PREVIEW: LSU-Florida Breakdown

Comign into Saturday's shwodown, no doubt the offense is the strength of the Florida Gators while the LSU Tigers boast a suffocating defense. Here we break down which one will give as the top-ranked Tigers and the 9th-ranked Gators go head to head on Saturday.

LSU rushing offense vs. Florida rushing defense

Judging from the stat book, LSU has done a good job of running the football this season. Through five games, the Tigers are averaging 223 yards per game on the ground, good enough for 16th nationally. But last Saturday's performance against Tulane left something to be desired. In the first half, the Tigers were held to minus-11 yards on the ground. In the last two quarters, though, LSU earned 145 yards on the ground finishing with 134 total. The offensive line didn't play well, was plagued with motion penalties and gave up six sacks. That has to improve against a Florida defense that gives up only 63.4 yards per game.

Advantage: Florida



LSU passing offense vs. Florida passing defense

While Florida might be good facing the run, it is just the opposite against the pass. The Gators' secondary is allowing 247 yards per game through the air, that's 80th in the nation. Matt Flynn might have gotten off to a rough start versus Tulane, but he finished 16 of 29 for 258 yards. In the second half, Flynn was 8 of 11 for 120 yards. Ryan Perrilloux has gotten lots of snaps over the last two weeks under center, but he has thrown only a handful of passes. Could Les Miles be saving Perrilloux's rocket arm for the Gators' porous secondary?

Advantage: LSU



Florida rushing offense vs. LSU rushing defense

Unstoppable force meet the immovable object. Something has to give here. Florida's offense is quite explosive, but it all starts with quarterback Tim Tebow. The Gators offense is simple, give the ball to the 6-3, 235-pound quarterback and let him work his magic. Tebow likes to run designed running plays, but he has yet to face a rushing defense like the one he will meet Saturday. Tebow ran 19 times for a hard-earned 75 yards against Auburn, but LSU is giving up only 39 yards per game on the ground. If Tebow intends to play his game, he'll definitely feel it next Sunday morning back in Gainesville.

Advantage: LSU



Florida passing offense vs. LSU passing defense

Many people are fooled by Tebow thinking he is a big bruising running quarterback that can't throw the ball. That is the farthest thing for the truth. Tebow has complete 85 of 122 passes for 1,297 yards and 11 touchdowns. Plus, he has thrown only two interceptions. He will, however, be going against a defense that is allowing only 135 yards per game through the air, that ranks fifth nationally. No quarterback that has started the game this season versus LSU's defense has finished the game. Also, the Gators are No. 1 in the nation in sacks allowed giving .40 per game. LSU is fifth in the nation in sacking the quarterback logging almost four per game. Hmmmm….

Advantage: Even



LSU special teams vs. Florida special teams

"Punt ugly" was beginning to look downright attractive after the first three games. But South Carolina and Tulane have put monstrous pressure on LSU punter Patrick Fisher and he has been fortunate not to have a punt fully blocked. Colt David is still very solid on field goals and PATs and LSU kickoff coverage has improved. Florida kicker Joey Ijjas hasn't missed an extra point and is 4 of 6 on field goals. Punter Chas Henry is averaging only 36.9 yards per punt, but his uncanny ability to produce amazing hangtime has resulted in no punt returns by an opponent this season.

Advantage: Even

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