Are we really that far behind Florida?

#1

De La Cloobs

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#1
Screw Florida

Last year’s loss to UF was tough, mainly because it’s UF but also by how badly we got beaten. Going into that game though, everyone thought it would be much closer.

We were fresh off arguably the worst season in UT football history. It was our 3rd game. We had 6 turnovers... 6. We had two true freshmen DBs that didn’t hit their stride until later in the season. Guarantano got injured in the second half. The entire team was under coached in the Butch years particularly with strength and conditioning. Pruitt didn’t seem to have control of the team like an established/seasoned head coach normally would because I think the team as a whole seemed liked it was still trying to figure out its identity under the too fresh of a coaching change.

With where we are now, and assuming Pruitt and this team has found their identity, I don’t think the Florida loss will be a blowout this year. I’m not saying we win, but I wouldn’t be surprised if we pull it off.

Most of our roster is returning. Everyone has a year of the new system under their belt. The new strength and conditioning will hopefully pay off big for our boys. I believe our coaching staff is top notch and Pruitt wants to dominate; that mentality will spread to the players. Mullen doesn’t seem to have a good relationship with his team (his 2019 class has been a disaster and may continue). And doesn’t Tennessee return more starters than Florida?

I believe most of our shortcomings since last year have been remedied. What people thought would be a close game last year will end up being this year if I had to guess.

Outside of battling in the swamp this year, where does Florida outmatch us? Seriously, enlighten me because I would like to know.
 
#2

1vol8

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#2
Screw Florida

Last year’s loss to UF was tough, mainly because it’s UF but also by how badly we got beaten. Going into that game though, everyone thought it would be much closer.

We were fresh off arguably the worst season in UT football history. It was our 3rd game. We had 6 turnovers... 6. We had two true freshmen DBs that didn’t hit their stride until later in the season. Guarantano got injured in the second half. The entire team was under coached in the Butch years particularly with strength and conditioning. Pruitt didn’t seem to have control of the team like an established/seasoned head coach normally would because I think the team as a whole seemed liked it was still trying to figure out its identity under the too fresh of a coaching change.

With where we are now, and assuming Pruitt and this team has found their identity, I don’t think the Florida loss will be a blowout this year. I’m not saying we win, but I wouldn’t be surprised if we pull it off.

Most of our roster is returning. Everyone has a year of the new system under their belt. The new strength and conditioning will hopefully pay off big for our boys. I believe our coaching staff is top notch and Pruitt wants to dominate; that mentality will spread to the players. Mullen doesn’t seem to have a good relationship with his team (his 2019 class has been a disaster and may continue). And doesn’t Tennessee return more starters than Florida?

I believe most of our shortcomings since last year have been remedied. What people thought would be a close game last year will end up being this year if I had to guess.

Outside of battling in the swamp this year, where does Florida outmatch us? Seriously, enlighten me because I would like to know.
I personally can’t argue any point you made. Although there are those that feel we got dominated physically last year I see it differently. I seen a team that matched up physically but made too many mistakes to beat OURSELVES. I think we win or lose by 7 or less this season without the mental mistakes or turnovers.
 
#4

PhoenixAZVol

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#4
To answer your question, no, I don’t feel that we are too far behind Florida but the way this series has gone it really doesn’t seem to matter how our talent compares to theirs. We always seem to find a way to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory (can’t remember the saying but we basically self destruct every year). Last years game was really the norm: a complete meltdown with a comedy of errors. I’m not saying that we should have won, but the game should have been more competitive minus all of the self inflicted wounds. No different than most of the games back in the Fulmer era. We always find a way to lose when our talent level is close, the same or even better. Seeing the same result for most of the past 30 years against this one team does not give me much hope.
 
#5

De La Cloobs

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#5
It honestly makes me wonder what our OL would have looked like if the talent had not been so mismanaged and the players had been given a proper Strength and conditioning program the years prior. Hopefully the new talent being brought in will help the O-line play. I also think the addition of Chaney will help.

I firmly believe that Florida game looks different had we played them later in the season. They got beat by UK and we trounced them. Gotta love college ball
 
#6

De La Cloobs

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#6
What I really want to know is where Florida outmatches us. It’s been said, not just on this board but by many, that the talent level at Tennessee is LOW right now. If that isn’t the case, where does UF have us beat?
 
#9

1vol8

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#9
What I really want to know is where Florida outmatches us. It’s been said, not just on this board but by many, that the talent level at Tennessee is LOW right now. If that isn’t the case, where does UF have us beat?
They don’t have the better qb. They don’t have the better o line anymore. I would give us a slight edge at TE. RB about equal. I would give them the edge at d line but our LBs I think are better. Toss up at corner and safety’s. Tennessee I feel by far has the better coaching staff but UF has more experience at the head. BUT...I think Pruitt learned a lot last season and will let Chaney deal with the O and he’ll listen to Ansleys input. I seriously think we can win.
 
