October 27, 2016

Florida Gators

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  Gators gear up for rival Georgia

There's plenty at stake for Florida when it faces rival Georgia on Saturday in Jacksonville.

Florida needs to win the rest of its SEC games to repeat as east division champions and earn another trip to the SEC title game in Atlanta. With a tough November schedule approaching, a win against the Bulldogs would be a critical start to try to achieve that goal.

McElwain said the Gators (5-1, 3-1 SEC) used the bye week following their 40-14 win over Missouri on Oct. 15 to improve in all phases of the game. The Gators gained 530 yards of offense against Missouri, but also turned the ball over four times.

"We're nowhere where we need to be, and yet, we're getting guys to realize how good they can be," Florida coach Jim McElwain said. "You can really be good if you allow yourself to be good."

There will be plenty of storylines entering the game, including the relationship between McElwain and first-year Georgia coach Kirby Smart. McElwain and Smart worked together at Alabama under Nick Saban from 2008-11. McElwain was Alabama's offensive coordinator while Smart was Alabama's defensive coordinator.

"His ability to see the game and put a plan together is really, really good," McElwain said.

McElwain is concerned about Georgia's offensive potential, led by junior running back Nick Chubb and freshman phenom quarterback Jacob Eason. A five-star recruit out of Lake Sevens, Wash, Eason was recruited by both Florida and Georgia and chose the Bulldogs.

"This guy in my opinion is the future of the SEC," McElwain said. "He's that good. His ability to push the ball downfield is something that's impressive.