Scott Stricklin’s promise to toughen up Florida’s non conference football schedule is really starting to take shape.
The newest marquee addition to Florida’s out of conference slate has just been revealed this afternoon, as first reported by Pat Dooley. In 2022, the Gators will host the Utah Utes in the Swamp on a date to be named later. A year later, Florida will travel to Salt Lake City for the rematch.
Per sources, Florida has scheduled non-conference games against @Utah_Football with game in Gainesville in 2022 and Salt Lake City the following year. Plan accordingly.
— Pat Dooley (@pat_dooley) September 23, 2019
All of a sudden, Florida has a wide array of fascinating non conference football matchups in its future. The Gators also have home and home dates with Miami in 2024 and 2025, Colorado in 2028 and 2029, Texas in 2030 and 2031, as well as a two-for-one with South Florida (which has since been adjusted to be at USF in 2021, not 2023).
Beyond the mere allure of setting dates to play a Pac-12 football team, this matchup has some particular intrigue. Utah, of course, is the school that Urban Meyer left in order to come to Florida and lead the school to two of its three national championships. Oh, and Meyer’s offensive coordinator for those two years at Utah was none other than Dan Mullen. And assuming he doesn’t leave between now and then, Utah coach Kyle Whittingham will finally get the dream matchup against the Gators that he has been yearning for since his undefeated Utes, then in the Mountain West, were passed over by the BCS system at the end of the 2008 season.
The teams have played once before, in 1977. Florida won that game, 38-29, in Gainesville.
But with the rise of Utah from a Cinderella into a respected Power Five opponent, these next two games in the series should be a lot more meaningful- and fun.