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We will learn most of what we need to learn about Florida-Missouri in the first quarter

Here are today's Mizzou Links.

Florida Coach Jim McElwain said his sophomore quarterback Luke Del Rio is "a competitive son of a gun," and he figures Del Rio was chomping at the bit to return to the field while he sat out the Gators’ last two games with a sprained left knee. [...]

Although Del Rio's emotions might be running high, McElwain wants him to take the passes given to him and take shots downfield only when they’re there. In other words, keep those emotions in check.

"I know he’s going to be really juiced up and excited to get back on the field," McElwain said.

-- The Trib (Blake Toppmeyer): Opposing view: McElwain wants Florida QB Del Rio to keep emotions in check in return

I was already leaning toward listing the first quarter as one of the keys to the football game in today's Mizzou-Florida preview. The rationale there was that we should know what we need to know about whether Mizzou's offense has a chance of clicking within just a couple of possessions -- is the offensive line getting a push? Are Mizzou's receivers able to fight off of Florida's coverage to get into their routes? Et cetera.

I hadn't really considered the "Del Rio's ready to make an impact" variable, though. That could make the early going even more interesting. Del Rio is still a pretty young guy despite having already transferred twice in his career, and if he's a little bit too "juiced up" and plays too aggressively in the early going, that could give Mizzou's defense an opportunity to make a big play. (That, or he completes a bomb, and Florida takes an early lead.)

It always feels like putting "first quarter!" on a keys-to-the-game list is always a bit of a cop-out -- the first quarter is always important -- but ... it's going on the list.

Mizzou Tigers pennant 1 day to Florida @MizzouFootball Uniform Unveil @MizzouFootball Fan Primer - at Florida

Post-Dispatch: Mizzou faces another elite defense at Florida

Florida’s linebacker tandem is flanked by feisty cornerbacks Quincy Wilson and Jalen "Teez" Tabor, whose eight career interceptions includes a pick-six touchdown return against Mizzou’s Drew Lock last year in Columbia.

If Mizzou’s receivers were under siege by LSU’s man-to-man coverages two weeks ago, they’ll sense another tight squeeze Saturday.

"We’ve got to do a great job on the line of scrimmage, man," Mizzou offensive coordinator Josh Heupel said. "They use their hands extremely well. They disrupt you, to say the least."

Post-Dispatch (BenFred): Ground game lagging in Mizzou offense's overhaul

KC Star: Mizzou special teams still searching for more return yards

Maybe the strangest, worst awesome game ever

Mizzou Tigers pennant Big weekend ahead

Volleyball @MizzouVB Travels to Alabama for Sunday Matchup

Soccer @MizzouSoccer Hosts Vanderbilt Friday on Senior Night

Cross Country Mizzou Cross Country Set for Bradley Classic and Pre-Nationals

Swimming & Diving @MizzouSwimDive Hosts Alabama Friday in SEC Opener

Golf @MizzouMensGolf and Walker Carry Momentum into Bank of Tennessee Intercollegiate

Tennis Santos Earns 100th Career Win at USTA/ITA Central Region Championships

Baseball Black Evens Fall World Series With Game Two Win

Mizzou Tigers pennant 11 am kickoffs are terrible (and sometimes great)

SB Nation: College football Saturdays have terrible early games. Here's why we love them

This one was a group effort at SBN ... I enjoyed my contribution.