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Florida vs. Missouri, Game Thread: Gators seeking happy Homecoming

Florida faces an eternal thorn in its side — and one week after nettlesome Missouri suffered a crushing loss, too.

Syndication: Gator Sports Alan Youngblood / USA TODAY NETWORK

Here are five thoughts in no particular order about Florida’s game against Missouri on this Homecoming Saturday:

  • Noon games are really, really high on the list of things I dislike about college football, and I think that has a lot to do with covering college football being my job and being a nocturnal person more generally. I prefer to be up — rarely out, but usually up — on Friday nights, sometimes well past midnight. Even though I’m almost never drinking or doing something particularly tiring on those Fridays, waking up early enough on a Saturday to either run errands or prep for nooners is almost always a recipe for a low-energy, high-fatigue day for me. (This morning, I ran errands — and then wanted to take a nap that I knew I couldn’t really afford.) There will also always be nooners, because TV networks will always need to rotate even Alabama into the noon slot, and feeling the dread of them every fall cancels out some of the value of having a full afternoon and evening available after them. At least this is the last one for a while.
  • Missouri played the exact sort of game that I would find most unforgivable from Florida last Saturday: As a massive underdog, the Tigers had a chance to upset Georgia, but ended up gripping their slim and slipping lead with both hands and forgetting the principles that got them that lead in the first place. And this was so obviously the outcome of that particular approach that people were calling the collapse happening in that way from the second quarter onward. Squandering opportunities to do something awesome is bad!
  • I really don’t think there will ever be a fear factor to Mizzou for me. I can certainly appreciate that the Tigers have given Florida fits and that they have often been decent or better, but there’s just not anything for me to be scared of or meaningfully worried about in a program that feels like it can make the SEC Championship Game once a decade if it catches some breaks. Kentucky — which is Kentucky — has at least established an identity that commands more respect; Missouri just seems to capitalize on Florida beating Florida. If Missouri wins today, I imagine it will probably feel like a home invasion in which the gun-toting defender of his castle manages to shoot not the intruder but the beloved family dog — this is, after all, how most of Florida’s losses to Missouri have felt.
  • Anthony Richardson playing a good game at home against an SEC opponent hasn’t happened yet. I would like for that to happen today.
  • As always: Go Gators.