Crimson Tide, Gators clash againPublished 7:55am Saturday, October 2, 2010
Alabama and Florida will meet today in what is becoming one of the best rivalries in college football.
Although the Southeastern Conference title and a trip to the national championship game is not on the line this time there is still quite a bit of intrigue surrounding this game.
The Crimson Tide routed its way through the first three opponents on its schedule before having to rally from a 10-point deficit at halftime to beat Arkansas last week.
Florida struggled with its first three opponents before blowing out a previously undefeated Kentucky squad last week.
The Gator offense looked average at best until last week’s game when true freshman Trey Burton scored six touchdowns to propel Florida to a convincing win.
Running back Jeff Demps leads the Gators with 367 rushing yards while Deonte Thompson leads the Florida receivers with 18 catches for 248 yards.
Trying to stop the Florida attack is an Alabama defense that Arkansas was able to exploit for some big plays last week. Despite giving up 20 points to the Razorbacks, the Crimson Tide has allowed only 39 points through four games.
Robert Lester recorded a pair of interceptions last week for Alabama to spark the rally. He now has four picks on the season to lead the SEC.
Dont’a Hightower and Mark Barron are tied for the team lead with 20 tackles each.
If the Florida defense struggles like it did early in the season, it could be a long game for the Gators. Alabama is averaging 511.75 yards of total offense per game.
Mark Ingram and Trent Richardson remain a tough running back combo for opposing defensive coordinators to scheme against and Julio Jones’ 20 receptions for 303 yards so far this season keeps defenses honest.
Greg McElroy has completed 70.9 percent of his passes for 899 yards, seven touchdowns and three interceptions to rank seventh nationally in passing efficiency.
During Florida’s two previous SEC games this season the Gators’ opponent has come into the game with the league’s leading rusher, but Florida has held those teams to less than 100 rushing yards.
Jonathan Bostick has three interceptions while Jelani Jenkins has 23 tackles, two tackles for a loss and one sack.
Ahmad Black leads the Gators with 30 tackles.