10/20: Florida vs. South Carolina post-game report

No. 2 Florida Gators football (7-0, 6-0 SEC) earned one of their most decisive wins of the season Saturday with a 44-11 victory over the No. 7 South Carolina Gamecocks (6-2, 4-2 SEC) at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium in Gainesville, FL. The Gators have now surpassed their 2011 regular season win total. Florida head coach Will Muschamp met with the media and provided some of his thoughts after the game.

HISTORY / STREAKS / STATS

» Florida ended a two-game losing skid against South Carolina and improved to 24-6-3 in the all-time series with a 13-1-0 advantage in Gainesville. The Gators are 18-3 against the Gamecocks since the teams began playing annually in 1992 and are now 5-3 since Steve Spurrier became head coach of USC.
» UF is 11-1 against unranked opponents and 3-5 against ranked teams since Muschamp took over the program in 2011. Florida has earned all three victories over ranked opponents this season, also defeating Tennessee on the road and LSU at home.
» After having not defeated a ranked opponent at home since Nov. 15, 2008, the Gators have done so in two of their last three games.
» Florida has started a season 7-0 for the fifth time in school history.
» The Gators have not allowed a touchdown to an SEC team in The Swamp this season.
» Florida, under Muschamp, is now 11-2 when holding opponents to fewer than 21 points, 9-3 when scoring first and 11-1 when leading at the half.
» UF has started a season 7-0 for the fifth time in school history.
» The Gators out-possessed the Gamecocks by 10:56 in the game, the sixth time this season in which they won the time of possession battle.
» Florida won both halves, outscoring South Carolina 21-6 in the first half and 23-5 in the second half. The Gators are outscoring opponents 121-28 in the second half and 64-13 in the fourth quarter this season.
» UF is +11 in turnover margin thorough seven games after being -12 in 2011. Florida has forced the most turnovers in the SEC (333) since 2000.
» The Gators have registered an interception in six of seven games.

PLAYER NOTES

» Sophomore punter Kyle Christy averaged 54.3 yards per punt (50.4 net ypp) and hit a long of 62 during the game.
» Sophomore quarterback Jeff Driskel became the first signal caller since (at least) 1996 to throw for four touchdowns (a career-high) but register under 100 yards passing. He is also the first UF quarterback to score three touchdowns in consecutive games since Tim Tebow (Nov. 21 & 28, 2009) and the first to throw four touchdowns against an SEC opponent since Tebow (Oct. 20, 2007).
» Senior running back Mike Gillislee carried the ball 19 times for 37 yards, his lowest output of the season.
» Redshirt junior tight end Jordan Reed caught two touchdowns, a career-high.
» Freshman Buck linebacker Dante Fowler, Jr., sophomore cornerback Jabari Gorman and freshman RB Matt Jones registered their first career sack, interception and touchdown, respectively.
» Sophomore CB Loucheiz Purifoy forced two fumbles in the game, both of which were recovered by Florida.

“…AND OVERCOME THE ADVERSITY ON THE FIELD”

At halftime of the game, Muschamp voiced his displeasure at the officiating with the officials but was then stopped by Brady Ackerman of the Gator Radio Network for an interview. While providing his answer, Muschamp saw an official walking by and made sure to make it be known how upset he was at some of the calls in the first half. “Well, we just gotta continue to capitalize on what we’re doing and OVERCOME THE ADVERSITY ON THE FIELD!” Listen for yourself:

OVERCOME THE ADVERSITY ON THE FIELD!

Video sync clip via CFBSection

Read the rest of what Muschamp had to say…after the break!

OPENING STATEMENT

“It was a resilient team effort. Obviously the key to the game was turnovers. Four turnovers that go for 22 points, six times we’re in the red zone scoring touchdowns. They have two opportunities in the red zone and have to kick field goals. Kyle Christy seven punts over 50 yards. What a game-changer, what a field-position change to have a guy like that and a weapon like that. Also our coverage units are outstanding. Those guys – Loucheiz and all of those guys do an outstanding job. Offensively we were 7-and-16 on third down. We felt like we needed to maintain possession, especially after the first half. You got to give South Carolina’s defense a lot of credit. They did an outstanding job against us tonight, stalemated us at the line. You got to credit those guys. The third quarter was critical. They had zero first downs and we had 133 yards. We were able to move the ball, go to some things we saw at halftime that we felt like we could take advantage of offensively. It was another team win. We don’t have a lot of margin of error here. We’re a team that’s paying defense pretty decent at times and is pretty consistent offensively doing what we have to do to take advantage of the other team and give us an opportunity to win the game. We’ve played really well on special teams in controlling the vertical field position. That’s who we are right now.”

IMMENSE RESPECT FOR SPURRIER

“It has nothing to do with me being the Florida coach. It has to do with the respect I have for him as a football coach. And not necessarily what he did at Florida; what he did at Duke and what he’s done at South Carolina. I got tremendous respect for the guy, and the guy’s been good to me since I’ve been here, and I appreciate that. I’ve got as much respect for him as I do for anybody that has been a coach. What he’s accomplished and what he did for this university – I don’t ever like to use the word ‘easy’ – he’s made my job a lot more doable in recruiting because of what he’s created here and the tradition he’s created here. And I appreciate that.”

