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SEC 2009 // Florida Goes for Lucky No. 14

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C&F's predictions for the Florida Gators.

Finish: National Champion, SEC Champion, SEC East Champion

General: The only question, really, is whether Florida can go undefeated. Sure, some contrarian streaks are going to emerge here and there, telling you that Florida is not a lock for Atlanta -- nonsense -- and that the Gators aren't the prohibitive favorites to make the national title game. These are the same people that do this sort of thing all the time, because no one will remember if you got it wrong, but you get to hold it over everyone's head forever if you get it right. ("Well, if you'll remember, when everyone was jumping on Florida's wagon 28 years ago ... ") To those contrarians: Tell me one game that Florida shouldn't be favored in. And give me an argument that you actually believe. Then we'll talk. (And I'm serious. I'd love to hear any thoughts on a game that Florida actually might lose in the comments.) I thought for a moment about calling the national title game, but I haven't gone through this exercise for every conference, so I'm not confident enough to make a specific call. Right now, I'd say you have to give Florida the edge to win that game and go 14-0 for its first perfect season.

More specific:I have said before that I tried not to mark down too many league games as sure wins for anyone. Then again, show me a game here marked as a "WIN" that you would argue with. All of those teams are far behind Florida in talent -- yes, even Tennessee -- and some, such as Mississippi State, are so outmanned it shouldn't be a game at halftime. Of course, a team that's supposed to go undefeated and one that actually does are two different things. Trap games: possibly Kentucky or Arkansas (because of LSU) or Mississippi State (because of the history in Starkville and the looming game with Georgia). But any of those are hard to see.

Game-specific:

9.5 :: vs. Charleston Southern :: WIN

9.12 :: vs. Troy :: WIN

9.19 :: vs. Tennessee :: WIN

9.26 :: at Kentucky :: WIN

10.10 :: at LSU :: PROBABLE WIN

10.17 :: vs. Arkansas :: WIN

10.24 :: at Mississippi State :: WIN

10.31 :: vs. Georgia (Jacksonville) :: PROBABLE WIN

11.7 :: vs. Vanderbilt :: WIN

11.14 :: at South Carolina :: WIN

11.21 :: vs. Florida International :: WIN

11.28 :: vs. Florida State :: PROBABLE WIN

12.5 :: SEC CHAMPIONSHIP GAME: vs. Alabama (Atlanta) :: PROBABLE WIN

Final record (pre-SEC Championship Game): 12-0, 8-0 SEC

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MONDAY: Florida's Song Remains the Same; The Connnectedness of Florida's Heisman Winners
TUESDAY:
The Underdogs Florida Will Face; Don't Miss Tebow's Last Year
WEDNESDAY: Meet the New Gators, Same as the Old Gators; Gator Coaching Staff Changes Should Not Be Overlooked
EARLIER TODAY: Tim Tebow's Wikipedia Entry, c. 2070
FRIDAY: Conclusions