August 12, 2008

2008: Grading the non-conference schedules


We've created a vicious cycle in college football. Sure we all love the fact that just about every game is on TV nowadays. And because coaches and athletic directors want their teams to look good on TV, so they schedule a lot of limp fish opponents. Because wins beget bowl games. Bowl games begets job security. Job security begets more money. Thus, more money is insured by wins. You spin me right round baby right round, like a record.

No longer do college football teams across the country take chances. Or, well, rarely do they. Have you noticed how boring Septembers have become, except for the occasional Appy State upset of Michigan or Ohio State showdown with Texas?

Continue reading "2008: Grading the non-conference schedules" »

January 01, 2008

Michigan wins one for Carr

ORLANDO - Lloyd Carr went out a winner.

Michigan, paced by a methodical offensive attack, sent its retiring coach out victoriously by holding off Florida for a 41-35 win at the Capital One Bowl on Tuesday.

"This is extremely meaningful on a personal level," said the 62-year-old Carr, who compiled a 122-40 record in 13 years at Michigan. "To come out with an effort like this and finding a way to win creates memories we'll celebrate for years to come."

Continue reading "Michigan wins one for Carr" »

Florida turns it over on downs

ORLANDO, Fla. - Florida turned it over on four plays on its drive, giving Michigan the ball back at the Florida 24-yard line with less than 3 minutes left.

Florida still has all of its timeouts, so the Gators could hold Michigan to a field goal and get another shot, but Wolverines fans have to be smiling right now.

Michigan back on top

ORLANDO, Fla. - Florida's lead was short-lived, but they have a chance to get it back.

Michigan just scored on an 18-yard pass from Chad Henne to Adrian Arrington, who beat Florida corner Jacques Rickerson by about two steps for an easy catch.

Michigan leads 38-35 with 4:12 left, plenty of time for TIm Tebow to work his magic.

Harvin jets in

ORLANDO, Fla. - Put the Rose Bowl on hold, the Capital One Bowl ain't over yet.

Percy Harvin just scored his second touchdown of the game, this one on a 10-yard end-around jet run, to put the Gators up 35-31 with 5:49 left after Michigan quarterback Chad Henne threw an interception.

The Wolverines need a big drive here, will they get it?

Michigan inches ahead in final quarter

ORLANDO, Fla. - Field goals might not be enough to win this game, so Michigan is walking a tight rope.

The Wolverines just got a 37-yard field goal from K.C. Lopata to go up 31-28, but now Tim Tebow has the ball with 12:16 remaining.

And Tebow has Percy Harvin at his disposal. Harvin has 220 combined rushing and receiving yards on the day, and it's between him and Mike Hart as to who I'm tabbing on my ballott as game MVP.

Unusual turn of events ties it up

ORLANDO, Fla. - Here's the rundown of what led to this game being tied at 28-28.

1) Michigan is driving, looking to take a 35-21 lead, but Mike Hart fumbles for the second time today, the second time in over 1,000 carries. He fumbles it as he is stretching for a touchdown, so the ball goes into the end zone and Florida recovers.

2) Florida appears to have wasted the opportunity, going three-and-out, but executes a fake punt with former high school quarterback Chas Henry, the punter, completing a 15-yard pass to Aaron Hernandez.

3) To conclude a lengthy drive, Tim Tebow finds Andre Caldwell for a 14-yard scoring pass with less than 2 minutes left in the third quarter.

Something tells me the craziness is just beginning.

Tebow scores again

ORLANDO, Fla. - Just about the only thing TIm Tebow hasn't done at Florida is lead the Gators on a double-digit second-half comeback for a win.

Well, he's trying his best to check that off his list today.

Tebow just ran in from 1 yard out, bowling over Michigan linebacker Chris Graham, and brought the Gators to within 28-21 with 7:55 left in the third quarter at the Capital One Bowl.

On a side note, Florida wide receiver Percy Harvin looks poised to register the second game of 100 yards rushing and 100 yards receiving in Florida history.

Harvin unofficially has 103 rushing yards and 70 receiving yards so far today.

The other time a 100-100 happened? Harvin, against Vanderbilt earlier this year.

Michigan still rolling

ORLANDO, Fla. - Mike Hart just powered in his second score of the game, this of the 1-yard variety, to put Michigan up 28-14 with 12:50 left in the third quarter.

As has been his custom today, Hart looked for a Florida defender to jaw at after his run. He chose middle linebacker Brandon Spikes, who owns a 6-inch and 40-pound edge over Hart, maybe not such a good idea.