NOTES AND QUOTES

» On the team being much improved in forcing turnovers: “I don’t know anybody who does it better than Dan Quinn and our defensive staff [teaching the players to be] cognizant of taking the ball off people. Constantly in every meeting we spend a lot of time just talking about stripping the ball off people and knowing when they don’t have it high and tight.”

» On winning the turnover margin once again: “We need to be good in turnover margin. We’re not a good enough team to go out and turn the ball over, be careless with the ball and not gain some positive field position for our football team.”

» On the special teams having pride: “I think D.J. Durkin does a fantastic job. We put a lot of emphasis on it. We meet a lot. We spend, in every practice, a minimum of 25 minutes on special teams strictly. We usually concentrate on two units per day and the punt team every day. What you emphasize is what’s important.”

» On one of the keys to Florida’s success this year: “That’s what’s been good about this football team – we’re very hard self-evaluators.”

» On the crowd in The Swamp: “I want to credit our fans. We got the best crowd in ball. To go out in that environment, in that stadium and play and coach is a lot of fun. We’ve given them something to cheer about. We didn’t give them a whole lot to cheer about last year. That’s good to be able to go out and get them excited.”

» On player development: “You got to coach guys. You got to develop them. Regardless of what the recruiting sites say, everybody needs to develop in this game. Football is a developmental game.”

» On why sophomore QB Jacoby Brissett saw the field: “He deserved it. I thought the game was certainly in hand, but I would put him out there regardless of the situation. He deserved the opportunity to go in there and play. It was good to see him play.”

» On the talented defensive fronts the Gators have faced recently: “You look at two of the fronts we played in LSU and South Carolina. Those are first-round draft picks being drafted. They’re not good players; they’re really, really good players. Come April, they’ll be building houses for their parents.”

» On Christy and redshirt senior kicker Caleb Sturgis: “There’s no question I’ve got tremendous confidence in both guys. I wouldn’t trade them for anybody.”

» On if he has spoken to the team about the high poll rankings: “I sat with them Monday and I said, ‘OK, let’s have a conversation about the BCS and the AP and the UPI and the USA Today and all the polls. Is that going to help us win against South Carolina? Is any of that information going to help us prepare for the game?’ They all agreed that it wasn’t going to help us. So we’re not going to sit here and talk about it. Let’s take one step at a time – the next game, the next approach. I know that’s not a fancy approach but that’s what we do here.”

» On if he is surprised at all that Florida has started 7-0: “No, I expect to win them all. I did last year [as well]. It’s just what you do as a coach. You find ways to get it done.”

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23 Responses to “10/20: Florida vs. South Carolina post-game report”

  1. Frank says:

    Thanks Adam!

  2. Ken (CA) says:

    I think you mean TAMU on the road rather than Tenn. for ranked wins..

  3. SaraGator says:

    Haha! Love the soundclip of Muschamp, Adam!

  4. VO2max says:

    AND OVERCOME THE ADVERSITY ON THE FIELD!

    And THAT, Gator Nation was without a doubt the sound byte of the year. What a season this is turning out to be. Next week is sooo huge. The chance to go 8-0 in the SEC and return to Atlanta surpasses everything we could have imagined. Pretty boy Richt is nervously fixing his hair as I type. CRUSH UGA! Go Gators!

  5. Hugh Howey says:

    When Urban Meyer left, I told my wife we would be better off without him. Yes, there were two national championships. They coincided with Tebow and Harvin as much as with coaching. What drove me nuts was the way Meyer stuck with what didn’t work. The feeling you had sitting on the sofa, watching the plays unfold, and knowing you could make a better adjustment than that coaching staff. Seeing the fastest backs in football run between the tackles 3 out of every 4 plays.

    Now we’ve got a guy who does what you expect a coach to do. He sees what’s happening, and he adjusts. I love his attitude, his respect for the game, and the fire he brings. It seems like the players love him as well. I’ll take 20 years of this guy coaching just like this, even if it means zero championships. Watching our team win with the old staff was more painful than watching our team lose with this staff.

    Great coverage of it all, Adam. Much appreciated.

  6. Razi says:

    Hugh – you said it brotha’ !!!

  7. Razi says:

    Let’s also not under-value how important Brent Pease and Dillman have been to our success this year.

  8. Razi says:

    That call at 9:00 min in the 3rd quarter by Pease to get the TD was pure GENIOUS ! No way cheese-burger Charlie was ever creative enough to pull that.

  9. Gator John says:

    Looking at the remaining schedule, it looks like it will beat least a 10 win season. Wouldnt have thought that after the BG game. The coaches sure have done a great job preparing as we’ll as adjusting during the games. The players are really buying in and playing hard for Coach Boom. I would like to see a little better pass protection from the Oline, but they are working hard. Go gators!

