How much will UF alter their defensive gameplan for Barnes or Johnson? It’s supposed to be a flexible, attacking defense, based on the 3-3-5 but really more of a 4-2-5.
Everyone on planet Earth will expect Barnes to hand the ball off a couple of times and then a short pass, as we try to assess what they’re doing up front and how they’re reading what we do. Does Lud counter expectations with a pass on 1st down, or bootleg or something nobody sees coming?
With Johnson, the expectation is he’ll use his legs, but if the Gators run blitz or focus on not letting him beat them on the ground, does he strike to Vele / Parks / Pittman or King downfield? Flow right, pass back to the left?
If we get the flip, Scalley’s on stage, but if they do & defer… do we come out swinging? Or like a heavyweight fight, the first couple of possessions are a sizing up operation?
Put a different way - do we have enough confidence in our defense to be aggressive on offense? I kind of sense that with Cam out, there might be less pressure for us to get the win, so maybe we’ll see Sugar Bowl Whitt & Ludwig. They’ve been preparing for this since spring, according to Lud.
I expect Lud to try not to be predictable. Whomever plays QB will have to throw the ball to achieve this and I think the coaches will be more comfortable with Barnes passing.
As Whitt has made it clear that Johnson will play, I hope they don’t bring him in merely for obvious rushing plays. This does not work well when the defense is talented because everyone knows the run is coming and the box is stacked. If Johnson is really close to being QB2 then he must throw the ball effectively.
I never played football and I’m not a terribly good striker, but, when someone is striking and kicking me; means I have to move, strike back or effect a takedown.
I love seeing a defense swim in and swarm an opponent. Sometimes, I feel like we present a very physical defensive front, but we sit pat and good opponents get comfy.
Not a lot of new, starting QB’s want our D swarming in their face - right away. Our smaller, pocket stadium is steep and LOUD with a sold-out capacity crowd.
We should play them at home the way we played Bama (next door to Alabama)
I would love to see a blowout. As unlikely as it is, I can’t help but get goosebumps thinking about a sugar bowl style game plan from WhittLug just pouring it on and running the score up to send a shockwave through CFB. Just saying, would be nice to send a little trickle of fear down the rest of our schedule when they see a 44±10 smack down.
As far as the whole Bryson /Johnson situation, I really liked the opinion of Scott Mitchell on his show talking about how, we know what Barnes is capable of. He would start NJ and let him loose and show what he can do. Who knows, maybe this could be about to give us a glimpse of what a possible NJ Era incoming would look like. I’d love to see NJ step out into the field before Barnes, and just take the reins like he owns the damn place and show he can be the guy that gives that Rising spark when Rising is not there. But Barnes has proven himself more than capable of stepping on and leading the offense, albeit without the same command Rising has, but gets the job done. And let’s be honest, at the end of the day, blowout or not, to get our first W over the Swamp, no matter who’s at the helm, would feel pretty damn good.
Forgot to include my personal prediction.
Conservative me: 38-27 Utah W
Wishful/hopefully closer to : 52+ - 17 Utah dominates
I like the Barnes with more of the snaps and some packages and/or a series or few for NJ to run to change it up. Barnes brings some stability. Yet, lest I say it, that’s what Brewer was supposed to do until Rising was healed up last time? Key difference is Bryson has been in the program a while, not coming in new - the team appreciates him and his work. NJ brings a higher risk/reward proposition.
Too bad Brandon Rose got a lacerated liver - he was leading both Barnes and NJ during camp according to some reports. So without that, we could have seen a glimpse of a possible Rose/Johnson duo next year.
If Barnes plays a clean game and the defense gets pressure on Mertz I like our chances. I think we’ll see some NJ packages today but this game will mostly be on Barnes. Barnes can move the ball with his feet so FLA will have to respect that. This will be a close one.
It will be interesting to see what Florida does the first time NJ lines up to take a snap. Do they load the box and dare him to throw? To they run a gap read and fill when he takes off running? Does he run, or fake the run and pass the ball?
Honestly I think they have to treat NJ as a run threat out of the gate, at least that’s what they will expect. I’d love to see lud get crazy though and let him get it in the air.
As far as the report of rising playing goes… I’d LOVE to see it because it’s clear rising wants to bury them… but all I can say is, I hope that if that call is made, there is zero doubt of his being ready. I’d hate to see him rush it and end up blowing out the knee to end his season already…
I agree and could see the coaches wanting to do this- the question is whether our run game is good enough to effectively move the ball consistently with Florida knowing we are going to rely heavily on the run game.
I think we will have to pass the ball to win this game. 200 yards would do it. Less than that and Florida will stack the box making our running game much less threatening.