Capital One half update: Michigan has slight edge

ORLANDO, Fla. - Michigan has controlled the ball for most of the first half and is up 21-14 at the break as a result.

The Wolverines have successfully kept Tim Tebow off the field as much as possible with 48 offensive plays to Florida's 32 plays.

Chad Henne has looked very accurate, completing 15-of-24 passes for 220 yards and two scores. Mario Manningham has racked up 104 yards on 10 touches, including five runs. Michigan is looking to get him the ball any way possible.

Mike Hart has been contained for 60 yards on 15 carries, but he could break lose at any moment, you get the feeling.

On Florida's side, Tim Tebow has looked good when given a chance to showcase his passing skills with 110 yards through the air on 10-of-17 throwing. But he only got 18 yards on the ground, as Florida's running game has been stuffed save a Percy Harvin 66-yard run.

If Florida's defense can get off the field, the Gators could dominate the second half. However, Michigan's offense has looked every bit as effective as Florida's high-octane attack, maybe moreso.


ORLANDO, Fla. - The Capital One Bowl is offering fans the chance to display text messages on the Citrus Bowl scoreboard for the entire stadium to see.

Fans can text messages to 28553 at $1.99 per message. I have seen everything from the usual Go Blue! to inside jokes to a marriage proposal to Tim Tebow.

Oh yeah, there is a game going on. The teams are trading turnovers. Florida safety Major Wright just picked off Chad Henne on a trick play in which Henne handed off to a receiver, who threw it back to Henne near the Michigan sideline.

Henne slinged a pass downfield, but Florida had double coverage and Wright jumped in front of the receiver and landed with the ball at the Florida 1-yard line.

The game is tied at 14-14 with 3 minutes left in the half.

Breathe easy, Harvin looks fine

ORLANDO, Fla. - Percy Harvin was knocked out of the game following a 66-yard run, but he is re-entering the game.

Trainers looked at Harvin and talked with him on the sideline for a couple of plays as it appeared he just had the wind knocked out of him on a hit by Morgan Trent.

Florida is at the Michigan 4-yard line with 8:00 left in the half.

This one's for you, Coach Carr

ORLANDO, Fla. - Michigan running back Mike Hart, an outspoken backer of outgoing Coach Lloyd Carr, just scored on a 3-yard run to tie the game up at 14-14.

The run capped a 12-play, 56-yard drive for the Wolverines.

On an interesting note, Chad Henne tried to throw a pass to his All-America left tackle, Jake Long, on an unusual play. Unfortunately, Henne overthrew the 6-foot-7 Long for an incompletion.

Michigan can't keep up

ORLANDO, Fla. - Florida's speed is making Michigan look slow.

On the most recent display, the Wolverines had 22 yards of field to take down Florida wide receiver Andre Caldwell.

Caldwell zipped through all 22, barely being touched, and high stepped into the end zone to put the Gators up 14-7 with 14:48 left in the first half.

Tebow, Harvin answer for Florida

ORLANDO, Fla. - The Heisman jinx has yet to hit Tim Tebow.

Florida's record-setting sophomore just hit 2008 Heisman candidate Percy Harvin for a 10-yard touchdown pass.

Somehow, Michigan let Harvin find yards of open space in the middle of the field for a quick inside slant route for an easy score, I can't find one person in the press box who couldn't have made that throw.

Florida and Michigan are tied at 7-7 with 1:49 remaining in the first quarter at the Capital One Bowl.

Michigan steamrolls UF on opening drive

ORLANDO, Fla. - Lloyd Carr must have delivered one heck of a pregame speech.

The Michigan offense just drove 93 yards on 12 plays on the opening series to take a 7-0 lead over Florida at the Capital One Bowl.

The score came when quarterback Chad Henne connected with - who else? - Mario Manningham for a 21-yard bullett pass.

Florida had kept Manningham quiet in the passing game for the entire series before the score with freshman cornerback Joe Haden displaying shut-down coverage.

But, on the scoring play, Haden was not on coverage. Instead, Manningham beat No. 2 corner Wondy Pierre-Louis and a late-arriving free safety Major Wright.

Greetings from the Capital One Bowl

ORLANDO, Fla. - Happy New Year from the Capital One Bowl. In the next three hours, we'll find out whether Michigan or Florida will have a great New Year's Day.

Kickoff is coming in about 10 minutes, as the stadium is still filling up. On the way to the stadium, Michigan fans seemed to be out in full force. But the Gators have a much stronger contingent in the Citrus Bowl, where temperatures are in the 60s with partly cloudy skies.

