Florida football’s 2022 season opener saw the Orange and Blue beat the Utah Utes in front of a sold-out Ben Hill Griffin Stadium on in primetime on ESPN to give Billy Napier his first win as the Gators’ head coach.
The 2023 season opener will see the Gators complete the home-and-home and travel out west. Originally scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 2, the Orlando Sentinel is reporting that the game could be moved to Thursday, Aug. 31, per the contract details.
The Sentinel obtained the contract via a public records request and found out that the document allows for the game to be played on either date. When the SEC’s 2023 schedule was released last September, the game was slated for Saturday.
The flexibility comes down to logistics. By playing on Thursday night, the Gators would be able to spend the night in Salt Lake City and provide more recovery time before Florida’s home opener against McNeese State on Sept. 9. It would also be a safety net in case something prevents the Gators to fly back. on Saturday night. When Utah came to Gainesville last year, their plane had mechanical problems that delayed the team’s departure until 5 a.m. EST Sunday morning.
There is no official word on if the game has been moved. If it is played on Aug. 31, it would be the first Thursday night game Florida plays since Oct. 1, 1992, where the Orange and Blue lost to Mississippi State, 30-6.
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