Florida football coach Dan Mullen is the one coming to Columbia with a top 10 football team.
But he’s not downplaying anything about the South Carolina Gamecocks.
“Huge game for us right now,” Mullen said at his weekly press conference. “Good challenge for our team.”
His team is in the midst of one of the most challenging stretches for any team in the country this season. The Gators are coming off games against Auburn, at LSU and next week goes to Jacksonville to face Georgia.
And in the middle of all that is a South Carolina team that’s only 3-3, but just upended the No. 3 Bulldogs.
Here’s what Mullen said about the Gamecocks:
On the team overall
“Talented team, obviously a team that has some great playmakers on their offensive side of the ball. One of the best receivers in the league (in Bryan Edwards), run the ball really well, good offensive front, able to block. Defensive line, they’ve got a premier defensive line. Some veteran players at linebacker that are great playmakers, and then some real big-time playmakers in the secondary, I think everybody saw that last week. So, should be a big challenge for us. We’ve got to try to find a way to win.”
On playing a Muschamp defense
“They play hard. He does a good job. They have a lot of talent on the defensive side of the ball. They give you a lot of different multiple looks. I think they mix a lot of different things up, which is always a challenge. But you watch them, you watch them the last couple games, watch the guys, they have, they are a talented defensive front. You know, probably as good or better than the defensive front we played last week. And then they’ve got veteran linebackers that I think are great playmakers. And then the secondary, you saw their corners, their length, their skill they have at corner, the play-making ability they have. So they have a lot of talent. He does a good job mixing things up to kind of keep you on edge of coverage, blitz, mixing up looks. He’s always done a good job of that.”
On what South Carolina’s two QBs bring to the table?
“They’ve had to deal with a little bit of quarterback injuries. It looks like Hilinski is fine and he’s going to play. So it doesn’t look like that will be an issue for them. The other quarterback came in and I thought, very much like our guys, he did a great job. They didn’t change what they did offensively. He just brought a little flavor to it. And he was able to come in and win the game for them, you know. So, I think it shows they have some good depth and they feel pretty comfortable with both guys playing.”