SIX BITS: Wrapping up Florida at LSU

By Adam Silverstein
October 11, 2009

1 » While Florida Gators doctors were stressed about the eventual results of quarterback Tim Tebow‘s tests on Saturday, Tebow was more scared Friday afternoon while he was flying into the game. Tebow, a notoriously bad flier, often gets sick on flights – especially when there is a lot of turbulence. “I didn’t get sick, which was a great test for the doctors,” Tebow said. “Honestly, I think God kept me healthy on that plane ride, because most of the time I would probably have gotten sick on that plane ride, and that would have looked bad as far as me playing.”

2 » Saturday night’s game was not all about Tebow, as the Gators have another leader out there on the field. Middle linebacker Brandon Spikes finished with a team-high 11 tackles, 2.5 sacks and a forced fumble. Spikes lined up all over the field, playing both middle and outside linebacker positions as well as at defensive end. “Spikes felt like he got called out earlier in the day on ESPN by (Kirk) Herbstreit. He felt like he got called out, so I guess he stepped up tonight,” senior linebacker Ryan Stamper said.

3 » While Florida made a name for themselves on the ground in Death Valley, the biggest play of the game was through the air when Tebow hooked up with wide receiver Riley Cooper for the game’s only touchdown. “Coop’s a playmaker and we gotta keep going to him,” tight end Aaron Hernandez said. “When we need to take a shot, Coop’s the one to go to.”

4 » As I mentioned when speaking with Newsday on Friday, it was the Gators defense that made the difference in Saturday night’s game. “Defensively, it was one of the best efforts I’ve ever seen at containing athletes,” head coach Urban Meyer said. “The personality of the team is toughness. Good teams are tough. That team that wore blue jerseys tonight was tough.” Florida’s defense walked out of Death Valley still only having given up two touchdowns in its first five games. In fact, the Gators may very well have shut out the LSU Tigers if not for two personal foul penalties allowing them to get within field goal range. “If it wasn’t for that, I don’t think they would have scored at all,” Stamper said.

5 » Tiger Stadium in considered by many to be the toughest place to play in America – especially at night. Add a record crowd of 93,129 to the mix, and it should be damn near impossible to silence them. But that is exactly what Florida did last night, ending LSU’s streak of 32 straight home night game victories and grabbing their first victory at LSU under coach Meyer.

6 » Dan Shanoff of believes Saturday night’s win was one of the Top 5 in Tebow’s career. “It was not ‘classic’ Tebow, in that he was dominating,” Shanoff said. “It was classic Tebow in that he did whatever was necessary to help Florida win the game — even subordinating his style to fit the extreme situation. “I’m not going to go out there and play tentative and scared. That’s not me,” Tebow said. “I did try to play smart.”

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