Florida Gators vs. Vanderbilt Commodores Preview

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Vanderbilt Commodores
File photo. Florida Gators quarterback Feleipe Franks (13) throws a pass during the game between the LSU Tigers and the Florida Gators on October 6, 2018 at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium at Florida Field in Gainesville, Fl. (Photo by David Rosenblum/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

The Florida Gators are on the road once again as they will take on the Vanderbilt Commodores. The Gators are on a hot streak as they are on a four-game winning streak and have beaten two straight ranked opponents. Dan Mullen has gotten Florida to where they have already won more wins than they did all of last season. One of those wins last year came against Vanderbilt as the Gators won at home 38-24. The Florida defense has been dominant since the Kentucky loss and the offense has played better than last season. Here is the preview for the Florida vs. Vanderbilt game.

Vanderbilt Commodores

The Vanderbilt Commodores are back home after a tough 41-13 loss to the Vanderbilt Commodores. The Vanderbilt offense will be led by their star quarterback Kyle Shurmur. The senior quarterback has had a pretty solid season as he has completed 113 out of 187 passes for 1,400 yards, nine touchdowns and four interceptions. The Vanderbilt offense has been one dimensional for most of the season and will need to establish a running game. Redshirt-junior Ke’Shawn Vaughn will need to get more touches in order to keep Florida’s defense guessing. Vaughn has 65 carries for 439 yards and five touchdowns. The lead receiver for the Vanderbilt Commodores is Kalija Lipscomb. The junior wide out is one of the top receivers in the SEC as he has 45 receptions for 496 yards and six touchdowns.

On defense, Vanderbilt hasn’t been as impressive as they have been in the past under head coach Derek Mason. They had a hard time against Tennessee State, allowing 27 points and got beat badly by Georgia. One of the key defenders for Vanderbilt is cornerback Joejuan Williams. The junior defensive back has had a nice season with 27 tackles, two tackles for a loss, an interceptions and four pass breakups. The Commodores lead tackler is senior linebacker Jordan Griffin. The Florida native has 50 tackles on the year with two tackles for loss, one sack and a fumble recovery. Redshirt-sophomore Kenny Hebert leads Vanderbilt is sacks with three on the season. He’ll be big for the Vandy defense as they’ll need him to apply some pressure on the Florida quarterback.

Florida Gators

The Florida Gators are on a roll with some big wins against their rivals. They have played in some loud environments but that won’t be the case on Saturday. Feleipe Franks and the Florida offense will need to create some energy early in the game to get his team going. The Florida offense has been an improvement since last season and it starts with the quarterback. Franks has looked like a new man this season as he has passed for 1,122 yards, 13 passing touchdowns and four interceptions. The Gators had a nice game on the ground versus LSU last Saturday and will look to duplicate that performance against Vandy. Jordan Scarlett and Lamical Perine are the lead rushers for the Gators and will get plenty of touches. Florida’s lead receiver is the junior Freddie Swain. He has 10 catches for 214 yards and three touchdowns.

The Florida Gators defense will need to be ready for the Vanderbilt Commodores and their passing attack. One defensive player that can stop the Commodores aerial attack is Jachai Polite. He has a team-high six sacks on the year with 24 tackles and 7.5 tackles for loss. Jabari Zuniga is another defensive end for watch out for as he has 22 tackles with 7.5 tackles for loss and 4.5 sacks. The two defensive backs that may shadow Vandy’s  Lipscomb is C.J. Henderson and Brad Steward. Henderson is one of the top corners in the SEC and Steward leads the Gators in interceptions with two. Junior linebacker Vosean Joseph is the Gators lead tackler with 42 tackles, 6.5 tackles for loss, three sacks and a forced fumble. Florida’s defense will need force Vanderbilt to throw the ball and led their stout defensive ends meet at the quarterback.

5 Players to Watch: Vanderbilt Commodores

  1. WR Kalija Lipscomb
  2. CB Joejuan Williams
  3. QB Kyle Shurmur
  4. LB Kenny Hebert
  5. LB Jordan Griffin

5 Players to Watch: Florida Gators

  1. DE Jachai Polite
  2. RB Lamical Perine
  3. LB David Reese
  4. TE Moral Stephens
  5. WR Van Jefferson

5 Predictions:

  1. Florida gets two rushing touchdowns versus Vandy.
  2. Kalija Williams leads the Commodores in receiving.
  3. Jachai Polite adds another sack to his terrific junior season.
  4. Kenny Hebert also gets a sack in the ballgame.
  5. Florida Gators beats Vanderbilt Commodores 31-13.

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