Continue reading "Greetings from the Capital One Bowl" »

October 27, 2007

Dawgs down Gators

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - It took three years, but Mark Richt finally found the formula for beating Urban Meyer.

Continue reading "Dawgs down Gators" »

More Moreno

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Give Knowshon Moreno a game ball, heck, give him two.

Moreno, Georgia's redshirt freshman running back, just scored his third touchdown of the game as he went over 175 yards rushing on 30 carries, drilling a dagger into Florida's heart on a 3-yard run with 3:54 left.

The Bulldogs lead 42-30 with 3:54 left, and this game appears to be over.

Florida answers

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Florida is still in it.

Tim Tebow just ran in from three yards out, and even though the Gators missed a two-point conversion attempt, they cut the lead to 35-30 with 9:40 left.

Now we'll have to see if the Gators can finally stop Georgia's offense. The odds are not in Florida's favor.

Georgia takes momentum back

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Georgia fans are rejoicing.

Quarterback Matthew Stafford just connected with Mikey Henderson for a 53-yard touchdown pass with 11:03 left in the fourth quarter.

Georgia now leads 35-24. The drive came after Georgia's defense held on a failed fourth-down try by the Gators.

The Bulldogs' defense has hurried Tim Tebow all day, phasing Florida's sophomore star, while the Georgia offense has run at will to set up the occasional deep pass.

The Gator Boys are back

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Percy Harvin is back in, and Tim Tebow is back running.

And Florida is back in this game.

Tebow just ran in from 2 yards out to bring the Gators to within 28-24 midway through the third quarter.

Harvin, who left the game with an arm injury for a couple plays on the drive, came back with a long sweep to help set up Tebow's score.

Georgia takes control

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- The second half has not started well for the Gators.

Georgia opened the third quarter with a touchdown pass from Matthew Stafford to Brandon Southerland to go up 28-17.

On Florida's first play of its ensuing drive, Percy Harvin had to be helped off the field with an apparent arm injury. He looks to be fine on the sideline, however and should return.

Georgia leads at end of wild half

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Just about everybody, from players to fans to referees, especially referees, needed this 20-minute break.

Continue reading "Georgia leads at end of wild half" »

What in the name of Wondy Pierre-Louis?

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Things are getting pretty crazy here, and it's only 4:30.

Matthew Stafford has two touchdowns on two passes, but one of them just went to Florida cornerback Wondy Pierre-Louis, who returned an interception 25 yards for a score.

Of course, a personal foul penalty was called on Pierre-Louis for his acrobatic flip into the end zone.

The game is tied at 14-14 early in the second quarter.

Penalties, scores galore

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Georgia now leads 14-7 after an 84-yard bomb from Matthew Stafford to Mohamed Massaquoi, a career-long for both players.

There have also been too many penalties to count - Georgia has kicked off once from its 15-yard line and once from its 7.5-yard line and just racked up two personal foul face mask penalties on one play.

Florida just stalled on its drive and is ready to punt as the first quarter came to end.

Georgia a little excited

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Did I just see that?

Georgia just ran in for a touchdown, and the entire team came on to the field to celebrate - the entire team - as if it was a walk-off win instead of a first-quarter score.

It was like something out of "The Replacements."

It dumbfounded Florida coach Urban Meyer, who quickly got his team together to get pumped up again before the ensuing kickoff.

Georgia, which ran nine straight times on its opening drive, leads 7-0 with 6 minutes left in the first quarter.

Party Time in Jacksonville

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Everybody is partying now, but half will be drinking away their sorrows five hours from now.

Continue reading "Party Time in Jacksonville" »

October 20, 2007

Gators' win shakes up standings

LEXINGTON, Ky. - Nobody stormed the field at Commonwealth Stadium on Saturday night, but the result still shook the college football landscape and left lasting ramifications.

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Just score, baby

LEXINGTON, Ky. - Forget trying to run out the clock. The Florida Gators decided to run up the score instead.

Florida all but clinched a win over Kentucky has Tim Tebow ran in from 2 yards out with 1:33 remaining in the game, giving the Gators a 45-31 lead.

On the previous play, instead of going conservative, Tebow threw deep to Percy Harvin for a back breaking 40-yard gain.

Can Florida run the clock out?

LEXINGTON, Ky. - Kentucky has regrouped to cut the lead down to 38-31, but will Andre' Woodson get a chance to complete his comeback?

The Gators just got the ball back with 3:35 remaining in the game after Dicky Lyons Jr. caught his third touchdown pass of the game, a 7-yard score.

It will all come down to Woodson's UF counterpart, Tim Tebow, who likely will be given every opportunity to run the clock out on the Gators' current possession.

