SEC Championship: Todd Grantham receives Gators fans' ire after Florida defense struggles

Dan Rorabaugh
Gator Sports

Florida Gators defensive coordinator Todd Grantham needed to draw up a plan to contain Mac Jones, Najee Harris and DeVonta Smith to have a chance at upsetting the No. 1 Alabama Crimson Tide in the SEC Championship Game.

That did not happen in the first half.

The Tide went into the break up 35-17, scoring on all five of their possessions (well, sort of: Trey Dean intercepted Jones on their second possession, but he fumbled on the return, giving the Tide a fresh drive that ended a play later with a touchdown). 

Alabama put up 366 yards in the first half. Jones was 20 of 28 passing with 267 yards and four touchdowns. The Tide were 7 of 9 on third down, and they were gifted multiple first downs by penalties after the Gators seemed to finally stop them.

Gators fans on Twitter have expressed their anger toward Grantham's defense all season. This game was no different, as calls to fire Grantham rained from across the internet.

Heated vs. Kentucky:Head coach Dan Mullen, defensive coordinator caught in fiery exchange

Five takeaways:Florida can't stop Alabama

Speed boost:Kadarius Toney answers for Gators vs. Crimson Tide

One play in particular stood out early. DeVonta Smith was wide open on his touchdown after Dean's fumble. Notably so.

After Kyle Trask scored on a QB draw to pull the Gators within 28-17 late in the half, Alabama boss Nick Saban was seen on the sideline voicing his displeasure at his own defensive coordinator, Pete Golding. Gators fans wanted the same from Florida head coach Dan Mullen.

Some criticism came in the form of premonition.

The Gators will need a major turnaround to get back in the SEC Championship Game, and Grantham will need to make major adjustments to get the fanbase back on his side.

Highlight reel:See the best plays from the SEC Championship Game

Active/inactive:Kyle Pitts in, starting safety Shawn Davis out for SEC Championship Game

From LSU:Head Gator Dan Mullen takes unexpected view of the shoe toss