They're No. 1. They're No. 2. They're No. 1.
The only consistency to the Florida Gators' season so far is that they score at least 70 points a game."It's good to know (about the ranking), after a few people tried to say we ran up the score - which wasn't the case," Florida coach Steve Spurrier said Sunday.
Florida held the top spot in the preseason voting, then dropped to No. 2 behind Nebraska despite a 70-21 victory over New Mexico State in its opening game two weeks ago. Now, it's back to No. 1.
"It was a bit more of an honor being voted the preseason No. 1, a tremendous honor for all Gators, but we are worried about Tennessee now," Spurrier said of this week's game. "I guess somebody has to be No. 1, so we'll take it and try to live up to it."
What will be tough to live up to is the point production the Gators have managed so far.
In just five quarters, Terry Dean has 11 touchdown passes without an interception. Backups Danny Wuerffel and Eric Kresser have thrown for three TDs, while fourth-stringer Brian Schottenheimer has directed two drives that produced rushing TDs.
Last season, Florida set Southeastern Conference records for points, total yards, passing yards, passing TDs and first downs. The early numbers this year come despite losing several key players.
The biggest question in the preseason was whether Spurrier could find a dependable replacement for running back Errict Rhett, the school's career rushing leading.
So far, the answer is yes. Three times.
Freshmen Elijah Williams, Fred Taylor and Tyrone Baker gained all but 23 of the 304 yards Florida had on the ground against Kentucky. Williams scored twice and Baker once.
Newcomers also have made up for the loss of Willie Jackson and Harrison Houston, two of the most prolific receivers in school history. Freshmen Reidel Anthony and Ike Hilliard have four TD receptions in two games, while junior Jack Johnson caught a school-record four touchdown passes against New Mexico State.
"We're a lot better team than we were at this time last year. That's obvious," Spurrier said, referring to last season's 24-20 victory over Kentucky on a last-minute touchdown. "We stole that game. We are much improved offensively and defensively."
Spurrier now has to get his team focused on No. 15 Tennessee.
He said he will stress the importance of winning against ranked teams on the road - where Florida is 0-7 against Top 25 teams in the past four seasons.
Spurrier hopes his players haven't been fooled into expecting to score at will all season.
"We aren't trying to run up score on anybody," Spurrier said. "We just let our players play for 60 minutes."