps, and then focus on Georgia.


Final Score Prediction: Florida 45, Kentucky 7

This article can also be found on http://www.collegeotr.com/university_of_florida/florida-kentucky_four_keys_to_a_gators_victory_13657