Game preview: Florida vs. Georgia

October, 26, 2012
10/26/12
8:00
AM ET
No. 2 Florida (7-0, 6-0 SEC) vs. No. 10 Georgia (6-1, 4-1)
Saturday, 3:30 p.m. ET
EverBank Field, Jacksonville, Fla.
CBS

Gators to watch

RB Mike Gillislee: Since running for 146 yards against LSU, Gillislee has totaled just 104 yards in UF’s victories over Vanderbilt and South Carolina. Teams are making it their top priority to stop Gillislee, so it’s going to be tough going again against the Bulldogs on Saturday.

[+] EnlargeKyle Christy
AP Photo/John RaouxSophomore punter Kyle Christy has been one of the Gators' best players this season.
P Kyle Christy: He leads the nation in punting average (47.9 yards per punt) and is coming off a game in which he averaged a school-record 54.3 yards on seven punts. Christy’s ability to flip the field, whether that’s getting Florida out of trouble or pinning opponents deep, is critical to UF’s success.

CB Loucheiz Purifoy: Purifoy is UF’s most physical corner and will present problems for Georgia WRs Tavarres King and Malcolm Mitchell. Purifoy is also a force on special teams as a gunner on punts and on kickoff coverage. He forced two fumbles against South Carolina last week -- one on defense on a blitz and another on a kickoff return. Purifoy is also spending some time at WR, too.

Bulldogs to watch

LB Jarvis Jones: Jones wrecked the Gators in last season’s meeting, recording four sacks and a forced fumble in the Bulldogs’ 24-20 victory. He’s dealing with an ankle injury that kept him out of last week’s victory over Kentucky. Georgia coach Mark Richt said Jones should play. How much will his ankle affect him, though?

RB Todd Gurley: He’s one half of the “Gurshall” combination (Gurley and Keith Marshall) that has rushed for 1,110 yards and 14 touchdowns. He’s the bigger of the two backs (6-foot-1, 218 pounds) but also presents a problem in the return game. He’s averaging 34.7 yards on seven kickoff returns and has a 100-yard return for a touchdown.

QB Aaron Murray: He led the Bulldogs to a come-from-behind victory last season by hitting a pair of fourth-down touchdown passes, but he also completed less than 50 percent of his passes. In two games against the Gators, Murray has thrown for five touchdowns and four interceptions (three in 2010) and has completed 46.5 percent of his passes (33-for-71).

Key matchup

Florida OT Xavier Nixon vs. Georgia LB Jarvis Jones

Jones beat Nixon for three sacks in last year’s game. He overpowered Nixon once and blew by him on two other sacks. Nixon has got to be better with his footwork to handle Jones’ speed, but he’ll have a better chance of dealing with Jones if Jones’ ankle injury limits his mobility at all.

By the numbers

0 -- Number of victories for Will Muschamp in Jacksonville. He went 0-4 as a player for Georgia (1991-94) and lost last year’s meeting as UF head coach. Muschamp did post a 2-3 record against the Bulldogs while he was defensive coordinator at Auburn and LSU.

22 -- Number of years since Georgia has won back-to-back games in the series. The Bulldogs last did it when they won three in a row from 1987-89.

27 -- National ranking in pass efficiency for Florida QB Jeff Driskel (147.59) despite averaging only 132.7 yards per game.

Mike DiRocco | email

ESPN Jacksonville Jaguars reporter

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