Here Are Answers To Your Florida Questions

Bob Redman of the Scout.com site FightinGators.com is answering questions from Crimson Tide fans this week, while BamaMag.com will be doing the same for the Florida fans.

Alabama opens Southeastern Conference play Saturday when the Crimson Tide (3-0) hosts Florida (2-0, including a triple overtime win over Kentucky last weekend) at 2:30 p.m. CDT Saturday at Bryant-Denny Stadium. CBS will televise the game.

Bob Redman put in 10 years of service working for the Florida football program both filming practices and games and later working as a quality control assistant breaking down opponents’ video and preparing self-scouting for the Florida offense. For the past 10 years he has worked for Scout covering the football and basketball teams and their respective recruiting efforts.

Earlier we asked Bama fans to provide some questions about the Gators for Bob to answer. Here is the result:

Are we going to see mostly passing or a balanced attack in a hurry up offense from Florida this week?

Florida will want to move a little faster and one big reason is they know it annoys Nick Saban. They kind of got away from it against Kentucky in the close game and they went to a personnel group that isn’t normal under the new coordinator Kurt Roper. I think that caused them to move a little slower. They want to be balanced, but I think Roper leans on the side of passing the ball a little more. We haven’t had a lot of game film to watch with the players he has here, so of that we are still learning.

Who is Florida’s most effective running back?

That is a great question and a little bit of a fight among Gators right now. The legacy sophomore Kelvin Taylor is NFL great Fred Taylor’s son and the crowd favorite while junior Matt Jones has started both games and in my opinion has showed a little more this season. The two are different style runners in that Taylor is more fit for the zone blocking that comes with the spread attack, but Florida does run some power blocking up front and did a lot against Kentucky and that is where Jones plays better.

Has Florida’s defense been disappointing this year, at least against Kentucky?

The secondary was lost a few times, especially the last drive of the first half and throughout the third quarter. They have only four cornerbacks that they are willing to play… two are red-shirting and nothing more. Two of the four corners are true freshmen in Jalen Tabor and Quincy Wilson. Both are very talented, but neither is trusted right now. Still, corner isn’t the issue; it is safety and NICKEL. They really have issues covering slot guys right now because the oldest corner should be the starting NICKEL, but has to play outside. The issues come from a few safeties and the NICKEL spot that gave up some deep plays against Kentucky. There is a lot of inexperience in Florida’s secondary; three of four starters are new. They will be fine, but they have to grow up.

How does Florida compare to Georgia and South Carolina this year?

I think most of us are trying to figure out how good they are. Looking at what has happened so far throughout the SEC, they certainly look like they have a chance against those two teams. The fact is Florida had South Carolina and Georgia both on the ropes last year when they were really struggling. They get Georgia in Jacksonville with a split crowd and South Carolina at home. They probably feel pretty good about their chances at this point.

What do fans think about the Florida coaching staff?

It is definitely mixed right now. I think most have moved on from wanting a complete change to most fans hoping it works out. A lot know that the best thing for the program is to have a successful year and not have to make a change. Some believe that will happen and some do not. It is a roller coaster and that percentage probably changed a great deal between a 65-0 win and a triple overtime win.

Is there a number of wins needed to avoid a change in head coaches this year?

This became a tougher question to answer when they cancelled the Idaho game. If the ‘magic number’ was eight before, does it go to seven now? Having been around the program and Athletic Director Jeremy Foley, he won’t place a win number on it. It will be about the direction the program is headed in his eyes. If they improve 4-5 games with the huge changes they made on offense and they recruit well, I don’t think a change will be made. If they aren’t playing for the championship, I do think the importance of getting there soon gets magnified.

It looks like Florida has such a tough schedule. Is it possible the Gators are improved, but have a worse record than last year?

I really don’t think there is any way it happens if they stay healthy. They did lose the ‘gimme’ game in Idaho and they would only be one win away from having the four from last year, but they do have Vanderbilt on the schedule and they do have Eastern Kentucky late in the year. That should be an easy four wins now. The secondary will improve dramatically with Muschamp at the helm and the offense is already so much better than a year ago when they lost four games by less than a touchdown. I think they can still easily double their win total from last year.

Was it a mistake for Florida to not reschedule the Idaho game for Oct. 25 and pick up another win for bowl negotiations?

As has been said around here since then, if that game is necessary to get into a bowl game, then there are bigger fish to fry with a six loss season. If you are talking in terms of a better bowl, I don’t think they lose a bid to any particular bowl because they are without a win over Idaho.

Wi-Fi in SEC stadiums is an issue. What is the situation in The Swamp?

They tried to make improvements this year and I am sure like anywhere else it depends on the carriers they use to make those improvements as to how well your cell phones and Wi-Fi work. We had complaints on our message board this week on this subject, so I am sure they will try and get even more done next year.

Does Florida’s triple overtime win over Kentucky help or hurt Florida confidence going to Tuscaloosa?

I think the game helped the team and really stifled the fan base that was starting to jump back on the wagon. Florida found themselves behind four times in the game and scored the very next series to either tie the game or pull ahead. It was something that was absolutely impossible for them to do a year ago when all of the injuries started mounting.

Do the Florida players refer to Coach Muschamp as “Boom”?

Nope. They call him Coach Muschamp.

Are you a fan of ‘Gator Boys’ and do you know Paul Bedard is a Yankee from New England?

I had to Google ‘Gator Boys’, so I would say I am not a fan.

Who grows a better beard: Jessie Palmer or Tim Tebow?

I am sure all the ladies would say Tebow, they seem to believe he does everything better than anyone that has ever been a Gator.

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