Other than a Gators victory, here's what we want to see Saturday at Homecoming. All of these are the wishes of a 23 year old who just happens to have a blog. So leave your suggestions or insults about my level of intelligence in the comments. By the way, I nearly named this post "Rebuilding: Game One."
1. The Defense Fights Back.
Like a typical Florida fan, I usually think of defense last. But after the displays against Kentucky and Georgia, I'm more worried about Mike Pouncey on the defensive line than Maurkice Pouncey on the offensive line. One of the first things kids in youth football are taught is to fire off the ball and don't stand straight up. Hit the other guy in the chest before he hits you. To see UF's defensive line forget that and get pushed around against Georgia was disturbing. Unless UF starts smacking them in the mouth and making plays at the line Vandy will run the ball. And run the ball hard.
2. Earl Bennett is limited. At least as much as possible.
Yes, Vandy has the leading catch-man in the SEC this season and in the 75 years of Southeastern Conference football. And now he is coming to break hearts in Gainesville. If Bennett is kept below his season averages, seven catches for 80 yards per game, that will be fantastic. Of course that would mean...
3. K. Jackson, T. Joiner, and M. Wright help over the top.
After last week's display, I don't know if Jackson and Joiner understand how they either come over the top or cut off the route. Watching the guy catch the ball does not count. Granted, Pierre-Louis got owned on one TD. But you'd figure the two seniors would not get caught with their fingers up their noses. Wright gets a pass here because he's the true successor to Reg Nelson.
Where have you gone Reggie Nelson? Gator Nation turns its lonely eyes to you.
What's that you say Mrs. Meyer? Reggie has left and gone away. Hey, hey, hey. Hey, hey, hey.
4. Brandon James is Cold Blooded.
The first time I ever saw Brandon James was during summer practice in 2006. He made one move on a kickoff return and he was gone. That's why I'm on his bandwagon. I'm hoping for a 15 carry, 75 yard game, with a TD. And keep him on kicks too.
5. Tebow doesn't play the whole game due to a big lead.
Cam Newton has appeared in three games this season, and is the only QB not nicknamed White Rhino to play for UF. Hopefully Newton or Waggener starts the second half as UF leads 42-0. Meyer needs to find someway to protect Tebow and racing out to a huge lead will do that.
6. CI actually makes a damn catch.
If we're just hopping on the Brandon James Bandwagon, it's because we've been driving the Cornelius Ingram Bandwagon since last year. I've always been a big fan of whoever was the slot/TE of the moment for UF; Carlos Perez, Ben Troupe, and now CI. He's third on the team with 22 catches and leads with five receiving TDs. But the past few weeks, he's gotten careless. Instead of catching the ball away from his body (so he can see it), he lets it get in tight and drops it. (Try this at home. Throw a tennis ball in the air and catch it with your arm extended and with your arm just in front of your chest. Now imagine that it's a football from Tebow and you know what I mean.) If CI can get his hands out front, he'll be a special player.
7. The dream stays alive.
In a three-way or four-way tie, UF can win the SEC East. This week, Tennessee and Georgia play out of conference and UK is off. Arkansas hosts South Carolina, so the Gamecocks could be eliminated this week. As it is every year, the scoreboard watching begins the first week of November. And we can't worry about past losses. Let's just win out and let fate take care of the rest.