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First Glance: Texas A&M visits Florida at The Swamp

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A night game at Ben Hill Griffin, sounds nice we guess

Florida Gators v Missouri Photo by Ed Zurga/Getty Images

What You Need to Know:

  • The Florida Gators are 3-2 overall; 3-1 in the SEC on season. They started with a loss on a neutral field against Michigan; had to cancel the game against Northern Colorado due to Irma, had three straight wins over Tennessee, Kentucky, and Vanderbilt, and is coming off a 17-16 loss to the LSU Tigers due to a missed extra point.
  • Florida knows how to rally. In the win over Tennessee, Florida withstood a fury of Volunteer touchdowns to be in position to win the game on a 63 yard Hail Mary as time expired. Florida was down 13 points in the fourth quarter of the Kentucky game, when it scored 14 unanswered points to take the lead and win. In the LSU game, Florida was down 14 in the fourth quarter and was able to score two touchdowns to tie the game pull within one because of a missed extra point with 1:45 remaining.
  • The Florida Gators present another challenging defense for Mazzone and Mond to crack. LSU was able to rack up 216 yards on the ground. Interestingly enough, LSU’s leading rusher by yardage was WR Russell Gage; while the leading pass catcher was RB Darrell Williams.
  • Texas A&M is 4-2 on the season after falling to Alabama 27-19 on Saturday. This is the second true road game of the season. We won’t talk about the first one.
  • Texas A&M fell to 56th in total offense after playing Alabama with 425 YPG (89th in passing YPG; 23rd in rushing YPG); while Florida is ranked 103rd in total offense with 347 YPG (95th in passing YPG; 75th in rushing YPG).
  • Florida’s SBNation site is Alligator Army. Crawl on over to learn more about the Gators.

Association of Former Students Events:

Betting Lines:

  • Florida opens as a -3.5 point favorite.
  • Florida is 2-3 against the spread; while A&M 3-3 ATS.
  • The Under has hit in 8 of the last 12 games for Florida, and in 8 of the last 11 games for Texas A&M.
  • A&M is 1-4 ATS in its last 5 games on the Road

Historical Notes:

  • Florida leads the all-time series 2-1. Florida won the last matchup in 2012. Muschamp is no longer their coach, and Johnny Manziel is no longer the Aggies’ QB.
  • Florida Coach Jim McElwain is 2-5 against the SEC West. To be fair, two of those games came against Alabama in the SEC Championship game.
  • The Gators and Aggies have shared the same interim head coach; Gary Darnell. Darnell took over the 1989 season for the Gators after Galen Hall was fired; and later coached A&M in the Alamo Bowl in 2007 after Dennis Franchione was fired.
  • Famous Florida Gator Alumni include Steve Spurrier, Jesse Palmer, Jenn Brown, Tim Tebow, Erin Edwards, inventor of the first digital computer John Atanasoff, Nobel Prize winner Marshall Nirenberg, Kelly Carrington, Bob Vila, SNLs Darrell Hammond, and many more. Leave any I missed in the comments.

Gators to Watch:

Tyrie Cleveland Sophomore WR

Cleveland is Florida’s leading receiver with 15 catches for 326 yards and 2 touchdowns. Cleveland is averaging over 21 yards per catch and is Florida’s go-to player when they need a big play. Cleveland was able to get behind the Tennessee secondary to catch the 63 yard game winning Hail Mary. He was ruled out of the LSU game for an ankle injury and his big play ability was missed by the Gators.

David Reese Sophomore LB

Reese is Florida’s leading tackler with 44 tackles. He also has 1.5 sacks and an interception. Reese had 12 tackles against LSU and has a nose for the football. A&M will have to account for Reese if Sumlin wants to keep the ground game going.

Media Blitz:

  • Venue: The Swamp, Ben Hill Griffin Stadium, Gainesville, Florida
  • Game Time: 6 pm CT
  • Channel: ESPN 2

Newsreel:

  • The Florida football team broke an NCAA record by scoring in its 366th straight game. The Gators were last shut out October 29, 1988 by Auburn. A&M has scored in 37 straight games for comparison and was last shut out October 18, 2014 against Alabama. Impressive run by the Gators that spans over 9 different Head Coaches/Interim coaches. Can you name them without looking?
  • Florida pays tribute to the late Tom Petty at the end of the 3rd quarter during the LSU game.
  • Junior PK Daniel LaCamera opened the game's scoring with a 52-yard field goal, which was the longest of his career and the first 50-yard plus boot by an Aggie since 2015.

Weather:

  • Forecast calls for partly cloudy with highs reaching 85 degrees.