One of college football’s most intense rivalries is renewed this weekend, when the Florida Gators travel to Knoxville to take on the Tennessee Volunteers. Both teams enter the contest ranked in the AP Top 25, as the Gators check in at 20, while the Volunteers are just outside the top ten, in the 11th spot.
Florida enters the meeting with a 2-1 record on the year. They topped Utah in their first meeting of the season, in a highly-anticipated matchup to open the year. That game served as perhaps quarterback Anthony Richardson’s breakout party, as he completed 17 of 24 passes for 168 yards, and added another 106 rushing yards on 11 carries. That outing propelled Richardson to the top of many mock drafts.
Since then, however, Richardson and the Gators offense has sputtered. They lost to Kentucky in the second week of the season, and the quarterback completed just 14 of 35 passes for 143 yards, and threw a pair of interceptions in the 26-16 loss.
Last week, the Gators got back in the win column, beating South Florida by a final score of 31-28. But the game was much closer than expected, and Richardson again struggled. He hit on 10 of 18 passes for 112 yards, and threw two more interceptions.
He has yet to throw a touchdown pass this season.
On the other side of the field, the Volunteers have been rolling this season. They opened the year with a 59-10 victory over Ball State, then went on the road to beat Pittsburgh in overtime by a final score of 34-27. They topped Akron last week by a final of 63-6, and enter Saturday’s meeting averaging 52 points per game.
Quarterback Hendon Hooker is a big part of their early success, and might be playing himself into the draft quarterback discussion. On the year he has connected on 59 of his 85 passing attempts, for 844 yards and 6 touchdowns.
He has yet to throw an interception this season.
Time: 3:30 p.m. ET
Streaming: FuboTV and any other streaming device
Location: Neyland Stadium, Knoxville, Tennessee
Spread: Tennessee is currently a 10.5-point favorite
That’s right, ESPN College GameDay is headed to Knoxville for this SEC tilt. Coverage begins at 9:00 a.m. ET live from Ayres Hall Lawn, just steps from Neyland Stadium. Rece Davis, Lee Corso Kirk Herbstreit, Desmond Howard, Pat McAfee, Jess Sims and more will be live to take football fans right up to the noon-time kickoffs. As they are each week, they will be joined by a special guest to pick games.