Kentucky has two timeouts left.

Gators still up after three quarters

LEXINGTON, Ky. - Florida has a 7-point lead and the ball near midfield with one quarter left.

Now we will find out if the Gators can win a game in the fourth quarter. They were not able to do so in their last two games against LSU and Auburn.

Andre' Woodson and Kentucky seem to be back on track on the offensive end, so Tim Tebow cannot let up.

Florida extends lead

LEXINGTON, Ky. - Florida and Kentucky are exchanging scores in the third quarter.

Continue reading "Florida extends lead" »

The jump pass ... again

LEXINGTON, Ky. - After Tim Tebow's sneak failed to do the job, offensive coordinator Dan Mullen turned to the only other sure-fire goal line play in his playbook - the jump pass.

Continue reading "The jump pass ... again" »

Florida picks up the intensity

LEXINGTON, Ky. - Let the scoring begin.

Florida just took a 14-7 lead as Louis Murphy beat double coverage for a 66-yard touchdown catch from Tim Tebow with 11 seconds left in the first quarter.

Continue reading "Florida picks up the intensity" »

Kentucky strikes first

LEXINGTON, Ky. - Andre' Woodson just directed a 9-play, 78-yard drive culminating in a 33-yard deep route to Dicky Lyons Jr. to put Kentucky up 7-0 over the Florida Gators.

The Gators have an obvious weakness at nickel cornerback, where Jacques Rickerson was beat badly by Lyons for the score.

Florida went three-and-out on its first drive.

Preparing for a shootout

LEXINGTON, Ky. - The scoreboards seem to be working at Commonwealth Stadium, and that's a very good thing.

Continue reading "Preparing for a shootout" »

October 07, 2007

LSU-Florida: The party is going on in Baton Rouge

BATON ROUGE, La. - That big, giant tremor you just felt was another jolt to the national championship picture.

The LSU Tigers fought, scratched, huffed, grunted, stuffed and converted their way to an exhausting 28-24 win over No. 9 Florida tonight in Tiger Stadium setting off a celebration that could be felt from La. to L.A.

(LSU players celebrate the win over Florida in front of the student section)

Coupled with USC's absolutely inexcusable loss to a weakened Stanford team, the Tigers will most assuredly gobble up the remaining first place votes in all of the polls this week.

This was a game of attrition. Florida's second half collapse and LSU's dogged determination.

Continue reading "LSU-Florida: The party is going on in Baton Rouge" »

October 06, 2007

LSU-Florida: Tigers don't miss this opportunity, cut it to three.


They had to work for it, but LSU gets six points. And the extra point

This time, the Tigers don't screw around with missed field goals. After Tim Tebow rifled the ball off Percy Harvin's helmet and the Tigers intercepted, LSU went the remaining 27 yards to put this game back into reach at 24-21.

Matt Flynn hit Demetrius Boyd with a fourth-down TD pass to cap the drive. Had that ball not been caught, it could've been curtains for the Tigers. But instead, the purple and gold are given new life.

The drive goes 27 yard, 9 plays, 1:50. There is now 10:15 left in the game and Tebow has to be kicking himself for not using any touch on that intercepted pass. This should be a fun ending. 92,910 are in attendance, they just announced.

LSU-Florida: Don't think I've ever heard Tiger Stadium THIS quiet.


Okay, I spoke way too quickly after they announced that USC-Stanford score.

Florida just showed who the champions are with that quick 5-play drive. This place is quiet again... except for the fans in blue and orange.

75 yards, 5 plays, with a 37 yard pass from Tim Tebow to Cornelius Ingram. And I'm not sure if I've EVER seen a receiver more wide open since Irving Fryer dropped that would-be touchdown in the Orange Bowl against Miami (but he had money on that game.).

LSU-Florida: Possibly the loudest I've heard an LSU crowd


LSU scores a touchdown. USC loses. And now the Cajuns are goin' freakin' craaaa-zaaaaay!

I've been going to LSU games since 1978 and this may be as loud as I've ever heard it. All 92,000+ are abusing their lungs right now.

LSU-Florida: If I could be two places at once, I'd be here and at the Coliseum in L.A.


LSU just put together their best drive of the night, going 70 yards on 15 plays with a Keiland Williams touchdown to make this a ball game again. Matt Flynn pulled off another great fake field goal to make a first down and keep the drive alive. And that pass interference on the Gators was really bad. Florida still leads 17-14, but it's getting hairy now with the crowd back into it.

However, the buzz in the press box is all about that unbelievable Stanford-USC ending. Did THAT really happen? My gawd! LSU just announced the score and the crowd went nuts.

