Will Muschamp, Al Golden try to keep player emotions in check
The Florida-Miami series may not be as intense as it once was, at least for this group of players, but Florida coach Will Muschamp and Miami coach Al Golden know that when the two sides meet on Saturday afternoon, emotions will be running high.
Which is why both have made a concerted effort to talk to players this week about making sure they don't let their emotions take over in the game.
“You’ve gotta keep your composure," Muschamp said. "It’s going to be a very emotional game, there’s going to be some ups and downs in the game. You gotta play for 60 minutes, It’s going to be an emotional game. Anytime you play a rival or play somebody you know a lot about, certainly you need to make sure you keep your composure within the game and play through the situations.”
Golden said he believes his team is much more mature than last season, and he's not concerned about excessive trash-talk or taking the hype too far.
“I think they’ll be ready," Golden said. "I hope we don’t have to convince them that it’s going to be a big game or going to be fun. They know what it’s all about. The key is to have poise and not hyperventilate in the beginning and now you’re shot. We need to have some poise and use our maturity - it’s nice to say that word, to say we have maturity and experience - and just keep our composure.”
For many of the Gators, including QB Jeff Driskel, the game doesn't have the same rivalry feel as Florida State or Georgia because the teams don't meet annually. But Driskel said that doesn't mean the game will lack intensity or passion from both sides.
"It's an in-state game, we don't play them too often," he said. "We do have a lot of guys that know each other, so there will be some emotions. We've got to handle that. Coach Muschamp mentioned that earlier. We have to be able to handle ourselves, and I think we will."