Live blog of today’s SEC football game between No. 5 LSU and No. 22 Florida from Steve Spurrier-Florida Field at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium on the UF campus in Gainesville:
UF won the coin toss and deferred to receive the second-half kickoff.
LSU drove quickly after the first-half kickoff, scoring on a four-yard run by running back Nick Brossette at the 11:43 mark. The 75-yard, 10-play drive was highlighted by a 38-yard completion from QB Joe Burrow to receiver Justin Jefferson on the first play of the march to the Florida 37.
UF stopped a promising LSU drive when end Jachai Polite stripped sacked Burrow at the UF 40 and defensive tackle Kyree Campbell recovered at the 33.
What went right: After giving up the early touchdown, the Florida defense turned things around in a big way. Jachai Polite had a sack/fumble that killed an LSU scoring drive inside the UF 25 on LSU’s second possession. From that point on in the quarter, the Tigers did nothing against the UF defense, forced into consecutive three-and-outs. Another big thing for the Gators was how they won the battle of field position.
What went wrong: The defense had some real problems early, including giving up a 38-yard pass play on the first play of the game. That sparked a lightning-fast LSU drive that culminated in a 6-yard touchdown run by Nick Brossette.
Play of the quarter: The sack/fumble by Polite that was recovered by defensive tackle Kyree Campbell. It was a huge play because the Tigers were able to take total control of the game. It switched the momentum for the rest of the quarter.
Trending: After winning the field-position battle, the Gators started to move the ball some on offense, finishing the quarter on the LSU 27. The Tigers won both lines of scrimmage early, but the Gators rebounded nicely and held their own over the second half of the quarter.
— Robbie Andreu
Lamical Perine scored on a one-yard run at the 12:30 mark to even the game at 7-all after Evan McPherson’s kick, which capped a nine-play, 43-yard drive.
Cole Tracy kicked a 33-yard field goal at the 3:10 mark to give LSU a 10-7 lead. It capped a 10-play, 63-yard drive that included a 21-yard run by Burrow to the UF 24.
Feleipe Franks connected with tight end Moral Stephens for a 3-yard TD with 1:09 left to cap a seven-play, 75-yard drive. Perine had a 23-yard run in the drive and Franks connected with receiver Josh Hammond with a 35-yard pass to the LSU 3.
What went right: A short field and a nice drive late in the first quarter, put the Gators on the LSU 23 to start the quarter. It took only five plays for UF to reach the end zone on a 1-yard TD run by Lamical Perine that tied the game 7-7. Later in the quarter, after struggling to sustain drives, Franks and the offense caught fire on a 75-yard touchdown drive that gave the Gators a 14-10 halftime lead. On the drive, Perine had a 23-yard run and caught an 11-yard pass. Franks then threw a perfect pass in the deep left flat that Josh Hammond caught for a 35-yard gain that put the Gators on the LSU 3. From there, Franks threw a 3-yard TD pass to tight end Moral Stephens. Before that drive, the Gators came up with a third-down stop that forced the Tigers to settle for a 33-yard field goal.
What went wrong: The Florida defense was fooled badly on a quarterback keeper by Joe Burrow on third-and-one that went for 21 yards and led to LSU’s chip-shot field goal.
Play of the quarter: The 35-yard strike from Franks to Hammond that set up the go-ahead touchdown.
Trending: The Gators, who struggled on the ground for much of the first half, finally started generating some push and yards late in the quarter. And Franks really seemed to settle down and start playing with a lot of confidence. UF clearly enters the third quarter with momentum — and the ball.
–– Robbie Andreu
LSU 7 3
Florida 0 14
Tracy helps LSU cut the deficit to 14-13 with a 42-yard field goal at the 4:16 mark.
What went right: On the first play of the half, Franks threw a perfect deep strike to Hammond for a 49-yard gain. A 15-yard penalty was added on, giving the Gators a first down on the LSU 13. That was the only thing that went right for the offense. The defense continued to play well, getting some big third-down stops to get the ball back for the offense.
What went wrong: The play after launching the perfect pass to Hammond, Franks lobbed the ball into a crowded end zone and it was intercepted by strong safety Grant Delpit for a touchback. It was a huge momentum killer, and the offense did almost nothing the rest of the quarter.
Play of the quarter: Franks’ 48-yard pass to Hammond.
Trending: The LSU defensive line started to take over late in the third quarter, disrupting Franks and the offense with heavy pressure. It looked like it is going to be difficult to sustain drives in the fourth quarter.
— Robbie Andreu
LSU 7 3 3
Florida 0 14 0
Brossette, who had runs of 39 and 47 yards in the drive, scored from a yard out for the TD and a 19-14 LSU lead with 11:14 left when the try for the 2-point conversion fell in complete on a Burrow pass.
Perine gave UF the lead back at 20-19 with a 2-yard scoring run with 8:48 left. The Gators went for the 2-point conversion and failed. The drive went 75 yards and took nine plays. The highlights were a 26-yard pass from Franks to Van Jefferson, a 17-yard run by Perine, Franks ran for 11 and then a hand off to tight end Lucas Krull, who threw back to Franks for a 15-yard gain to the LSU 2.
The announced attendance is 90,283.
Brad Stewart intercepted Burrow and returned it 25 yards for a TD with 1:45 left for a 27-19 UF lead after McPherson’s kick. After the score an unsportsmanlike penalty on UF.
Safety Donovan Stiner sealed the win with an interception of Burrow at the UF 34.
UF improved to 5-1 overall, 4-1 in the SEC. LSU falls to 5-1, 2-1.
What went right: After LSU took a 19-14 lead early in the quarter, the Florida offense, which had been struggling, answered with a near-flawless 75-yard touchdown to regain the lead. The score came on a 2-yard run by Lamical Perine, who also had runs of 17 and 13 on the drive. Then of course, there was the pick-six by New Orleans native Brad Steward with 1:45 left to play to pretty much seal the deal, even though it remained a one-score game. On LSU’s final possession, the Gators came up with two sacks, some hurries and the interception by safety Donovan Stiner to seal the deal.
What went wrong: For the first time since LSU’s first possession of the game, the defense was vulnerable, getting gashed in a big way on the ground on LSU’s scoring drive. The Gators gave up runs of 31 and 47 yards.
Play of the quarter: Stewart’s pick-six, which ignited The Swamp.
— Robbie Andreu
LSU 7 3 3 6 — 19
Florida 0 14 0 13 — 27