Gainesville, Fla. -- Not (necessarily) because I am actually in Gainesville and going to the game tonight at The Swamp, I have (nearly) convinced myself that the Gators can make this a game.
I'm not saying I think Florida will win -- the memory of last year's beat-down is still too fresh. But this year's team is very different from last year's.
But, and this is scary, I think if everything (everything) breaks right -- a few unlikely turnovers, a tiny crack in the line for Rainey and Demps to scamper through, John Brantley not peeing his pants under pressure -- the Gators can be in the game in the 4th quarter, with the chance to win.
I am far more confident about Wisconsin against fellow Top 10 team Nebraska in Madison, with the Huskers making their real Big Ten debut. I think the Badgers are going to roll -- by 3 TDs or more. Wisconsin -- my preseason pick to run the table and make the national-title game -- is much better than people know from the non-conference blow-out scores. And playing at home... at night... on a national-TV "GameDay" game? It's time for Russell Wilson to go national.
Wish I was that bullish on the Gators. But I'm bullish enough -- which is enough to give me anxious butterflies in my stomach throughout the day until the 8 p.m. kickoff... and enough to leave me on the wrong side of disappointed if the expected happens and the Tide rolls.