Grading the Florida Gators vs. Kentucky game

Each week following a Florida Gators game, ONLY GATORS Get Out Alive grades the team position-by-position based on each unit’s performance. This week, we look at how the Gators fared against the Kentucky Wildcats in the fourth game of the 2010-11 season, which took place at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium in Gainesville, FL.

QUARTERBACKS: A+
Standing on his own, redshirt junior John Brantley had an “A-” performance on Saturday, completing over 68 percent of his passes (24-of-35) for a career-high 248 yards, one touchdown and one interception. Though his 131.81 passer rating was his third-best of the season (due to the turnover), Brantley posted the best performance of his career and was instrumental in the Gators converting 7-of-11 third downs. Of course Brantley’s positive output was overshadowed by freshman Trey Burton, who accounted for six touchdowns on the day. Playing as single wing QB, running back, wide receiver and tight end, Burton rushed for 40 yards and five touchdowns, caught five balls for 37 yards and a touchdown and completed a pass on his only attempt for 42 yards. When you combine Brantley’s significant improvement with Burton’s stellar evening, there is truly no other grade to give his unit.

RUNNING BACKS: B+
After a monster 267-yard performance against South Florida, Florida’s running game came back down to earth against Tennessee. It returned to prominence once again against Kentucky, with all three of the team’s rushers posting good statistics. Junior Jeff Demps (who left the game in the second half with an injured foot) rushed eight times for 57 yards (7.1 average), redshirt senior Emmanuel Moody gained 46 yards on 10 carries (4.6 average) and sophomore Mike Gillislee ran the ball six times for 32 yards (5.3 average). Burton, a QB, scored all of the Gators’ rushing touchdowns, but these backs were instrumental in all six of UF’s scoring drives.

Read the rest of Florida’s grades from the Kentucky game after the jump…
Continue Reading » Grading the Florida Gators vs. Kentucky game

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Trey bien! Freshman Burton scores six times as No. 8/9 Gators trounce Wildcats 48-14

Freshman quarterback Trey Burton scored a school-record six touchdowns Saturday night as the No. 8/9 Florida Gators (4-0, 2-0 SEC) throttled the Kentucky Wildcats (3-1, 0-1 SEC) 48-14 at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium in Gainesville, FL.

Burton, who broke the record previously held by Heisman Trophy winner Tim Tebow, recorded five rushing touchdowns and caught another on a pass from redshirt junior quarterback John Brantley. He was responsible for all of the Gators offensive points on the night with the only other touchdown coming via an interception that redshirt sophomore cornerback Jeremy Brown grabbed by jumping a passing route in the second quarter.

In addition to Burton’s record night, Florida won its 24th straight game against Kentucky, 24th consecutive regular season game and 16th regular season Southeastern Conference game in a row. The win also marked No. 100 for head coach Urban Meyer, who became the sixth fastest coach in NCAA history to reach the milestone.

The Gators’ offense started the contest on fire, scoring 14 points in the first quarter on an 11-yard run and 11-yard reception by Burton. The points were the first scored in the opening quarter all season by Florida.

Down 21 in the second quarter, the Wildcats found themselves in the red zone for the first time all game. Instead of kicking a field goal on 4th down from the 11, Kentucky had wide receiver Chris Matthews pretend to run off the field on a field goal try. Instead, he split out wide and caught an open touchdown for their first score of the game.

The Wildcats would only reach the end zone once more in the contest with Matthews catching his second touchdown, this time on a 27-yard pass from Kentucky QB Mike Hartline with 6:58 remaining in the third quarter.

Florida’s defense was responsible for two picks Saturday with the second coming from sophomore linebacker Jon Bostic. Brown and Bostic joined senior safety Ahmad Black as Gators with three interceptions on the season. Florida’s defense has now accounted for a nation-high 12 picks and recorded UK’s first two turnovers of the season.

Brantley arguably had his best game of the season, going 24-of-35 for 248 yards, one touchdown and his first interception in his last 156 attempts. Sophomore running back Jeff Demps led Florida on the ground with eight carries for 57 yards but left the field with a sprained foot in the second quarter. Redshirt junior wide receiver Deonte Thompson brought in five balls for a team-high 86 yards, redshirt senior WR Carl Moore caught four passes for 72 yards (all first downs) and freshman WR Andre Debose recorded his first statistics of the season with four receptions for 36 yards.

Burton, the Gators’ star freshman, finished with 42 pass yards, 40 rushing yards and 37 reception yards to go along with his six touchdowns (five rushing).

For the Wildcats, top-tier athlete Randall Cobb threw an 11-yard touchdown and caught seven passes for 67 yards. Hartline finished 21-for-39 for 242 yards, one touchdown and two interceptions. RB Derrick Locke took 23 carries for 103 yards, and Matthews took care of the receiving catching six balls for 114 yards and both of his team’s scores.

