Three truths for Florida Football from ESPN's FPI rankings

The Gators are ranked 20th in the computer rankings from ESPN
Doug Engle/Gainesville Sun / USA TODAY

As the 2024 season gets closer and closer for Florida Football, the general narrative surrounding the Gators is that Billy Napier and crew are going to have to surprise some people this season in order to beat national expectations.

Among the precursors during the build up to the start of season is the release of ESPN's Football Power Index, a computer ranking that is far from perfect but still has elements of truth to it.

This Roster Is Good Enough To Win

We have written this multiple times throughout the off-season, but the roster Napier has assembled for 2024 is good enough to win its fair share of games. Coming in at 20th in the rankings, the Gators are not only ranked ahead of some media darlings like Louisville, Miami, and Kentucky, but they are not that far behind squads like Ole Miss and Clemson.

This Schedule Is In Fact Brutal

The good news is that Florida is ranked 20th and if they had Missouri's schedule, for example, there are reasonable expectations where 8-4 would be the floor in 2024.

But they don't have Missouri's schedule; they instead have an absolutely brutal gauntlet that shows zero mercy. Even though the Gators are 20th, there are seven teams on Florida's schedule ranked ahead of Florida in FPI.

ESPN's FPI projects the Gators for 5.9 wins in 2024. Only two other teams ranked in the top 40 have a projected wins under six (Wisconsin and UCLA).

Miami and UCF Are Must Win Games

Florida is ranked ahead of Miami (23rd) and UCF (32nd) in the FPI rankings. Given Florida's position, these will be coin flip games in order for the Gators to pull off.

But one of the problems for Florida under Napier has been the inability to come away with victories in these coin flip games, whether its been due to turnovers or just a lack of organization to know when to run the field goal unit on the field.

The simple truth is that if Florida can't beat Miami and UCF, there are not many other teams on Florida's schedule could they look at and say "Well we couldn't beat the Hurricanes, but we can beat you."