FINAL: No. 19 Florida 35, South Carolina 31

UF's Kadarius Toney scored on an 18-yard pass play from QB Feleipe Franks in the third quarter Saturday against South Carolina at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium. [Lauren Bacho/Staff photographer]

Live blog from Steve Spurrier-Florida Field at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium on the UF campus in Gainesville for the SEC college football game between South Carolina and Florida:

First quarter

Jake Bentley completed a 2-yard TD pass to tight end Jacob August on third down at the 9:17 mark on the Gamecocks’ first possession, which covered 83 yards on 13 plays.

South Carolina went up 14-0 on its second possession on a 19-yard TD pass from Bentley to tight end Kyle Markway at the 4:51 mark. Running back A.J. Turner highlighted the six-play, 84-yard drive with runs of 30 and 22 yards.

It would be a good idea for the Gators to cover the tight end.

“Florida’s defense looks unorganized and soft. It’s hard to believe this is the same group that played so well against Miss. St. and LSU. Five missed tackles so far and two South Carolina TDs to uncovered receivers. This isn’t the crowd’s fault.” — Pat Dooley


South Carolina        14

Florida                       0             

Second quarter

Running back Lamical Perine scored from two yards out to help UF cut the deficit to 14-7 at the 13:46 mark to cap a 13-play, 75-yard drive in 6:05.

UF QB Feleipe Franks runs in from 10 yards out to knot the score at 14-all at the 8:58 mark and cap a 69-yard drive that takes eight plays.

The Gamecocks answered when Bentley scored on a one-yard dive at the 4:21 mark to cap a 12-play, 71-yard drive and a 21-14 lead. USC’s three scoring drives totaled 31 plays and 238 yards.

What went right: The Gators, who appeared dead after falling behind 14-0 midway through the first quarter, came back to life and got themselves back in the game. Lamical Perine finished off the drive started late in the first quarter with a 2-yard TD run. Then the defense got a three-and-out and the offense rolled right back down the field, mostly on the ground, to tie the game on an inspired 10-yard run by quarterback Feleipe Franks.

What went wrong: After the Gators tied the game with Franks’ TD, the defense went back to its earlier form and collapsed against the big-play USC offense.The Gamecocks carved up the Gators and retook the lead on a 1-yard TD run by Bentley.

Play of the quarter: A 21-yard run up the middle by Jordan Scarlett on UF’s game-tying drive.

Trending: The Gamecocks regained the momentum they’d lost earlier in the quarter with the go-ahead TD drive.

 — Robbie Andreu      

South Carolina        14    7

Florida                       7    7        

Third quarter

On the Gators’ first series of the half, freshman kicker Evan McPherson missed a 41-yard field goal attempt wide right. Only his second miss of the season.

Parker White kicked a 34-yard field goal at the 9:19 mark to put USC up 24-14. The scoring series was set up when Kadarius Toney muffed a punt and it was recovered at the UF 31 by Deebo Samuel.

Rico Dowdle scored on a four-yard run to give South Carolina a commanding 31-14 lead at the 4:41 mark. The key play was an 89-yard pass and run from Bentley to Samuel to the UF 7.

Franks and Toney teamed up for an 18-yard scoring pass play to cut the deficit to 31-21 with 56 seconds left in the period, it capped a 10-play, 75-yard drive.

What went right: The slumbering offense woke up and put together a touchdown drive in the closing minutes of the quarter to keep the Gators at least within striking distance. The score came on an 18-yard screen pass from Franks to Kadarius Toney.

What went wrong: Before that late TD, everything. Evan McPherson missed a 42-yard field goal attempt on UF’s first possession, Toney muffed a punt and the defense continued to give up explosive plays, including an 89-yard pass from Bentley to Deebo Samuel that set up a 3-yard TD run that put the Gamecocks up 31-14. While the defense was clueless, the offense was basically motionless until the final drive. The offense also hurt itself with penalties.

Play of the quarter: A 15-yard pass from Franks to wide receiver Trevon Grimes that launched UF’s scoring drive.

Trending: The Gators gained some momentum and were still in the game heading to the fourth.

— Robbie Andreu

South Carolina        14    7    10

Florida                       7    7      7 

Fourth quarter

Perine scored on a 23-yard run at the 11:03 mark to trip the deficit to 31-28. The score capped an eight-play, 89-yard drive.

Franks scored on a 1-yard dive to put UF up 35-31 with 4:09 remaining in the game. The score capped a 10-play, 66-yard drive to give the Gators their first lead of the game.

CJ Henderson intercepted Bentley to all but end the game.

UF ends a two-game slump to improve to 7-3 overall and cap its SEC season at 5-3, while USC falls to 5-4, 4-4.

