Will Muschamp enters his second season at the helm at Florida with tremendous pressure already mounting. The Gators offense was the worst in the SEC last year which is not something that gator nation was very understanding of, given the schools offensive prowess over the past twenty years. Florida enters 2012 with uncertainty at quarterback and it will be sophomores Jacoby Brissett and Jeff Driskel battling it out for snaps.
For the Gators to improve on their 7-5 season, they will need consistency at quarterback and an improved running game. Mike Gillislee will be the guy who handles a lot of that load for the Gators although look for Mack Brown to be a nice compliment. These are two bigger backs and should provide Florida with more of a power run game than they've had in the past. Receiver is also a big question mark on offense and the Gators desperately need a play maker to emerge. Andre Debose had 16 catches a year ago and that is the most among returning wide-outs. Sophomore Quinton Dunbar and junior Soloman Patton will both see significant time as well.
Defensively, Florida was barely above middle-of-the-pack a year ago. Their defensive secondary was one of the youngest in the nation last season and if the pieces fall into place this unit could be one of the best in the SEC. Marcus Roberson is an excellent young playmaker and Matt Elam has settled in nicely at strong safety. Up front, losing Jaye Howard may sting a bit, but Florida's defensive line should be very strong in 2012. Omar Hunter at nose and Dominique Easley at end, provide the necessary force in the trenches to create havoc in offensive backfields. Linebackers Jon Bostic and Jelani Jenkins are wily veterans and Muschamp needs these two to be big time playmakers to solidify this defense.
Florida should be an improved football team, but just how much better can they get? Uncertainty at quarterback and lack of playmakers at receiver may hurt them early, but if some of that talent emerges then you will see Florida as a team on the rise in the SEC East.
7-5 (4-4) 4th place SEC East
Bowl Game- Independence Bowl
September 1 vs. Bowling Green, 3:30 p.m.
September 8 at Texas A&M, 3:30 p.m.
September 15 at Tennessee, 6:00 p.m.
September 22 vs. Kentucky, TBA
October 6 vs. LSU, TBA
October 13 at Vanderbilt, TBA
October 20 vs. South Carolina, TBA
October 27 vs. Georgia, 3:30 p.m.
November 3 vs. Missouri, TBA
November 10 vs. Louisiana, TBA
November 17 vs. Jacksonville State, TBA