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Florida offensive lineman Nick Buchanan (66), offensive lineman Stone Forsythe (72) and offensive lineman Brett Heggie (61) set up for a play during the second half of an NCAA college football game against Miami Saturday, Aug. 24, 2019, in Orlando, Fla. (AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack)

Gators Offensive Line Making Strides

The Florida Gator offensive line returned just one starter from the 2018 season. Many wondered how the team would fare with such a young offensive line. Eight games into the season the Gators have made strides and proved that they are completely capable.

Success

Sep 17, 2016; Gainesville, FL, USA; Florida Gators offensive line coach Mike Summers talks with offensive lineman Brett Heggie (61) and teammates prior to the game against the North Texas Mean Green at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The Gators offensive line has had both moments of struggle and moments of success.

They have been pretty efficient at pass blocking. Left tackle Stone Forsythe, left guard Brett Heggie and Buchanan have protected quarterback Kyle Trask allowing the passing game to come alive for the Gators. Trask threw for 310 yards against the now No. 1 ranked team in the country, the LSU Tigers.

Struggle

Florida’s run game has not been what head coach Dan Mullen and what many fans hoped for.

Running back Lamical Perine is currently has 460 yards this season and is averaging 4.6 yards per carry. Last season, he was averaging 6.2 yards a carry. Overall, the offense is averaging 4.3 yards per rush attempt. According to offensive line coach John Hevesy, this is what he aims for. Of course, an explosive offense is welcome.

However, Coach Hevesy believes being effective is crucial. You have to be effective before you can be explosive.

A big part of playing on the offensive line is mental. Understanding the what the defense is doing is extremely important. Coach Hevesy’s line will have a challenge this weekend as they face the No. 8 ranked Georgia Bulldogs. Georgia has an elite defense that is currently the seventh best in the country. They lead the SEC in yards per game allowed and points per game allowed. The Bulldogs are allowing, on average, 10.6 points and 267 yards per game.

Hevesy is proud of the growth his group of guys have shown and has high expectations for the future.

About Maddie Schmidt

Maddie Schmidt's goal is to become a college football reporter. Be sure to check out her sports blog, mygamedaygal.com.

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