The Florida Gators stay in the win column after a 38-24 home win over the South Carolina Gamecocks. The Florida offense continues to play at a high level while the defense has not lived up to the hype yet. We have three takeaways from the Florida-South Carolina game.
The Kyle Trask and Kyle Pitts connection is still there after another big performance against the Gamecocks defense. Trask has also had some production coming from other receivers like Kadarius Toney and Trent Whittemore.
While the offense was outstanding, the Gators defense continues to struggle. The defense is having some troubles with the ground game and the secondary isn’t playing to level Florida’s defenses usually play at.
The Gators have their first true test this Saturday in College Station against the Texas A&M Aggies. The defense needs to figure it out and there’s no better time than the present. Here are three takeaways from the Florida Gators win over the Ole Miss Rebels.
Three Takeaways From Florida-South Carolina Game
Kyle & Kyle Associates is the real deal
In their first two games, the Gators offense has been led by their redshirt-senior quarterback, Kyle Trask, and star tight end, Kyle Pitts. Trask has had one of the best starts in college football with 684 passing yards, ten touchdowns and a 71.8 completion percentage. Pitts has also been incredible in his two games of the 2020 season. Pitts has recorded 12 receptions for 227 yards and six touchdowns. He already has more touchdowns in eight quarters than he did in all of last season.
With these two already off to amazing starts, it elevates Florida’s offense and takes the pressure off their rushing attack, offensive line and other receivers. The Gators offense has lots of weapons but none is as much of a mistakes as Pitts.
Florida Defense Becoming A Problem
Todd Grantham and the Florida defense did not have the type of game many were expecting. The South Carolina offense led by graduate transfer quarterback Collin Hill didn’t have many issues with the Gators defense.
They ran the ball for over 100 yards and their starting running back, Kevin Harris, had two total touchdowns in the game. Senior wide receiver Shi Smith also gave the Gators defense fits. He had 12 catches for 85 yards and a touchdown.
The Gators defense needs to make some changes in personnel with some of their players. They are some players having issues with knowing where they need to be and tackling. Some players like Donovan Stiner and Amari Burney have been liabilities in the first two games.
If neither of them can make the adjustments, Grantham might need to make some changes and go with some other players. Linebacker James Houston IV made some plays including sack when he played. He played a little faster and more aggressive than Burney in the win over South Carolina.
If the secondary needs to make changes, Trey Dean probably needs to start over Stiner. If their also needs to be a change at nickel, sophomore Jaydon Hill and freshman Tre’Vez Johnson should be option. Both played well when called upon last Saturday.
Freshmen Making An Impact
In the South Carolina game, Florida fans got to see some of their freshmen make plays in meaningful downs. Both offense and defense had their freshmen contribute in their win over the Gamecocks.
On offense, redshirt-freshman and Gainesville native Trent Whittemore had his best game of his colligate career. Whittemore had two big catches in the Gators home opener. His first catch was on a 50-50 ball that he went up and caught in double coverage over the middle. The second catch was on a touchdown in which he was wide open in the back of the end zone.
True freshman Xzavier Henderson also made some plays. Henderson only had one reception in the game but it went for 23 yards. He almost had another explosive play but was interfered with and could catch Trask’s pass.
On defense, former five-star defensive tackle Gervon Dexter recorded two tackles. In the before, Dexter had a tackle for loss and interception. Dexter has definitely made an impact with Kyree Campbell out. Defensive back Tre’Vez Johnson broke up a pass in the end zone late in the game and could get some more playing time as a nickel.