The 2013 Gator football season was one of the most disappointing in recent memory as the team went 4-8 and ended the year on a seven game losing streak. Now the 2014 campaign lies just a month away presenting an opportunity for the Gators to earn back the respect of both the SEC and the entire country. This is a make or break season for fourth year head coach Will Muschamp, who will most likely be out of a job if the Gators underachieve for the second year in a row.
Many believe the Gators will not win the SEC in 2014 and they have a right to believe so. However, I believe the Gators will be significantly better this season.
The 2014 Gator football schedule is as follows (*Bold* denotes a home game):
Vs. Eastern Michigan
Vs. South Carolina
Vs. Eastern Kentucky
At Florida State
The following are my breakdowns and predictions for the first five games of the 2014 season:
Idaho: The Idaho Vandals went 1-11 last year. This is a good confidence game for the Gators as they look to snap a seven game losing streak. Game time is 7 p.m., which is absolutely awesome because it gets deathly hot in The Swamp early in the football season. The Gators will win 52-14, making them 1-0 on the season.
Eastern Michigan: The Eastern Michigan Eagles went 2-10 last year. This game is at 4 p.m. and will be the first Gator football game televised on the brand new SEC Network. Again, I love the late game time and believe the Gators will win 48-6. They will be sitting pretty at 2-0 heading into SEC play.
Kentucky: The Kentucky Wildcats followed Eastern Michigan’s lead and went 2-10 last year as well. They went 0-8 in SEC play, which included a 24-7 home loss to the Gators. This will be the third straight late game in The Swamp as game time is 7 p.m. This game will also be on the SEC Network. The Wildcats have not beaten Florida since 1986, and things will not change as Florida wins it 55-10. Florida will have nice start out of the gate at 3-0
Alabama: Here comes Florida’s first real test of the season. The Tide were ranked #1 for most of last year until the Kick Six in the Auburn game knocked them out of the National Championship race. Having won two of the last three National Championships, Alabama at home will be a tough task for the Gators on the road. The Gators lose this one 35-17 to go 3-1 on the season.
Tennessee: After a bye to recover from the ‘Bama loss, the Gators head to Knoxville to take on rival Tennessee. The Volunteers went 5-7 last year, which included a 31-17 loss to the Gators in The Swamp. It was in that game that quarterback Jeff Driskel broke his leg and missed the rest of the season. With Driskel hopefully still behind center at this point in the season, the Gators should cruise to their tenth consecutive win over the Vols by a score of 27-21. They will be 4-1, equaling last year’s win total.
Tune in next week for my predictions on the LSU, Missouri, Georgia, Vanderbilt, South Carolina, Eastern Kentucky, and Florida State games!
"Florida Gators Orange & Blue Debut Spring 2013" by stu