The 2020 Goodyear Cotton Bowl kicks off at 8pm ET on Wednesday December 30. The game features the No.7 Florida Gators and the No.6 Oklahoma Sooners. It is their second meeting all time with Florida owning the lone win. We’ll preview the teams here.
No.7 Florida Gators (8-3)
The Gators started off strong this season with one heartbreaking three-point loss to Texas A&M. After a six game winning streak Florida dropped off at the end of the season with back to back losses. The LSU loss was quite the setback but they fought Alabama hard in the SEC Championship coming up just short.
Florida boasts one of the best offenses in the country at 41.6 points per game. They trail just Alabama in the SEC. The Gators favor the pass heavily, averaging 388.4 yards per game and just 120.5 yards on the ground.
The Gators are very susceptible defensively. They have failed to stop the big play throughout the season and have failed to have that strong showing in a game this year. They struggle against the pass which is bad news going against a strong Sooner air attack.
Kyle Trask is the heart of the offense and a Heisman candidate. Unfortunately he’ll be without all his weapons for this game. His four top targets will be out for this game due to opt outs and COVID. That’s nearly 59% of the receptions, 65% of receiving yards and 75% of the touchdowns.
No.6 Oklahoma Sooners (8-2)
Oklahoma was off to their worst start in the Big 12 since 1998. At 1-2, 0-2 in the Big12, the Sooners got a huge four overtime win over Texas. It was the beginning of a seven game winning streak that included the Big12 Championship.
The Sooners have used both a strong offense and strong defense during the stretch. The offense ranks the best in the Big12 at 41.8 points per game, as well as in the passing game at 321.6 yards per game. On the flipside the defense also ranks very well, placing top three in the conference in both points per game, rushing yards per game and turnovers per game.
The offense struggled early on, particularly in the turnover column. True freshman Spencer Rattler took some time to get comfortable, throwing four interceptions in his first two Big12 games. The following seven games he threw just three total interceptions.
Defensively the Sooners have been much improved compared to previous seasons. With Florida having so many players out, the defense should be able to match up favorably against Florida’s backup receivers. The Sooners’ pass defense is the lone weak point on that side of the ball, allowing 243 yards per game.
This game features teams that are on opposite trajectories as the season closes. Florida has two losses and missed their shot at the playoff. And Oklahoma is red hot and getting better with each game. With all the opt outs Florida has, it’s hard to see them capable of beating Oklahoma.
Florida: 24, Oklahoma 34
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