What went right: Everything. The offense went up and down the field, mostly on the ground, the defense got stops and a huge turnover (an interception by CJ Henderson late) and the Gators rallied to clinch one of the greatest comebacks in school history. Lamical Perine had a 24-yard run to draw the Gators within three, 31-28, then Franks capped another long scoring drive with a 1-yard plunge on fourth down for a touchdown to give the Gators their first lead. The defense then came up with the big turnover late in the quarter that gave UF a chance to run out the clock.

What went wrong: Nothing.

Play of the quarter: Scarlett’s 25-yard run on third-and-seven that allowed the Gators to burn the rest of the clock after Henderson’s pick.

— Robbie Andreu

South Carolina        14    7    10     0 — 31

Florida                       7    7      7   14 — 35

No. 19 Florida 35, South Carolina 31

First Quarter

SC_August 2 pass from Bentley (White kick), 9:17

SC_Markway 19 pass from Bentley (White kick), 4:51

Second Quarter

FLA_Perine 2 run (McPherson kick), 13:46

FLA_Franks 10 run (McPherson kick), 8:58

SC_Bentley 1 run (White kick), 4:21

Third Quarter

SC_FG White 34, 9:19

SC_Dowdle 4 run (White kick), 4:43

FLA_Toney 18 pass from Franks (McPherson kick), :56

Fourth Quarter

FLA_Perine 23 run (McPherson kick), 11:03

FLA_Franks 1 run (McPherson kick), 4:09

                 SC  FLA

First downs; 19; 35

Rushes-yards; 36-147; 62-367

Passing; 239; 161

Comp-Att-Int; 18-28-1; 15-21-0

Return Yards; 78 -4

Punts-Avg.; 4-44.5; 3-46.0

Fumbles-Lost; 0-0; 3-1

Penalties-Yards; 7-41; 7-55

Time of Possession; 24:20; 35:40


RUSHING_South Carolina, Turner 12-81, Denson 14-49, Dowdle 2-8, Bentley 6-8, Samuel 1-3, (Team) 1-(minus 2). Florida, Scarlett 18-159, Perine 16-107, Toney 4-51, Franks 16-36, Pierce 5-19, (Team) 3-(minus 5).

PASSING_South Carolina, Bentley 18-28-1-239. Florida, Franks 15-21-0-161.

RECEIVING_South Carolina, Samuel 4-120, Bry.Edwards 3-34, S.Smith 2-24, August 2-14, Crosby 2-11, Vann 2-10, Markway 1-19, Turner 1-4, Dawkins 1-3. Florida, Hammond 5-35, Toney 2-33, Grimes 2-24, Cleveland 1-19, Lewis 1-14, V.Jefferson 1-14, Gamble 1-11, Krull 1-10, Scarlett 1-1.

MISSED FIELD GOALS_Florida, McPherson 41.


        • Gator-6, I did what I said I was going to do. I recorded the game, but did not watch it yet. I was working on getting my heater working and I came in to check the game and I saw Carolina go from their 3 1/2 yard line to the Gators 7 yard line. We were losing, so I turned it off again, but kept recording. When I came back after the game was over – I almost had another heart attack because the GATORS came back and won. I take losartan by the way…LOL. If I had watched that game while it was going on I would have probably died…LOL. This was a belated B-day present so thanks GATORS!!! I am going to make some hot chicken and watch the game. I think this works great for me. Great win regardless how it looks. I will wait to share anything else until after I have viewed the game. GO GATORS!!!

          • Hey, you’re onto something there, Ed. Probably no harm in giving you my digest of it since you’ll have watched it by the time you read this — but what I saw was off and on gumption, then when they really had to, they came alive and played like they should have all along. Hope they put 60 minutes of it together against FSU! It’ll be interesting to get your take when you’re done watching it……

  1. All the bullshit I hear about Toney, and he has now fumbled 2x during the game!!!!!! Frank’s has been fair today but I see why he dont have time, not enough bodies blocking, hard to block 6 when your dbl teaming one and one coming free!! Need to double the TEs and provide a struggling QB time imo

  2. Dan Mullen kool aid now spit out by all the Gator fans. Is next year’s quarterback even on this roster? Team morale looks at an all time low. That’s a flat sideline. Rightfully so. These kids know this game is over.

  3. Grantham and the D no help. Pathetic in fact. Embarrassing performance. Mullen has no faith in his passing game and still refuses to give Jones a shot. He could have played in two games, this one and FSU for instance. The tale of a team with two personalities. This is the ugly one.

