NASHVILLE, Tenn. - Faster than a speeding bullet.
That's how fast the Gators are storming to Atlanta.
Colder than a 38-degree night in Nashville. That's how cold and cutthroat the Gators have been in their past five wins.
Stuck between a rock and a hard place. That's where opponents have found themselves when they face the Gators' rare combination of speed and toughness.
No, Vanderbilt didn't stand a chance in Saturday night's 42-14 loss. They rolled out of bed, put on their uniforms and stormed the field only to realize they were playing a road game in their own stadium.
Maybe it was the knowledge that their Commodores didn't stand a chance. Or maybe it was the knowledge that Kevin Costner and Modern West were in town for one night only. Whatever the cause, Saturday night's game was a road game for UF in name only.
UF doesn't play road games anymore. Each game seems to be a traveling show that's a cross between a pep rally and a party as the Gators make their way to the raves that will take place later in Atlanta and Miami.
And you know no one parties like the folks in Atlanta and Miami.
After the past five games, which have looked more like matchups between the Harlem Globetrotters and the Washington Generals, I'm ready to say the Gators are the best team in the country.
No team can match UF's combination of flash (Percy Harvin, Chris Rainey and Jeff Demps), toughness (Brandon Spikes) and swagger (the whole team).
They've made every phase of the game worth watching. I'm used to ignoring punts, but you can't with Brandon James returning them for touchdowns or Demps racing past everyone and blocking the kick.
It's not that the Gators are blowing teams out. College football teams have been running up the score for decades. It's the way it's being done.
UF is outplaying opponents in every phase of the game. What's a team to do if you can't stop the other guys from scoring, can't score yourself and can't even get a punt away to at least make the Gators break a sweat on their way to the end zone?
The answer is not much. I'm at the point where I think only Texas Tech and Texas can possibly take down UF.
Their offenses have the speed to match the Gators' defensive athleticism, and they're talented enough defensively to keep the Gators from scoring every time they have the ball.
Thankfully, Penn State got out of everyone's way and lost to Iowa so we could have a proper national championship game rather than the type of one-sided thrashing we've seen the past two seasons.
And as Urban Meyer stood with his arm around his wife, Shelley, with his players reveling in the fact that they had taken over Nashville, he smiled as the band played the fight song.
It was a smile filled with confidence. A confidence of what is sure to come (a berth in the Southeastern Conference championship game) and what could be (a second national championship in three years).
January 8, 2009.
That's the day all of that could come true.