The Gator football program can complete one of its most successful seasons in history tonight with a win against Louisville in the Sugar Bowl.
Coverage on ESPN Radio 850/900 and Country 103-7 The Gator starts with the First And Ten pregame show at 5:30pm.
Florida is 11-1 on the year and could be the nation’s number two team with a win tonight against former UF defensive coordinator Charlie Strong’s Cardinals. Louisville is 10-2 and the champions of the Big East but Florida is a heavy favorite in the game.
For Florida on defense, job one is to slow down talented quarterback Teddy Bridgewater who is now fully healthy after being injured late in the year. Bridgewater has thrown for almost 3,500 yards and 25 touchdowns and he also makes plays with his feet. The Cardinals have two nice backs in Jeremy Wright and Senorise Perry who have combined to run for over 1500 yards this season.
Louisville does not have a dynamic receiver for Bridgewater but three receivers have caught 38, 42 and 48 balls, led by Damian Copeland. DeVante Parker has big play capability however as he averages nearly 19 yards a reception.
On defense, Strong’s trademark, the Cardinals are good but not great. While Strong will play an aggressive style with blitzes from different angles and locations, the results have been mixed. The Cardinals give up more than 150 yards a game on the ground, an area that Strong puts great emphasis on, stopping the run first to make a team one dimensional.
Adrian Bushell, a former Gator, is listed as a starter at one corner spot and he also can return kicks and punts. A lot of the players on the Louisville roster are from Florida.
As for the Gators, the attitude seems to have been excellent in preparation for this game; no late night partying on Bourbon Street but more of a business like approach to the game to end what has been a nice season on a positive note. Florida is totally healthy for the game as well.