4 Downs: Florida vs. Tennessee

Gators coming off huge blowout win over Colorado State


JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The annual September matchup between Florida and Tennessee doesn't have the same meaning it carried back when the game usually decided the SEC East title. Florida (2-1, 0-1 SEC) is trying to avoid its first 0-2 start to SEC play since 1986. Tennessee (2-1, 0-0) hasn't won an SEC game since 2016.

1ST Down: The Details

Matchup: Florida (2-1) at Tennessee (2-1)
When: 7:00 p.m. Saturday 
Where: Neyland Stadium – Knoxville, Tenn. 
TV/radio: ESPN/WFXJ-AM 930

2ND Down: Preaching patience

Florida's Feleipe Franks got booed at home last week after opening 0 for 6 with an interception. He recovered to complete 8 of his next 9 in the win over Colorado State. Franks also threw his eighth and ninth touchdowns of the season, matching his total from all of 2017.

After the game Gators head coach Dan Mullen asked for fans and the media to be patient with Franks because it was only his third game in Mullen’s offensive system. 

Last year, Franks hooked up with Tyrie Cleveland on a 63-yard Hail Mary to beat the Volunteers 26-20 in Gainesville, but he's 1-3 as a starter away from home.

3rd Down: Gators’ special teams

Florida already has blocked three kicks or punts this year, a remarkable turnaround for a team that had a total of four blocks from 2013-17. Florida scored two special-teams touchdowns last week in a 48-10 rout of Colorado State.

4th Down: Facts and Figures

- Either Florida or Tennessee won the SEC East each year from 1992 to 2001. This matchup featured two ranked teams every year from 1990-2007.

- Florida has played in the SEC championship just twice over the last eight seasons (in 2015 and 2016). Tennessee hasn't reached the SEC championship game since 2007

For more Florida football coverage, check out Gators Breakdown