Tigers kept the ball for 8:12.

LSU-Florida: Tebow to teammates, "We STILL own this #!@%in' place!"


It's now 17-7 Florida ahead at the half. I've been able to obtain an on-field arm band and snapped this pic of Tim Tebow immediately after he scored the last touchdown before the half. He was getting in the face of his offensive teammates and yelled the above demand to them.


LSU actually holds an advantage of 177 to 172 yards in total offense. But obviously, dumb mistakes are hurting the Tigers again, including an interception, five penalties (Gators have none) and Brandon LaFell has dropped a few passes that would've helped their cause.

Tebow, to the surprise of exactly no one, leads the Gators with 44 yards rushing and capable 7-of-13 passing for 89 yards.

Matt Flynn is 8-of-15 for 102 yards so far. But has been a bit on the shaky side with some pressure. He also seems to be "locked in" on one receiver every time he drops back. Trindon Holliday has only touched the ball four times on offense and has never been able to get "in space" as those awful announcers like to say.

LSU-Florida: Tigers have some roar. Pull within 3.


Like those 'Lectric Shave ads from the 70s, LSU says "Thanks, I needed that." Only they didn't get a slap of after shave, they gave a slap to the Florida defense, going 80 yards in 16 plays in 7:37. Ryan Perrilloux goes the final yard on another option for the TD.

It's now Florida 10, LSU 7. 6:08 left in the half.

By the way, it's never a bad time to include a picture of CBS sideline reporter Tracy Wolfson. She rocks man.

LSU-Florida: Hmmm. LSU defense being exposed.


Bo Pelini, your pedigree as a Defensive Coordinator is being questioned. Florida now up 10-0 at 13:45 of the 2nd quarter.

Tim Tebow continues to make a living over the middle against the Tiger defense, using Harvin and Co. on quick slants where they are finding an open lane. He also showed how plucky he was with that dink touchdown to Kehstan Moore. (By the way, don't you hate the word "plucky"?)

77 yards on 12 plays, 7:03... and a whole lot of authority for Florida right now.

LSU-Florida: Uh-oh, you can sense the crowd wants Perrilloux


So Matt Flynn has made a couple of poor throws, including a pass behind the receiver that turned into a pick. And Ryan Perrilloux has made some nice runs on some option plays, looking J.C. Watts-like.

After Flynn's last incompletion you could hear the crowd moan with disapproval. Although he did make a nice throw to LaFell on an inside screen for a first down. LaFell then reprised his role from the Tulane game by dropping yet another pass that would've been a first down.

Some boo-birds are out for LSU? Geez people, get real, will ya'?

LSU-Florida: I give the Gators a B grade on that drive


Florida decided to surprise LSU with something they might not have expected, the short passing game. Tebow threw a couple of 8-12 yard passes befor the Gators were held to an opening drive field goal.

47 yards, 10 plays, 3:41
31 yard field goal by Jay Ijjas.

LSU, it's your turn now.

And is that USC-Stanford score right? 9-0 at the half? The Tiger Stadium P.A. should announce that score so the Tiger fans get even more into a frenzy.

LSU-Florida: Mike makes his appearance, kick off soon

And might I add, this stadium is LOUD as a MOTHER!

Typical LSU nighttime crowd. Drunken madness!

The newest Mike The Tiger made his first appearance in the stadium tonight. Cute cheerleaders too. Hi girls!

LSU-Florida: Jambalaya, beer, Cowboy Mouth. The pre-game is ON in Baton Rouge


No matter where you go around the LSU campus, you're within an antacids throw of a whole lot of wicked food, free booze and drunken cajuns willing to share their legendary hospitality.

It also helps that the New Orleans country-punk band Cowboy Mouth has helped whip the crowd into a frenzy with a quick gig in front of the Pete Maravich Assembly Center.

(Drummer Fred LeBlanc and the fetching Regina Zernay on bass for Cowboy Mouth)

The band is led by drummer Fred LeBlanc, who formerly banged the skins for Dash Riprock in the 80s and 90s. The were rockin' good, including a unique version of "Will you be my girl."

Meanwhile, the LSU band just entered Tiger Stadium after marching down Victory Hill through the huge throngs of LSU fans. If this little exhibition is any indication, tonight's crowd is going to be freakin' nuts! It's going to make a Jimi Hendrix concert sound like prayer service.

Continue reading "LSU-Florida: Jambalaya, beer, Cowboy Mouth. The pre-game is ON in Baton Rouge" »

October 05, 2007

LSU-Florida: The Day Before Preview

BATON ROUGE, La. - In the words of that immortal 60s and 70s game show To Tell The Truth, will the REAL Southeastern Conference power please stand up?

