Where: Oxford, Miss.
When: Saturday, 11:30 CDT
TV: Lincoln Financial Sports - affiliates listing
After three straight home games to start the season, it's time for the Gators to take their show on the road. First stop is Oxford, Mississippi, where Florida coach Urban Meyer hopes to get some valuable road experience for his young squad against the Ole Miss Rebels.
Many players on the Florida roster have never even traveled to a road game, much less played in one. Overall, 48 players who have seen action in a game this year are either freshmen or sophomores. Seventeen of the 48 are true freshmen this season and 32 are either true or redshirt freshmen.
The Rebels own a two-game winning streak on the Gators, having beaten Florida in 2002 and 2003. The Gators have not won a game in the state of Mississippi since a 38-14 victory over the Rebels in Oxford in 1994.
Florida is coming off a dominating win over Tennessee, and will have to guard against a letdown against what seems to be an overmatched opponent in Ole Miss. The Rebels lost 31-17 at Vanderbilt last week.
Both squads were hit with key injuries in last week's games. Florida lost linebacker Jerimy Finch for the season with a fracture in his lower leg. WR Andre Caldwell (knee) is expected to sit out his second straight game. Guard Maurkice Pouncey (ankle) and cornerback Markihe Anderson (knee) are questionable for Saturday. Riley Cooper (ankle) is expected back.
For the Rebels, starting quarterback Seth Wallace went down with an injured shoulder against Vanderbilt, but reports indicate he may be ready by Saturday. If not, last year's starter Brent Schaeffer would get the start. With question marks at quarterback, expect Ole Miss to rely even more heavily on all-SEC running back BenJarvis Green-Ellis, currently third in the SEC with 371 rushing yards.
Green-Ellis will have his work cut out for him against the Gators, who are currently second in the league in rush defense, giving up only 46 yards per game.
The biggest mismatch appears to be the Florida passing attack against the Rebel defense. Florida is first in the SEC with 289 passing yards per game, while the Ole Miss pass defense is worst in the league, surrendering 291 yards per game.
Where the Rebels may be able to make up ground is in penalties and turnovers. Ole Miss is the least-penalized team in the SEC (27 yards per game), while Florida is the most-penalized (73 yards per game).
If Florida holds on to the ball and avoids drive-stalling penalties, this game shouldn't be close. Florida has the firepower to build a big lead by halftime. But if UF road-game jitters take hold, the Rebels might hang around for three quarters. In all likelihood, the Gators backups will get some playing time late in the game.
Florida Gator Nation Prediction: Florida 48, Ole Miss 13