A poised performance by redshirt junior back-up quarterback Tyler Murphy coupled with a breakthough game for sophomore running back Matt Jones and superb defensive effort led the No. 19/20 Florida Gators (3-1, 2-0 SEC) past the Kentucky Wildcats (1-3, 0-1 SEC) on Saturday at Commonwealth Stadium in Lexington, KY. After winning the game 24-7, Florida head coach Will Muschamp met with the media and provided some of his thoughts after the game.
NEXT GAME TIME ANNOUNCED
Florida will face Arkansas next Saturday on Oct. 5 at 7 p.m. in a game that will air live on ESPN2. It will be the first night game the Gators will play in that emanates from Ben Hill Griffin Stadium since Nov. 26, 2011.
HISTORY / STREAKS / STATS
» Florida extended its winning streak against Kentucky to 27 games dating back to 1987. It is the longest active streak against an annual opponent but the sixth-longest such streak all time.
» The Gators are 47-17 all-time against the Wildcats with a 19-10 edge in Lexington. UF is also 33-1 against UK since 1980.
» Florida beat Kentucky by fewer than 34 points for the first time since 2007 (45-37). UF has outscored UK 262-43 over the last six games (2008-13) and shutout its SEC East rival last year (38-0) for the first time since 1996.
» The Gators are 15-0 under Muschamp when rushing for more than 150 yards. Florida is also 17-3 when holding opponents to fewer than 21 points, 13-3 when an opponent rushes for fewer than 100 yards, 14-3 when scoring first and 17-1 when leading at half.
» UF is 17-1 against unranked opponents under Muschamp.
» Florida has forced at least one turnover in 15-straight games and nabbed at least one interception in seven consecutive contests.
» The Gators have forced the most interceptions among SEC teams this century (355).
» Florida has registered a nation-leading 103 interceptions since 2008. UF is also first in interceptions returned for touchdowns (16) and interception return yards (1,788).
» The Gators had their longest offensive scoring drive of the season in terms of time (7:47), yardage (93) and plays (13).
» Florida has not allowed Kentucky to score an offensive touchdown in 10-straight quarters dating back to 2011. The Wildcats’ sole score Saturday came on a fake field goal on their first drive of the game.
» The Gators were 4-for-4 in the red zone, 8-for-13 on third down and 2-for-2 on fourth down, but their defense held the Wildcats to 0-of-1, 1-of-8 and 2-of-4 in those categories.
» Florida never punted the ball and scored five times in eight drives. The other three included two end-of-halfs and one interception.
» UF outgained UK 402-173 overall and 246-48 on the ground. The Gators also dominated time of possession 38:09-21:51, though it was the least total time they possessed the ball in a game all season.
» Murphy started the game 11-of-11 for 120 yards and a touchdown, adding four carries for 20 yards and a rushing score in the first half. He eventually completed 13-straight passes before finishing his first career start 15-for-18 for 156 yards and added an interception in the second half.
» Jones registered career-highs in carries (28) and rushing yards (176), adding a touchdown to his total while averaging 6.3 yards per touch. It was the first 100-yard game of his career and second by a Florida rusher this season (Mack Brown).
» Freshman cornerback Vernon Hargreaves III registered his third career interception in four career games.
» Senior wide receiver Trey Burton scored his first touchdown of the season and matched a career-high with six receptions. His 66 receiving yards were a game-high. Burton has now scored eight of his 20 career touchdowns against Kentucky.
» Freshman WR Demarcus Robinson earned his first career reception and took it 10 yards on a third-down conversion.
“I’m very proud of our football team. It has been a long week for us, psychologically and mentally as much as anything. When you go through Jeff [Driskel]’s situation and Dominique [Easley]’s situation, which happened Tuesday night, very frustrating but you can’t always control your circumstances in life. You can control your vision.
“I told our players, ‘No excuses and no regrets.’ That’s just who we are. We have an expectation level here at the University of Florida on what we’re going to do and where we’re headed with our program. Very pleased with how our guys pulled together and the Gator Nation pulled together and came up here and did what we did. …
“Very proud of our football team. Showed a lot of resolve. They continue to come together in what we’re doing. Very proud of Tyler Murphy and his play.”
Read everything else Muschamp had to say about the game…after the break!
Continue Reading » 9/28: Florida at Kentucky post-game report