The last few weeks has shown us that both LSU and Florida have been imposters of their usual selves. This game should change that lethargic, elsewhere look these teams have had recently. 92,000+ screaming fans will make sure of that.

Continue reading "LSU-Florida: The Day Before Preview" »

October 04, 2007

Kentucky evens it up

Columbia, S.C. -- Eighteen is the hot number for Kentucky right now.

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South Carolina leads after one

Columbia, S.C. -- Despite shoddy play from quarterback Chris Smelley, South Carolina leads Kentucky 10-3 after one quarter.

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South Carolina scores first

Columbia, S.C. -- Eric Norwood scooped up an Andre Woodson fumble at the two-yard line and took it into the end zone to give the Gamecocks a 7-0 lead with 10:53 left to play.

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Kentucky defers

Columbia, S.C. -- Kentucky won the toss, and like clockwork, head coach Rich Brooks deferred to the second half.

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Pregame in Columbia

Columbia, S.C. -- Kentucky and South Carolina can no longer fly under the radar in the Southeastern Conference. Neither can the weather.

Continue reading "Pregame in Columbia" »

September 29, 2007

Byrum wins it for Auburn

GAINESVILLE, Fla. -- Auburn did it again.

Continue reading "Byrum wins it for Auburn" »

Florida cuts lead to 17-10

GAINESVILLE, Fla. -- The crowd is getting amped, and the Gators are getting close.

Thanks to a 6-yard touchdown pass from TIm Tebow to Cornelius Ingram, Florida has narrowed the deficit to 17-10 with 14:56 remaining in the fourth quarter.

This is setting up to be an amazing finish.

Auburn answers

GAINESVILLE, Fla. - Auburn just regained its two-touchdown lead with a 30-yard field goal by Wes Byrum with 6:39 left in the third quarter.

The Tigers drove 52 yards on 10 plays and brought in backup Kodi Burns for a Tim Tebow-like sneak at the Gators' 9-yard line, but he was stuffed for a 5-yard loss to help force the field goal.

Auburn leads 17-3.

Florida gets some momentum back

GAINESVILLE, Fla. -- The host Gators opened the second half by forcing an Auburn three-and-out and putting up their first points of the game on a 24-yard Joey Ijjas field goal.

With 11:50 left in the third quarter, Auburn has possession at its own 30-yard line to start its second drive of the half.

All Tigers at halftime

GAINESVILLE, Fla. -- The first half eerily resembled Auburn's win over Florida from a year ago.

Continue reading "All Tigers at halftime" »

Questionable call on Auburn's 2nd TD

GAINESVILLE, Fla. -- Auburn running back Ben Tate just scored a controversial 3-yard touchdown run with less than 7 minutes remaining in the first half.

Tate ran through the right side of Auburn's offensive line, dived over a pile of players and reached his arm over the goal line for a score.

The play was reviewed and it was apparent on replays that Tate's knee hit the ground before he stretched for the score.

Still, the play was upheld at Auburn leads 14-0.

Auburn leads at end of first quarter

GAINESVILLE, Fla. -- In the first quarter, Florida's high-powered spread attack was showcased for all of six plays as Auburn played keep away with the football.

The Tigers are up 7-0 with 13:41 left in the second quarter. Florida has the ball at its own 28-yard line.

Could Caldwell play?

GAINESVILLE, Fla. -- Injured Florida wide receiver Andre Caldwell, expected to miss the game with a sprained MCL, is in pads and catching passes in pregame warmups.

Caldwell is the Gators' top receiving threat and would provide a huge boost for quarterback Tim Tebow if he indeed does play, and it looks like he will.

Florida looks for revenge against Auburn

GAINESVILLE, Fla. -- Nothing went right for the mighty Gators on Oct. 14 at Jordan-Hare Stadium.

Continue reading "Florida looks for revenge against Auburn" »

September 22, 2007

Tebow carries Gators in first road start

OXFORD, Miss. -- With the game on the line, Tim Tebow walked up to his coach and got in his face.

The baby-faced 20-year-old quarterback wasn't about to lose his first road start.

He made sure his 43-year-old coach knew that.

Continue reading "Tebow carries Gators in first road start" »

Ole Miss fake punt doesn't work

OXFORD, Miss. - Jermaine Cunningham made a key stop to save the Gators.

On a fake punt pass to Robert Lane from Justin Sparks, the defensive lineman's tackle gave Florida the ball at the Ole Miss 41.

