For each game this year, I am going to do my pre-game previews by running down the songs that make up the Gator band’s pre-game show.
Florida has not lost the first game of the season since 1989, when the Gators, who would finish 7-5, lost to Ole Miss, who would finish 8-4, by a score of 24-19.
Urban Meyer Fanfare
Urban Meyer has never lost the first game of the year as a head coach. At Bowling Green, he beat Missouri 20-13 in 2001 and Tennessee Tech 41-7 in 2002. At Utah, he defeated Utah State 40-20 in 2003 and Texas A&M 41-21 in 2004. At Florida, he defeated Wyoming 32-14 in 2005 and Southern Miss 34-7 in 2006.
Orange and Blue
You’ll be hearing this song a lot on Saturday. If Florida doesn’t score on a drive for any other reason than a quarterback missing open receivers, it will be a huge upset.
Men of Florida
In this game, it’s actually not going to be a feature of the Men of Florida, but the boys. Most of the veterans should be out by various times in the second half, so all of the young players will see playing time. This game will go very similarly to the UCF and Western Carolina games of last year.
Get ready for another year of the UF marketing droids playing up The Gator Nation to try to drum up interest and donations for the ol’ Alma Mater. I hate that phrase, The _____ Nation. Don’t ask we why, I just don’t like it.
We are the Boys March
Florida’s offense should have no problems marching up and down the field. Florida’s players are better athletes than most I-A teams, so the difference between Florida and Western Kentucky, which is technically in its first I-A year in 2007, is huge. If you saw the Murray State – Louisville game last night, the Cardinals players looked like giants next to the Racers players. That’s what it’ll look like in the Swamp tomorrow.
Gators Spell Out
I hate this fake word, but it’s about the only one that can accurately describe the level of the beat down that’s coming tomorrow.
A lot of young players are going to be getting plenty of audition time Saturday one the starters are done with the half or so that they’ll play.
T: Tim Tebow
Yes, national media, Tim Tebow can throw, and we’ll see him do some of that today. It won’t prove much, but it should be enough to shut a few people up.
O: One Team
There are almost no Zook players left, and those that are left, like Andre Caldwell, have fully bought into the Urban Meyer system of both on and off the field life. In Meyer’s first year, he had a lot of issues with people resisting his methods, and some of that even carried over to the beginning of 2006. No more. They’re all his team now.
Florida has a ton of them, and they’re all good. It starts with Percy Harvin, but even the 7th best player in the stable could start on most teams in the country. These guys will lead the offense and put up some huge numbers this year.
Florida’s schedule is nowhere near as tough as it was last year. There’s another tough stretch in the middle with Auburn, LSU, Kentucky, Georgia, Vanderbilt, and South Carolina all in a row, but Tennessee, Auburn, Vandy, and FSU are all home games this year and Alabama rotates off the schedule for Coach O and the Ole Miss Rebels.
The points will be flowing for the Gators like the brackish water of the river that lends its name to the final song in the preseason sequence. Enjoy it Florida fans, but for all practical purposes, Florida will still be 0-0 after this weekend since WKU is basically a I-AA team and the stats for this game should be thrown out when considering this season.
Gator football has returned. Go Gators!