College Football
Idaho at Florida
When: 12:00 PM ET, Saturday, November 17, 2018
Where: Ben Hill Griffin Stadium, Gainesville, Florida

What a difference a year makes in Gainesville as Dan Mullen transformed a Florida team that won just four games a year ago into one flirting with a New Year's Six bowl berth. The Gators, ranked 13th in the College Football Playoff rankings and No. 16 in the Coaches Poll, pulled off a 35-31 comeback victory over South Carolina last week and now close out their three-game homestand with a visit from struggling Idaho of the Big Sky.

"It would be huge," Florida coach Dan Mullen told reporters when asked about the possibility of a New Year's Six bowl. "There's an awful lot of football to be played. All we can do is try to take care of our business this week and next. Then it's kind of out of our hands at that point. ... Everybody wants to be in the top four to get to the playoff. If you're not going to make that, you want to have an opportunity to go to one of the New Year's Six bowls." The Gators need to move up one spot in the CFP rankings to do so and they face a winnable game against FCS program Idaho this Saturday followed by a season-ending matchup with downtrodden rival Florida State, which has beaten Florida five straight times but is struggling at 4-6 this year. A big key for the Gators is an offense that while much improved, remains unsteady with inconsistent quarterback Feleipe Franks at the helm, leading to speculation that highly regarded freshman Emory Jones may see some action, showcasing his talent for next season. Still, it's not the passing game that has been the difference-maker this season, it's a ground attack that physically pounded the ball in two of the team's biggest victories, producing 215 yards against LSU and 367 yards against South Carolina, only the third time the squad had at least 350 rushing yards in a game since the start of the 2010 season.

TV: Noon ET, ESPNU. LINE: None

ABOUT IDAHO (4-6): The Vandals come off a 46-27 loss to Montana, but quarterback Mason Petrino, the son of head coach Paul Petrino, had a career performance with 310 yards passing, giving him 1,863 yards for the season, with 14 touchdowns and six interceptions. Senior running back Isaiah Saunders also had a big day, rushing for 123 yards to move into 10th place in school history in career rushing (2,155 yards) and he will need an even bigger performance to have a chance against Florida as the Vandals have won 12 of the last 15 games in which they outrushed their opponent. The Vandals have also won the last 12 games that they scored 30 points.

ABOUT FLORIDA (7-3): Franks has put up far better numbers this season under Mullen's watch than last, but his ups and downs have prompted the team to rely on the powerful backfield tandem of Jordan Scarlett (629 yards) and Lamical Perine (587). The defense has also made huge strides this season, with some of the biggest improvements in the number of fumble recoveries, leaping from 125th (three fumble recoveries) in the nation last year to tied for fifth (11) thus far this season. Thanks to the combination of a new rule that allows a player to play in any four games in a season and still redshirt and the lack of restrictions on the number of players that can dress for nonconference games, the Gators expect to take a look at some of their young talent against an undersized Idaho squad.


1. While this will be the first official meeting between Idaho and Florida, the Vandals actually made the trip to Gainesville on Aug. 30, 2014, but the game was canceled due to heavy rain and weather-related issues with the field.

2. Mullen is the first head coach in Gators history to win seven games in his first season after inheriting a team that finished .500 or under the year before.

3. Florida is facing its second new opponent this season as it beat Colorado State (48-10) in a first-meeting game earlier this year.

PREDICTION: Florida 42, Idaho 16
Stats and Records
Team Comparison
  W‑L Strk PF PA Home Away Grass Turf Conf
Idaho 4-6 L1 26.4 34.9 4-1 0-5 0-0 0-3 2-5
Florida 7-3 W1 31.0 22.1 4-2 3-1 6-3 0-0 5-3
Last Meeting
Idaho Florida
Date Away Home Tot Rus Pas Tot Rus Pas
No previous meeting.
Player Stats
Previous Matchup
Passing Player COMP % YDS TD INT
Idaho N/A
Florida N/A
Rushing Player CAR YDS AVG TD
Idaho N/A
Florida N/A
Receiving Player REC YDS AVG TD
Idaho N/A
Florida N/A
Touchdowns Player TD
Idaho N/A
Florida N/A
Passing Player COMP % YDS TD INT
Idaho C. Richardson 30.0 106 1 2
Florida F. Franks 56.9 1756 17 6
Rushing Player CAR YDS AVG TD
Idaho I. Saunders 24 89 3.7 1
Florida J. Scarlett 102 629 6.2 3
Receiving Player REC YDS AVG TD
Idaho J. Cotton 4 96 24.0 1
Florida V. Jefferson 24 312 13.0 4
Touchdowns Player TD
Idaho J. Cotton 1
Florida F. Swain 6
Quickchart Matchup
Idaho Idaho Off vs  Florida Florida Def
Idaho 71 yards
Florida 355.7 yards
Idaho 4.1 yards/rush
Florida 4.4 yards/rush
Idaho 7.7 yards/attempt
Florida 6.7 yards/attempt
Florida Florida Off vs  Idaho Idaho Def
Florida 398.2 yards
Idaho 79.6 yards
Florida 5.1 yards/rush
Idaho 4.9 yards/rush
Florida 7.2 yards/attempt
Idaho 6.2 yards/attempt