  10. GatorGrad98 says:

    I am so proud of this team and of the coaching staff, I had a hard time adjusting to Muschamp but I think he is a great asset for UF & those kids. How can you not play your heart out for a coach that supports like he does (LOVE “the adversity on the field” sound bite).
    I think the offensive line did a great job against a phenomenal defense like SC’s. I cannot wait to see this team against UGA next week. I think it may just be our most complete game of the year. Everyone is coming together perfectly, defensively & offensively.
    Oh yeah, how bout that INT from JJ with a club on his hand!!! I love this group!!! GO GATORS!!!

  11. Tractorr says:

    I don’t mean to toot my own horn or sound like a homer, but I kind of figured that we would be better off this year. Look at how many inexperienced players were playing last year. Outside of the LSU and Bama games we didn’t get blown out. We are probably a little better than I thought we would be, but going in to the season I expected 9 wins and wasn’t going to be surprised with 10 or 11. Looks like 9 wins is guaranteed barring anything really crazy happening.

  12. Uf_84 says:

    I had my doubts about coach Muschamp last year and left a few comments on this site saying so. All I have to say this year is: I was wrong. He has done an outstanding job coaching this team and developing thes players.

    Memo to UGA: Be very afaid Dawgs, Here comes da Boom!!!!

  13. scooterp says:

    Great Win!….I’ll admit I didn’t have much confidence in the coaching staff when the season began, but I’m a believer now. If I heard one more fan or media nerd say ‘we’re too young’ or ‘the cupboard was bare’ I swear I was going to choke someone. I guess changing your teams identity and finding the right pieces on the coaching staff takes time and Muschamp certainly deserves a lot of credit for not deviating from his plan just because our fan base can be whiny and impatient……………… Also, I don’t understand, after two years, why we have to continue with the Urban Meyer bashing. He set the gold standard for this team and did one hell of a job when he was here. The guy was a damn good coach and fearless recruiter – THATS WHY HARVIN AND TEBOW CAME HERE. You win with good recruiting. And I’ll add that Ohio St got an upgrade from the sweatervest when they got Urban. Jesus, let it go.

  14. joe says:

    BEAT GEORGIA

  15. gatorhippy says:

    Lost in all the excitement is the symbolism of having a guy wearing Spurrier’s number that the HBC unretired during his time at UF have such a big day against the HBC…

    That had to hurt SOS’s ego just a little…

  16. Walt P says:

    Way to go Coach. Great read.

  17. KB says:

    I see some similarities in this UF season so far and the 2008 BAMA season. It was Saban’s second year at BAMA coming off a 7-6 season. They started the 2008 season ranked #24 and had a similar rise up the polls to #2 in the BCS and later #1. That team averaged 171yds passing and 185yds rushing. Defensively 189yds allowed passing and 74yds rushing. That young team went to the SEC Championship game and lost to a more veteran UF team but that set them up for the run that they have had since.

    UF came off a 7-6 record last year and started of ranked #23. Currently averaging 145yds passing and 223yds rushing on Offense and 189yds allowed passing and 107yds rushing on defense so far. Now, if UF makes it to the SEC Championship game for which I am hoping that will happen and faces a pretty veteran BAMA team then we all hope for a different outcome. However, that BAMA team set them up on the run that they have had recruiting and winning championships since that loss. If UF does suffer the same fate then we could be embarking on the next great championship run. I know, I know, it is a long way off to start thinking about the future but it feels good to have confidence in the staff and anticipate good things for the future of UF Football. One game @ a time like Champ said and UGA is up next. Lets keep charging ahead and do what UF has been successful in doing against UGA quite frequently for sometime now and that is WIN. Dam it’s good to be a Gator!!!!!!!

  18. Kyle says:

    ^^ what joe said

  19. BEAT UGA says:

    Time to win it in Jax. Coach Boom should be pumped and have his players ready. Remember, CWM has NEVER been on the winning side of this game. Not only are we playing for a spot in Atlanta, we’re trying to get Coach Boom his first win in this rivalry! GO GATORS!!

  20. Joe says:

    I love being a Gator and part of the Gator Nation but most of our fans sounded like a bunch of Negative Nancy’s at the beginning of the season. Prognosticators left and right. We’d lose here and here and we’d have no chance against anyone. FSU, LSU, SCAR would dominate us! This isn’t a ‘I told you so’ but I’m very happy to see Muschamp and this team give those of us who believed a reason – and humble all of those who lambasted this program. We’re never as good or as bad as one might think. And the best part of winning a championship is this… the growth and development of our team. This team definitely exceeded our expectations, something no one could have predicted, but I’m hoping the fans in Gator Nation can show up a little better next time the chips are stacked against us. Maybe instead of thinking we’re going to lose before we even play a game, we’ll take the season one game at a time and enjoy it for the journey it is.

  21. scooterp says:

    Joe, I’m not going to apologize for my skepticism at the beginning of the season. I wish we could 12-0 every season, but there was nothing that I saw last year, during spring or on opening day, for that matter, that any realist would have thought we would be where we are now. And we have a right to have high expectations and be critical when see a trainwreck, like last last year.

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