It looks to be over.

It's still close

OXFORD, Miss. - Florida is giving Ole Miss life.

The Gators just got a Joey Ijjas field goal to go up 30-24 with 4:59 left after stalling out at the Ole Miss 8-yard line.

Ole Miss-Florida Halftime Update

OXFORD, Miss. - Ole Miss came to play.

The Rebels displayed a steady offense and a bend but don't break defense for the first half and headed to the locker room down 14-6 after two quarters.

Continue reading "Ole Miss-Florida Halftime Update" »

Tebow does it himself

OXFORD, Miss. - Florida quarterback Tim Tebow just carried two Ole Miss defenders for three yards and into the end zone for a rushing touchdown.

The Gators went 98 yards on 14 plays to go up 14-6 with 7 minutes left in the half. After a slow start, the Gators look to be rounding into form in the second quarter.

Injuries, Injuries

OXFORD, Miss. - Florida wide receiver Percy Harvin just went down on the field after catching a screen pass.

After a brief meeting with trainers, he is running off on his own power, and one of Florida's worst nightmares has been averted. He should be OK.

Florida is up 7-6 and driving in Mississippi territory with 8 minutes left in the half.

Ole Miss CB Dustin Mouzon just went down too, and also ran off on his own power.

Harvin does his thing

OXFORD, Miss. - Just when you thought Florida was in a little bit of trouble, Percy Harvin came alive.

Harvin caught six passes on a 10-play, 77-yard touchdown drive culminating in a 19-yard screen reception for a score.

Harvin beat six Rebels defenders for the touchdown.

Florida leads 7-3 with 14:52 left in the half.

Ole Miss scores

OXFORD, Miss. - For the first time all year, Florida is trailing.
Joshua Shene just knocked a 40-yard field goal to give the Rebels a 3-0 lead with 5 minutes left in the first quarter.

Mississippi went 37 yards on nine plays for the score. A couple Florida penalties helped the cause, but Seth Adams looked good and had plenty of time in the pocket.

Florida's defense - outside of freshman cornerback Joe Haden - did not perform well at all on that drive.

Adams starts

OXFORD, Miss. - Quarterback Seth Adams is toughing it out and starting for Mississippi.

Florida kicker Joey Ijjas missed a 42-yard field goal short and left on the Gators' first drive, ruining a 55-yard kickoff return by Brandon James.

Mississippi just went thee-and-out, and Florida has the ball at its 28-yard line.

It's scoreless with 11:20 remaining in the first quarter.

Schaeffer taking pregame snaps

OXFORD, Miss. - Brent Schaeffer just took the snaps at the end of Mississippi's pregame warm-ups. It looks like he's going to start.

I did not see Seth Adams anywhere near the offense. Both teams have gone back to the locker rooms in preparation for the game.

Florida-Mississippi Preview

OXFORD, Miss. - Welcome to the marquee SEC game of the week.
Ok, well, maybe not.

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September 15, 2007

Florida-Tennessee: Final Recap

GAINESVILLE, Fla. - Tony Joiner sealed Florida's 39-point win with a kiss.

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Florida putting on the finishing touches

GAINESVILLE, Fla. - It's just about over.

Backed into their own end zone, Florida drove 99 yards on nine plays to go up 42-20. Then Erik Ainge threw the ball away on fourth down, handing the ball back to the Gators with 12 minutes left.

Percy Harvin keyed Florida's scoring drive, snaring a 49-yard catch on the first play of the series.

Then he ran into the end zone, splitting Tennessee defenders and spinning his way to the goal line.

Harvin has been a beast today. He has been more present in today's game than the first two contests combined.

That is the caveat with Harvin. Urban Meyer likes to save him for big games because of his chronic leg and knee problems. After watching today's performance, I can't blame Meyer for that strategy.

Florida-Tennessee: Final Recap

GAINESVILLE, Fla. - Tony Joiner seeled Florida's 39-point win with a kiss.

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A defensive shootout

GAINESVILLE, Fla. - Can there be such a thing as a defensive shootout?

In a game billed as an offensive coordinator's dream and a defensive coordinator's nightmare, the defenses are winning out here in the second half between Florida and Tennessee.

The Gators just answered Eric Berry's 96-yard interception return with an 18-yard fumble recovery by linebacker Dustin Doe for a score.

Arian Foster did not get a clean handle of Erik Ainge's handoff as the ball flew forward a few yards off of his hands.

Foster was quickly pounded into the ground.

Doe was the beneficiary, as the ball bounced right into his grasp and he scampered in.