#11

KeyVol14

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#11
They don’t have the better qb. They don’t have the better o line anymore. I would give us a slight edge at TE. RB about equal. I would give them the edge at d line but our LBs I think are better. Toss up at corner and safety’s. Tennessee I feel by far has the better coaching staff but UF has more experience at the head. BUT...I think Pruitt learned a lot last season and will let Chaney deal with the O and he’ll listen to Ansleys input. I seriously think we can win.
Well only thing I disagree with is the o line. They have the better group there until we can show improvement
 
#15

Woke

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#15
They don’t have the better qb. They don’t have the better o line anymore. I would give us a slight edge at TE. RB about equal. I would give them the edge at d line but our LBs I think are better. Toss up at corner and safety’s. Tennessee I feel by far has the better coaching staff but UF has more experience at the head. BUT...I think Pruitt learned a lot last season and will let Chaney deal with the O and he’ll listen to Ansleys input. I seriously think we can win.
Eh...don’t disagree with anything you said but it’s TEAMS that win or lose not position matchups. Mullen is just at home at UF and his advantage is he doesn’t have to recreate the wheel there like Pruitt has to with us.

Mullen inherited a familiar culture with players who are a better fit with what he wants to do. He can overachieve on O while piecing together a D.

Pruitt inherited a soft losing culture with a lot of diverse athletes. He has to piece together an aggressive physical D AND a winning team mindset while letting Chaney piece together a productive O. Pruitt and Chaney have to recruit and develop the right players for their schemes going forward and quickly develop the new players they’ve brought in. So there are a lot more pieces to put together on our side.

That’s what 2019 is for. We’ll be basically where UF is now in 2020 imo. From that point on the teams should be pretty even going forward if things continue as they’re going.

Can we beat UF in 2019? Absolutely. Will the game be highly competitive? I’d be willing to bet on it. Don’t think we’ll get curb stomped. Are we going to win? Possible but unlikely in 2019.
 
#18

Orange defense

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#18
I think Cheney, Pruitt, and the rest of the coaching staff will get together and think about those six turnovers from last year. I can see where they can come up with something to keep Florida’s defense off balance early. If you think back to what happened in several games, including Florida on the 1st and 2nd plays Guarantano got sacked, or the running back lost a lot of yards. I think we find a way to stop that more this year, with Cheney calling the plays. He will have a game plan with 25 or 50 plays script ready to go. I say this year alone defenses will have to respect our offense more, and they won’t be able to do what they’ve done in the past few years. I just don’t see defensive coordinators rushing a lot, because I think our offense will be capable of beating the rush more this year. I say sit back and enjoy our offense, because I have a feeling that it is going to be fun to watch.💥💥💥💥💥💥💥💥😍
 
#20
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#20
To answer your question, no, I don’t feel that we are too far behind Florida but the way this series has gone it really doesn’t seem to matter how our talent compares to theirs. We always seem to find a way to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory (can’t remember the saying but we basically self destruct every year). Last years game was really the norm: a complete meltdown with a comedy of errors. I’m not saying that we should have won, but the game should have been more competitive minus all of the self inflicted wounds. No different than most of the games back in the Fulmer era. We always find a way to lose when our talent level is close, the same or even better. Seeing the same result for most of the past 30 years against this one team does not give me much hope.
This is so true. We aren't that far behind UF in terms of talent/recruiting. They've also been losing a lot of depth to the NFL. But what UF has us on is that they have developed their players albeit mostly on defense.

But the most important aspect as you said is our own self infliction. No matter the talent level gap, we find a way to blow it. It's a mental stigma. I would compare it to UK against us. Until Dooley and Jones, UK would find a way to lose or we would find luck to beat their best performances.
 
#21

08Vol

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#21
UF is better in 4 key spots: offensive line, defensive line, coaching, and culture/attitude. We had a player refuse to go on the field DURING THE GAME and quit. What kind of culture is that where a player quits the team during the middle of a rivalry game? Oh and then the coach lets him rejoin the team the next week.
 
#22

PowerT83

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#22
We're not that far behind Florida. Considering we are coming of the worst decade in UT football, Florida didn't get much separation.

Florida was developing a losing mentality similar to ours until last year. Confidence goes a long way, until the Big Orange figure out that Florida is nothing special and lose the losing mentality we will continue to find ways to lose games we have no business losing.
 

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