Sunday, September 29, 2013
What we learned: Week 5
By Greg Ostendorf
The streak continues. Florida made it 27 wins in a row over Kentucky on Saturday, the longest active streak for consecutive wins by one team over a major opponent in an uninterrupted series. Here are three things we learned from the Gators’ 24-7 victory:
Don’t forget about Florida: Everybody just assumes Georgia will win the SEC East after its win against LSU on Saturday, but don’t forget about Florida. The Gators have yet to lose in conference, and although the offense has struggled at times, the defense is good enough to keep them in most games. The real test will come in two weeks when the Gators visit LSU. If quarterback Tyler Murphy continues to improve and the offense plays well, it’s not out of the question for them to win in Death Valley. Florida was a trendy pick to win the East in the preseason, but people gave up when Jeff Driskel went down. The Gators might be better off without him.
Matt Jones is healthy again: Before the Tennessee game, Jones came out and said he was ready to put this Florida team on his back. He only received 12 carries and rushed for 49 yards and a touchdown. Evidently, the staff felt he needed one more week before it was ready to give him a full workload. Against Kentucky, he got 28 carries and rushed for a career-high 176 yards with a touchdown. It was the first time he’d ever rushed for over 100 yards in a game. It’s clear that the sophomore running back is back from a viral infection that kept him out of fall camp and forced him to miss the first game. He’s back and ready to carry the offense.
The SEC’s best CB might be a freshman: All Vernon Hargreaves III does is make plays. It’s easy to forget he’s just a freshman. In just his fourth college game, the Florida cornerback locked down his side of the field and pulled down another interception, his third in four games. The pick came in his own end zone, ending one of the few opportunities Kentucky had to score. He’s making a case for the best cornerback in the league, and he might be the best player on the Gators’ defense. He’ll be tested in two weeks when he has to go against LSU wide receivers Odell Beckham and Jarvis Landry.