  4. Omg 2 missed tackles AGAIN!!! Grantham needs to go back to fundamentals!! The defense has had issues all day with tackling! The only answer I can think of is to write off this season and look forward to a dual threat QB and a better Offense next season. The Oline can stop killing the Offense with penalties ,making it even harder for Frank’s. CDM cant keep calling the same plays , they have figured out the only plays he is calling. Not that he has much to work with considering. It’s sad because I had hoped they would come out on fire but they peaked already and the season is pretty much done as far as the awesome play we saw earlier in the season from both sides of the ball. Ball security on offense, out of position on defense, missed tackles on ST and Defense. I just dont see this getting better this year. Even if they win, it does NOT make these mistakes good. Just saying

  5. I get why he don’t want to play Jones. Save him for the final 2 games and then the bowl. I couldnt agree more!! Unfortunately that will not help us this game. Trask getting hurt slammed CDMs plans for this game and he had to whip up another game plan for Frank’s, who I think CDM has lost confidence in. We’ll just have to suck it up and hope for the best I guess

    • Franks has absolutely nothing to do with being down right now. In fact there’s nothing wrong with the offense. This is all on the D. Time to give Franks a break and lay off, he’s playing good enough to win and 28pts against South Carolina should’ve been more than enough.

  6. Um Grumpy, I dont like to disagree with you but Frank’s HAS scored running the ball TWICE. That isnt actually taking it out of his hands. He is securing the ball well and he recovered a Toney fumble. Not trying to offend , just giving the kid credit!!

  7. Why are so many of you begging for jones; he hasn’t proved capable all year of being the qb or he would have been put there already. Let this year play out and if he’s better next year start him; if not get another qb.

  8. To be clear…taking the ball out of Franks’ passing hands. If Florida throws any pass other than a screen pass, it’s a criminal offense. Franks has become the runner Dan Mullen needs, and is no longer the passer we don’t need. Credit where credit is due.

  9. Go back and read the comments from the start to the finish of the game, and its easy to say that our fans have just as much quit in them as any player. Don’t talk trash about how “its over” and “we might not beat Idaho” and then claim the players quit. The players and coaches never quit! How many fans can say they never gave up?

    • It was a great win, Sparky — but why the on again-off again “relentless effort”? Scarlet and Perine had it and carried them through until it became contagious and suddenly both sides of the ball found it again too. God, I hope to hell they can put up a full 60 minutes of relentless effort football against FSU! What a way to end the season, do the same in a good bowl win, pick up some blue chip recruits, and kick some major butt next year.

      I didn’t give up, but I sure as hell wondered where their heads were some of the time.

      • 6….. so hard to explain these things. But back in the UGA game, Fromm’s passing success and Franks’ turnovers put the Gators into a funk that last about 8 quarters. But finally….the Gators found lightning in a bottle. Toney got the spark going and Scarlett, Perrine, and yes even Franks, finally found some energy and made it happen.

        Good job from the crowd as well!!

        I wondered before the game if these guys had the character it needed….I’d say they should great character and guts today. Great job Gators!!!

  10. Good win, especially since it was the offense that won. The one part of the team that has truly stunk the last 10 years.

    Couple observations.
    Trask should transfer after the season as Mullen doesn’t know what to do with a drop back passer. More on that next.

    Franks should consider transferring too unless he’s committed to running 15-20 times per game like Tebow and other Mullen qbs. Doesn’t mean he will be the starter next season even if he’s okay with running possibly as much as he passes the ball. Again, Mullen doesn’t know what to do with a drop back passer. Felipe’s best game in a while, his stats; 161 yards on 15-21, 16 rushes for 36 yards 1 td passing, 2 td rushing and no turnovers. That’s not a drop back passers stats.

    The running backs and running game did well today. While this is against a Muschump defense, that’s good, but there is a reason Muschump isn’t coaching at UF. Because he isn’t a great coach or even a really good coach. Best 4th quarter performance all season. Best quarter performance all season.

    Don’t take this as a negative for Mullen as Meyer doesn’t know what to do with a drop back passer either. Offense is essentially the same no matter who the qb is. It’s about executing the offense not about executing.

    The best thing(s) about this win and game is we did it against Chump, we did it with good offensive play and we did it at home.

    I hope Jones gets a lot of plays in the next few games as he’s the only qb on the roster that is inMullen mold.

    Wish we would have gone for the last td.

  11. If this team played with the 4th quarter heart they showed today, but for at least 50 minutes of the 60 regulation minutes per game, there’s no telling how far they’d go. If they played that way for a full 60 minutes per game, don’t tell me we wouldn’t be playing for an SEC championship this year. What’s that you say? We don’t have the talent to go that far? Maybe not, but that wouldn’t matter a bit. If we just play like character, drive, and heart isn’t an on and off thing.

    Well, Go Gators anyway! Beat FSU.

