NASHVILLE (AP) — Sticking to the ground sure helped the Florida Gators cut back their mistakes.
Now the Gators must prove they keep it up.
"People are going to game plan our run, and there are great defensive coordinators out there that are going to look at the tape and see what they can do to stop us," Florida center Max Garcia said. "But ... as an offensive line we're going to go out there and just keep blocking people and finishing people to the ground."
The Gators' ground and pound approach routed then-No. 9 Georgia 38-20 last weekend, rolling up 418 yards on 60 rushes. It was Florida's best production against a Southeastern Conference team since 1975 when the Gators ran for 454 against Vanderbilt, helping Treon Harris throw only six passes in his first start at quarterback.
Vanderbilt coach Derek Mason said he expects the Gators to expand their offense since they had time to plan ahead with an open date before beating Georgia. He also wants his Commodores to help force Florida's hand.
"I think they're going to throw the ball more than six times if we can slow down the run game," Mason said.
That win tamped down talk of Florida coach Will Muschamp's job security. The Gators (4-3, 3-3) now even have an outside shot at the SEC Eastern Division title if they get some help and take win themselves starting Saturday night at Vanderbilt (3-6, 0-5). Muschamp said the Gators must be focused only on Vanderbilt.
"If we don't take care of our business, nothing else matters and that's kind of where we're at at this point," Muschamp said.
The Commodores have found something offensively themselves. Redshirt freshman Johnny McCrary tied a school record throwing five touchdown passes, each to a different receiver, as Vanderbilt thumped Old Dominion 42-28 for a second win in three games.
Vanderbilt has a chance at a rare winning streak over Florida after a 34-17 win in the Swamp last year, though the Commodores have lost 11 straight to the Gators in Nashville.
"We want an SEC win," Vanderbilt linebacker Nigel Bowden said.
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