Dooley Grades The Gators: Better in key areas, now on to Kentucky

Florida running back Malik Davis runs Saturday against UT-Martin at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium. [Brad McClenny/The Gainesville Sun]


First half: The passing game certainly was strong with the two bombs by Feleipe Franks and a lot of short completions. But the running game was pretty average with 83 yards and getting stuffed on fourth-and-2 was not good.

Second half: Franks kept it going and Florida was able to get some valuable playing time for the back-up quarterbacks. The Gators were able to score on their first three possessions to put the game away.

For the game: Florida finished with 541 yards in the game, but it’s hard to give the team an A grade because of the opposition. UF was able to get the run game going better in the second half with 148 yards.


First half: Anytime you pitch a shutout it’s excellent and, other than a couple of wheel routes that Tennessee-Martin hit for big plays, the defense had a really sharp half. The Gators held the Skyhawks to 83 yards and sacked quarterback John Bachus three times, all of them coming on important downs.

Second half: Florida’s defense allowed only two first downs in the second half and Kaiir Elam got the only turnover of the game with an interception in the end zone.

For the game: Yes, a team can get an A grade no matter the opposition when it shuts out the opponent. Any opponent. Florida allowed only 54 rushing yards (five sacks helped) and avoided the dumb penalties that were a problem two weeks ago.


First half: Evan McPherson made his only field goal attempt and Florida never punted so there wasn’t a lot to grade. Florida had three punt returns for only three yards, but the key was keeping those punts from getting deeper into Florida territory.

Second half: Tyrie Cleveland’s 34-yard kickoff return to the UF 49 set the tone for the second half. Tommy Townsend’s lone punt pinned the Shyawks back at the 3-yard line, but he was helped by a bad decision to field it by Terry Williams.

For the game: Special teams usually are not a big factor in a game like this, but it’s still important to do your job. The Gators did and even though the punt return yardage wasn’t great, Freddie Swain’s sure hands were.


The two big injuries put a damper on a hot evening, but Florida did do things better in key areas than the Gators did against Miami. Of course, it was a different kind of opponent in a different kind of environment. It will be interesting to see how these freshmen hold up in their first true road game.