  12. No doubt the South Carolina fans are ready to hoist Muschchamp on their shoulders and praise him for his greatness! I am sure they will be holding parades and throwing rallies to thank him for yet another masterful job. Because, of course, they love losing! His defense was sooooo good. He really is a mastermind! How could all we spoiled Gator fans have doubted this wizard of the gridiron? Wow! I am so humbled now that I ever doubted him! Hands down, SEC Coach of The Year! Only spoiled Gator fans would say anything else about him after that great, great job! Scratch that. Coach of the Century!!!!!!

    This team kept fighting and found a way to win! I was proud of them fighting back from 14-0, and I loved how hard all the guys on offense were running. Okay. Great, great, great! So happy for these players and our coaches!!!! You are Legend!

  13. Gators won and that’s all I care about. Franks played a decent game today and made some pretty good throws. Running game was also good. Other than the fumbles the offense played pretty good. I don’t know what has happen to our defense but we keep giving up big play, glad they woke up in the 4th quarter. In the end it was a close and exciting game. GO GATORS!!!!!!!!!!!! Good Day……………

  14. Our Oline wore down their smaller Dline, as the tv announcers observed. Running against a smaller Dline made the running game look better, even helped Franks look better. Can’t overlook that. We need a qb with better (control and consistency) passing skills to compete for championships, but Franks deserves credit for not giving in to the boo birds and trying his best to follow the game plan.

    • I really think Franks feeds off the negative energy! I am not saying people should boo him, but maybe he should put some boos on his phone before each game and listen to them because he gets fired up and plys harder!

  15. Boos is basically saying you suck, He needs that to get fired up, boo every game. This teams plays off the leader and that the QB. Once he tighten up the team as a whole played better. He played hard in the end.

  16. I know there’s still work to be done, but as a lifelong Gator fan I am damn proud of this team for NOT giving up, and fighting through all the adversity (like booing Franks and Mullen’s play call on 3rd and long, that’s weak, Gator fans who booed). As that was a tough Carolina team, but the Gators were tougher today. And it’s another ‘W’ in the record books. But most impressive for me was that it was a ”17 point deficit” comeback win. That just doesn’t happen very often in FBS (Div. I) football anymore. The Gator running game was exceptional with 300+ yds of rushing today; Scarlett and Perine both getting over a 100 yds rushing on a Muschamp ‘D’, too.
    CHOMP-CHOMP! Go Gators!

    • I was fine with the quick kick. My guess was that they looked at the Gamers defense and had that kick as option based on the alignment, but in any case 4th and 11 was not a favorable down. It all worked out! Great post, too, and good stats. Run run run!

  17. Frank’s played well. I liked the quick kick.

    I don’t like south Carolina or Georgia. I don’t consider south Carolina to a good team so to me this was lower than Missouri as we need to get a lot better on defense. But we won. I’m sorry I couldn’t watch the end but I kept checking in. No point in bashing the fans, south Carolina is not appealing in any way to invest the time of watching a game in unless it was to clinch the sec east which should have been us thus year imo.

    • C’mon MV, you’re telling us you believe our players, (who we all know were not as highly recruited, trained, or coached for the last 3 years as the GA players), should be better and win more now? I don’t think we fans tend to give enough credit to the other teams sometimes.

        • Daz….I’d disagree. Yes, the team that beat LSU wouldn’t have gone down by 17. But keep in mind that this is a team that is growing in the maturity and character department. And those traits don’t turn around and develop over a short time….it takes a long time. So consider this team a young team which will have ups and downs. And since UGA, this has been a down time. But, they didn’t quit (like they did against Mizzou) and they found a way to win a tough game that had them beat after 3 quarters. SC isn’t great but they are not a pushover either. Give the Gators credit for a WIN…..

  18. Wh-what? I dropped in on the Gamecocks’ message board and they are NOT expressing their love and support for Mushchamp and his mad coaching skills? I am so confused. It must be spoiled Gator fans pretending to be USC fans, I suppose. I have it on expert authority that USC fans are “different” and do not expect to win games when they have 17 point leads going into the 4th quarter and a defensive mastermind as head coach plus an unstoppable “high octane” offense.

  19. Very pleased and proud of how the Gators came back and pulled out a victory from the jaws of what seemed to be certain defeat. I say “seemed” because the Gators were not defeated at any point during this game,even when they were down 31-14. I drove up from Cocoa to see this game with my good friend Richard Newman (known to his friends as “Nemo”), who teaches computer science at UF. We have been friends since high school (we both graduated from P K Yonge). You can say what you want about Franks – he is all heart, and he was fired up, and the Florida Gators got fired up, and the Florida fans got fired up – KEEP UP YOUR HARD WORK AND YOUR INSPIRED LEADERSHIP!!! As for the Gator football team, they did not allow adversity to undermine their confidence and/or level of play. GO GATORS!!! (TY Coach Mullen and the entire football staff – you guys are the greatest!!!).