Florida leads 35-20 with 5 minutes left in the third.

Tebow looks human

GAINESVILLE, Fla. - Wait a second, Tim Tebow threw an interception, that's right, an interception.

Tennessee cornerback Eric Berry stepped in front of Tebow's receiver, Riley Cooper, and ran it back 96 yards, juking out Tebow on the path to the north end zone. That brings Tennessee to within 8 points at 28-20 early in the third quarter.

The play was a clear miscommunication between Tebow and Cooper, as Cooper zigged than started a zag, when Tebow thought Cooper would stop after his zig, if that makes any sense.

That is Tebow's first interception in his last 79 attempts, dating back to last year, and only the second of his short career at Florida.

Tennessee feeling the blues

GAINESVILLE, Fla. - Florida's offense has finally been stopped, not by Tennessee, but by the halftime whistle.

Tim Tebow and Co. scored again with less than 2 minutes remaining in the half, as Florida's sophomore quarterback found wideout Cornelius Ingram in the left corner of the end zone.

Tennessee answered with an Erik Ainge-Chris Brown 15-yard connection for a touchdown with :25 seconds left.

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Who needs running backs?

GAINESVILLE, Fla. - Tim Tebow just jumped into the arms of Jonathan Hefney. There's no other way to say it.

Tebow scored Florida's third touchdown on a quarterback sneak, leaping towards the best defensive back in the SEC and capping a nine-play, 58-yard drive that put Florida up 21-6.

Tebow carried four times for 39 yards on the drive, where at one point Florida hit a mark of 11 straight runs by non-running backs.

Another field goal for Tennessee

GAINESVILLE, Fla. - Here's the early summary for the Tennessee-Florida game: Florida is scoring touchdowns, and Tennessee is scoring field goals.

The Volunteers just drove 77 yards only to stop for a 22-yard Daniel Lincoln field goal and cut the Gators' lead to 14-6. Erik Ainge picked apart the Florida secondary, and Arian Foster found holes in the defensive line.

But the Florida defense held strong in the red zone.

Yes, Tebow can throw

GAINESVILLE, Fla. - Tim Tebow has decided to start passing.

After fruitless series of him taking sneaks, Tebow aired it out on Florida's last drive, culminating in a 30-yard touchdown pass to Riley Cooper.

Cooper beat Tennessee freshman Eric Berry, who moved from safety to corner for this game to replace Antonio Gaines.

On the play before the score, Tebow found Cornelius Ingram for a long grab.

Florida leads 14-3 at the end of the first quarter.

Tennessee answers

GAINESVILLE, Fla. - Tennessee kicker Daniel Lincoln just hit a 27-yard field goal to cut Florida's lead to 7-3 with under 2 minutes left in the first quarter.

Lincoln is playing 30 minutes from his hometown of Ocala.

In other news, Florida cornerback Markihe Anderson, who picked off an Erik Ainge pass earlier, limped off with an apparent knee injury.

Anderson likely aggravated a knee sprain that kept him out of the team's opener. His leg is getting wrapped up on the sideline. It doesn't look like he'll come back this half.

Pouncey heads to locker room

GAINESVILLE, Fla. - We have our first injury.

Florida freshman guard Maurkice Pouncey was just helped off the field, straight to locker room by a couple of Florida doctors.

Sophomore Maurice Hurt replaced him in the lineup before Florida had to punt. Hurt is a pretty experienced backup and should be able to handle the job.

Midway through the first quarter, Florida still leads 7-0 on the Brandon James punt return for a score.
So much for the offensive shootout everyone expected.

Markihe's impact

GAINESVILLE, Fla. - Few expected Florida cornerback Markihe Anderson to make an impact today.
Well, he's proven everyone wrong.

Anderson just picked off an Erik Ainge pass in the red zone, snaring the ball away from Tennessee receiver Quintin Hancock.

Anderson, Florida's top corner, barely played last week with a knee sprain and did not start today. He's only playing nickel, but he's hard to miss now.

Tim Tebow is taking his first snaps of the day now.

To no surprise, he has sneaked both times.

Dueling returns

GAINESVILLE, Fla. - After Tennessee went three-and-out, return specialist Brandon James just put Florida on the board with an 83-yard punt return.

James, a sophomore, caught the ball, broke left, came to a complete stop and ran up the middle, side-stepping punter Britton Colquitt on his way to a score.

James broke out last year against Tennessee with a return for a score that was nullified by a penalty and another where the kicker tripped him up.

On the ensuing kickoff, LaMarcus Coker takes it back 77 yards for Tennessee. The Volunteers are in position to tie it up.


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