GAINESVILLE, Fla. (AP) — Getting to Atlanta for the Southeastern Conference championship game is the goal for every team in the Southeastern Conference.
Florida has accomplished it more often than anyone else.
Maybe that's why the third-ranked Gators are taking such a ho-hum approach to Saturday's all-important game against No. 12 Georgia. A more likely scenario, though, is that it's early, and players and coaches are saving all the hype and hoopla for the weekend.
"Nothing's changed for us," coach Will Muschamp said Monday. "We're not working any longer, harder. Practice, it's all the same. We don't approach things differently based on the situation because next week's important, too."
Not quite like this one, though.
The Gators (7-0, 6-0 SEC) can clinch a spot in the conference title game with a victory against rival Georgia (7-1, 5-1). The Bulldogs, meanwhile, need to beat Florida and probably win remaining games against Mississippi and Auburn to get to Atlanta.
"It's good for us," Gators linebacker Jon Bostic said. "That's one of our goals from the beginning of the year. We certainly want to get to Atlanta, but we've got to take it one game at a time. It's another SEC game we want to win."
Florida has represented the Eastern Division 10 times since the inception of the title game in 1992. The Gators also have more wins (7) than anyone else.
But few outsiders expected Muschamp's team to contend for the division in his second season. Not after last year's 7-6 record that included the coach calling his players soft. Not with a sophomore quarterback. Not with a new offensive coordinator.
The Gators, though, have surprised just about everyone.
They came from behind to win at Texas A&M and Tennessee. They were more physical than LSU and South Carolina. They have been most impressive with halftime adjustments, second-half stamina and special teams play.
Now, all that stands in the way of another trip to Atlanta is Georgia.
"It's another big game," quarterback Jeff Driskel said. "It's an SEC East game, and it's the Florida-Georgia game. You couldn't really ask for more. You come to Florida to play in games like this. We're excited to start preparing and we're ready for another big week. ... We know what's at stake, but we're going to prepare like we have been all year and just be ready when it comes Saturday."