This weekend, College GameDay will be in Knoxville for the match-up between the Tennessee Volunteers and the Florida Gators. Many believe that it is finally Tennessee’s year to beat Florida. However, the Gators are focused on making sure that one of their biggest rivals won’t come out on top.
In order to understand this classic rivalry, let’s look at some of the most interesting numbers surrounding this game.
102,455: On Saturday, all 102,455 seats in Neyland stadium will be filled to watch the Vols take on one of their fiercest rivals. The fans will be as loud as possible, in an attempt to disrupt the Gators. The “checker Neyland” event will also be taking place Saturday – the third year in a row it has happened.
11: The current winning streak for the Gators over the Vols. It is the longest winning streak by either team in the series. Tennessee hasn’t beaten Florida since 2004, when Phillip Fulmer and Erik Ainge led the Vols to a 30-28 victory..
45: The two teams have faced off 45 times since they began playing in 1916. Florida holds the lead in the all time series against the Vols 26-19.
100: The first meeting between the two schools was 100 years ago. However, the game didn’t truly become a rivalry until the 1990’s. 27 of the 45 games the schools have played have been since 1990. In the previous 74 years, the teams only played 19 times.
1: Last year in the Swamp, Tennessee lost to Florida 28-27 in a game where the Vols had many chances to score. On a fourth-and-14 with 1:25 left in the game, Tennessee was unable to keep Will Grier from throwing a 63-yard touchdown to Antonio Callaway. The Vols were able to drive into field goal range, but they were unable to capitalize. Aaron Medley missed a potential game-winning field goal as time expired.
254: Last year against the Gators, Tennessee rushed for 254 yards against one of the nation’s best defensive fronts. Joshua Dobbs led the charge with 136 yard on the ground. Jalen Hurd added another 102 yards. In order for Tennessee to end its 11-game losing streak, the Vols will need to have similar success on the ground.
18: Coming into this game, Tennessee and Florida are both banged up and missing key players. The teams have a combined 18 players that are either out or questionable for this Saturday. The most notable injuries for Florida are quarterback Luke Del Rio and receiver Antonio Callaway. Callaway is questionable for the game with an injured quad, while Del Rio will miss the game due to a leg injury suffered against North Texas. The most notable injuries for the Vols are corner Cameron Sutton (fractured ankle) and linebacker Darrin Kirkland Jr. (high ankle sprain). Linebacker Jalen Reeves-Maybin aggravated his previous shoulder injury against Ohio, but he is expected to play on Saturday.
Tennessee faces the Florida Gators on Saturday at 3:30 p.m. ET on CBS.
Edited by Adam Milliken
Featured image by Donald Page, courtesy of Tennessee Athletics