Florida Football 2012 Bowl Capsule

Florida Gators


Will Muschamp has officially brought the Gators back, finishing the 2012 regular season campaign with a stellar 11-1 record. The only blemish came at the hands of a talented Georgia team that went on to win the SEC east.

2012 Record: 11-1, 7-1
Coach: Will Muschamp
Coach Bowl Record: 1-0

Big Wins: 9/8 at Texas A&M (20-17), 10/20 South Carolina (44-11)
Bad Losses: 10/27 at Georgia (9-17)

The Gators boast what is arguably the best defensive unit in the nation, holding opponents to under 100 yards per game on the ground. Opponents only mustered up a minuscule 186 yards through the air, for a grand total of only 282 yards per game. This gives the Gators a 5th place national ranking in yards allowed per game. Furthermore this defense was excellent in forcing turnovers, as the Gators cruised their way to an impressive 1.42 turnover margin, another top five in the nation and the best in the SEC. The Gators defense forcing turnovers is only part of that equation though, the offense also did a great job protecting the football all season. On offense the Gators relied on a very strong and impressive running attack. They accumulated over 190 yards per game on the ground, third in the conference. This attack is led by senior running back Mike Gillislee who rushed for over 1,100 yards and scored 10 times on the ground. The Gators are able to control the clock with a dominate rushing attack and force opponents into unfavorable down and distances and predictable situations by completely taking away the running games of opponents. This translated into opportunities for the defense to force mistakes and take control of the game, leading to many of the victories for the Gators.

The Gators passing offense and pass protection is the screaming weakness of this team. The Gators allow an inexcusable three sacks per game, making them one of the worst statistical units in pass protection across the nation. Surrendering that many sacks per game makes moving the ball through the air difficult, as the quarterback is under a lot of duress. Sophomore quarterback Jeff Driskel struggled all year to generate any sort of spark through the air. In his defense however, the Gators played one of the toughest schedules in the nation and played many of the best defensive units. The Gators were able to accumulate just over 145 yards per game through the air, a far cry from even average. Furthermore, in total offense the Gators ranked 101st in the nation making them one of the worst statistical offensive units in the nation. Again, because of the conference they play in, their offense is much better than the numbers may suggest, but they still struggle moving the ball on offense. In the most important offensive stat, points per game, the Gators finished the season ranked 10th in the conference and 75th in the nation. Those are not good numbers for a championship caliber team.

Statistical Leaders:
Rushing: Mike Gillislee, RB, 1,104 yards
Passing: Jeff Driskel, QB, 1,465 yards
Receiving: Jordan Reed, TE, 552 yards
Tackles: Josh Evans, S, 74
Sacks: Dominique Easley, DE, 4.0
Interceptions: Matt Elam, S, 3; Jaylen Watkins, CB, 3

2012 Team Stats:
Rushing Offense: 194.08 (35th in nation, 3rd in conference)
Passing Offense: 143.92 (114, 14)
Total Offense: 338.00 (101, 12)
Scoring Offense: 26.75 (75, 10)
Rushing Defense: 96.58 (6, 2)
Pass Defense: 186.00 (16, 4)
Total Defense: 282.58 (5, 2)
Scoring Defense: 12.92 (3, 2)
Turnover Margin: 1.42 (5, 1)
Sacks: 2.08 (50, 9)
Sacks Allowed: 3.00 (105, 13)

Recent Bowl Appearances:
2011    Gator Bowl        Ohio State (24-17)
2010    Outback Bowl        Penn State (37-24)
2009    Sugar Bowl        Cincinnati (51-24)
2008    BCS Championship    Oklahoma (24-14)
2007    Capital One Bowl    Michigan (35-41)

*all team stats through 11/24


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