Coming off perhaps their most impressive performance of the season, Florida will face their biggest test on the road next Saturday against the No. 1/1 Alabama Crimson Tide (4-0, 1-0 SEC) in Tuscaloosa, AL. Kickoff is set for 8 p.m., and the game will air live on CBS.

John Raoux/Associated Press

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Week 4: No. 8 Florida Gators vs. Kentucky Wildcats

Location: Ben Hill Griffin Stadium – Gainesville, FL [Capacity: 88,548]
Weather Forecast: 87°F, 20% chance of precipitation
Time: 7:00 p.m. (EST)

TV: ESPNU
Sirius/XM: 220/199
Online Video: N/A
Online Audio: Yahoo!
Live Updates: @OnlyGators

No. 8/9 FLORIDA GATORS KENTUCKY WILDCATS
Head Coach: Urban Meyer Head Coach: Joker Phillips
Record: 3-0 (1-0) Record: 3-0 (0-0)
Conference: Southeastern Conference: Southeastern
Roster | Schedule Roster | Schedule

Odds: Florida -14; O/U 50

HISTORY and STREAKS

» Florida has won 23 consecutive regular season games, 13-straight home games and 15 regular season SEC games in a row.
» The Gators are 43-17 all-time against the Wildcats and have won 23 games in a row against Kentucky. That is the second-longest active streak for a major Division I school against a major opponent in an uninterrupted series. UF is 24-4 vs. UK at home.
» After squeaking out a 45-37 victory over the Wildcats in 2007, the Gators have won the last two meetings by an average of 46 points.
» After all three of Tennessee’s scores last week, Florida answered with a score of its own on the drive immediately following.
» The Gators have gone 8-for-8 in the red zone over the last two games with seven touchdowns and a field goal. Florida’s red zone efficiency is 84.6 percent on the season including 10 touchdowns and one field goal.
» UF has scored 30+ points in four straight games, the longest active streak in the SEC.
» The Gators lead the nation with 10 interceptions through three games.
» Florida has committed a nation-low 86 turnovers since 2005 and has had 24 games in which they did not give up a single turnover (best in the nation). Comparatively, Kentucky has not turned the ball over this season and ranks 16th nationally and second in the SEC in turnover margin at +4.
» The Wildcats come into the game ranked second in the SEC in scoring offense (44.3 points) and total offense (497.3 yards).
» Kentucky is third in the SEC in total defense (257.7) first in passing defense (109.7).
» Gators head coach Urban Meyer comes into the contest with 99 career wins.
» Florida offensive coordinator Steve Addazio worked at Notre Dame in 2001 on the same staff as Kentucky head coach Joker Phillips. Phillips took over as wide receivers coach on the staff after Meyer left to take the top job with Bowling Green. Phillips also coached with UF strength and conditioning coach Mickey Marotti while both were with Cincinnati in 1998.
» Wildcats running backs coach Larry Brinson played for the Gators from 1972-76 and achieved 1,105 yards and nine touchdowns in his college career.
» Both teams’ coaching staffs will wear the Coach to Cure MD patches on Saturday to raise awareness and funding for Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy Research.

KEEP AN EYE ON…

» Redshirt junior quarterback John Brantley…who has thrown 140 consecutive passes without an interception and has a 15-1 TD/INT ratio while playing for the Gators.
» Junior running back Jeff Demps…who has achieved 150 or more all-purpose yards in each of the last three consecutive games. He is the first Florida player to do so since Percy Harvin in 2007. Demps has also led the Gators in rushing in every game this season with totals of 98, 139 and 73 yards. He ran the ball a career-high 26 times last week against Tennessee.
» Redshirt junior wide receiver Deonte Thompson…who had career-highs in receptions (six) and receiving yards (83) two weeks ago against South Florida. As Brantley’s primary pass catcher, 11 of Thompson’s 13 catches this season have been for first downs.
» Sophomore WR Omarius Hines…who appears to contribute in different ways each week for Florida. Hines took a fake punt 36 yards last week against Tennessee, setting up an important and game-changing scoring drive.
» Redshirt senior WR Carl Moore…who may have had the best game of his Gators career last Saturday catching two big first downs, each of which led to touchdowns.
» Freshman QB Trey Burton…who has played multiple other positions this season including H-back, WR, tight end, fullback and special teams. He has two Wildcat formation touchdowns already this year.
» Florida’s secondary…which has intercepted seven balls this season. Senior safety Ahmad Black (three), junior cornerback Janoris Jenkins (two) and redshirt sophomore CB Jeremy Brown are leading the way for the unit with their performances. Black is also tops in the SEC with 24 tackles on the year and is the conference’s active leader in interceptions (11) and interception return yards (233).
» Sophomore linebacker Jon Bostic…who has nabbed two interceptions in three games and been a tackling machine (14 in the last two contests) for UF.
» Kentucky athlete Randall Cobb…who is second on the team in rushing with 108 yards and one touchdown on nine carries; he is also UK’s leading receiver with 12 catches for 160 yards and two touchdowns. In addition to WR and RB, Cobb plays quarterback, returns punts and kicks and is the holder for extra points and field goals. He is second in team history with 28 touchdowns and is second on the team and third in the SEC in all-purpose yardage averaging 145.3 yards per game.
» Wildcats RB Derrick Locke…who is the SEC’s leading rusher, averaging 124 yards per game. He has rushed for more than 100 yards in all three games this season.

INJURIES and INACTIVES
Injuries
Probable – Redshirt senior RB Emmanuel Moody (thigh)
Doubtful – Freshman WR Chris Dunkley (hamstring)
Out – Redshirt sophomore left tackle Matt Patchan (wrist)

Inactives
(Will update closer to game time)

FLORIDA ON ESPN COLLEGE GAMEDAY

The Gators are not set to be featured in particular during ESPN’s College GameDay broadcast beginning at 9 a.m. on ESPNU (hosted by Erin Andrews) and continuing from 10 a.m. until noon on ESPN. However, the analysts will certainly be discussing the Florida-Kentucky game at various points during the broadcast. Notes in the section are as of press time. Will be updated if something else is learned closer to the game.

Read OGGOA’s Florida Gators vs. Kentucky Wildcats preview after the jump!
Continue Reading » Week 4: No. 8 Florida Gators vs. Kentucky Wildcats

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SIX BITS: Florida-Kentucky, Rainey, UT violations

1 » It has been more than 30 years and 15 games since the Kentucky Wildcats defeated the Florida Gators in The Swamp, and while head coach Urban Meyer has been tempering expectations noting his upcoming opponent’s recently blossoming offense, Kentucky is looking to make a statement this year. “[People are going to be skeptical] until we start beating quality opponents,” Wildcats running back Derrick Locke said Monday. “Even if we do beat some, it doesn’t matter. We’ve got to beat the teams we haven’t beat, and then we’ll get respect.” Head coach Joker Phillips agrees. “[Games like this are] what you come to Kentucky for,” he said. “This team will not be a team intimidated by The Swamp or playing in a game like this.”

2 » The last time Florida played Kentucky, the Gators dominated the contest 41-7 on the road in Lexington, KY. But the emotion most took away from that game was fright, not excitement, due to then-quarterback Tim Tebow being knocked out cold with a concussion. Wildcats defensive end Taylor Wyndham was responsible for the initial hit that knocked Tebow out but hopes he is not seen as a villain. “Hopefully [I get treated] just like anybody else,” Wyndham said of walking into Ben Hill Griffin Stadium on Saturday. “I’m sure I might get a couple boos, but it’s not a big deal.”

3 » Gainesville, FL, attorney Huntley Johnson, who is representing redshirt junior wide receiver Chris Rainey for his aggravated stalking charge, told the Palm Beach Post that his client has been overcharged. He will likely have some idea of where Rainey stands by the end of the week. “It doesn’t fit the elements of the crime,” Johnson said. “This kid was never going to hurt her. She knew he wasn’t going to hurt her. The fact that he misspoke in the text is not something to crucify this kid for. […] He’s devastated. He cared and cares tremendously for this woman and he cares about being a student at the University of Florida and he cares about being on the football team. […] This is not the kid to draw the line on. I’ve represented a lot of kids over the years. It’s an easy statement to throw stones at, but this kid is a great kid. Period.”

4 » As the Gators offense continues to progress week-to-week, one important factor that must grow is redshirt junior quarterback John Brantley’s trust in his receivers. After Saturday’s game against Tennessee, Brantley says that is as high as ever. “I didn’t put the ball in the best spot, but they made me look good, that’s for sure,” he said at a media availability Monday. “I trusted them before the game and now I really trust them. If I don’t make a perfect throw or anything like that, they’re going to make up for it, they’re going to make some great catches.”

5 » Documents obtained by ESPN on Monday revealed that the Tennessee Volunteers have “self-reported several NCAA violations involving its men’s basketball team, including nearly 100 impermissible phone calls to various recruits” over a two-year period. Additionally, the documents revealed that assistant coach Jason Shay “approved lodging expenses for the parents of three recruits [who] were allowed visits that extended beyond the NCAA mandate of 48 hours.” Though the Volunteers are chocking these mistakes up to “poor record keeping or miscommunication,” Tennessee’s subsequent punishments while they await a NCAA ruling may prove otherwise.

6 » OGGOA’s thoughts and condolences go out to the family and friends of former South Carolina Gamecocks WR Kenny McKinley, who was found dead of an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound suicide late Monday evening. He was 23. Head coach Steve Spurrier spoke about McKinkely and recently meeting with him. “I saw him here – he came to the Georgia game,” Spurrier said. “He seemed in good spirits. Great smile like he always had. I don’t understand it if it happened the way they say. It’s hard to comprehend. Kenny was certainly one of my favorite all-time players. He was a wonderful guy. It’s hard to figure out why this happened. It’s a sad day.”

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