Final: Florida Gators lose Cotton Bowl vs. Oklahoma Sooners 55-20

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The Florida Gators (8-4) ended their season on a three-game losing streak after being routed by Oklahoma 55-20 in the Cotton Bowl on Wednesday.

Florida (8-4) played without its top four receivers and had only about 60 scholarship players available.

The Sooners (9-2) won their eighth consecutive game.

5 takeaways:Gators' season ends with blowout loss to Oklahoma Sooners

Spoke too soon:Linebacker James Houston hears trash talk of Sooners bite back

No. 6 Oklahoma 55, No.  7 Florida 20

Florida           3       10       0      7  —  20

Oklahoma    17       14     10     14  — 55  

First Quarter

OKL_Mims 27 pass from Rattler (Brkic kick), 12:59.

OKL_Norwood 45 interception return (Brkic kick), 12:22.

OKL_FG Brkic 43, 8:08.

FLA_FG McPherson 21, :31.

Second Quarter

FLA_E.Jones 1 run (McPherson kick), 8:08.

FLA_FG McPherson 35, 6:05.

OKL_Wease 36 pass from Rattler (Brkic kick), 4:08.

OKL_Rattler 1 run (Brkic kick), :16.

Third Quarter

OKL_FG Brkic 20, 7:51.

OKL_Stevenson 15 run (Brkic kick), 3:58.

Fourth Quarter

OKL_Rambo 20 pass from Rattler (Brkic kick), 10:30.

OKL_Major 46 run (S.Johnson kick), 6:11.

FLA_J.Pouncey 27 pass from A.Richardson (C.Howard kick), 3:18.

                                           FLA          OKL

First downs                            29           25

Rushes-yards                        39-250    40-435

Passing                                      271       249

Comp-Att-Int                           25-45-3     15-25-0

Return Yards                                  74         81

Punts-Avg.                                      4-49.2     2-42.0

Fumbles-Lost                                0-0          3-2

Penalties-Yards                              8-61      4-40

Time of Possession                       33:20     26:40


RUSHING_Florida, E.Jones 10-60, Pierce 11-60, Wright 4-44, A.Richardson 3-42, M.Davis 7-31, Lingard 1-13, Trask 3-0. Oklahoma, Stevenson 18-186, Major 9-110, McGowan 1-73, Rattler 7-40, M.Henderson 1-18, Hudson 2-12, (Team) 2-(minus 4).

PASSING_Florida, Trask 16-28-3-158, E.Jones 8-16-0-86, A.Richardson 1-1-0-27. Oklahoma, Rattler 14-23-0-247, C.Morris 1-2-0-2.

RECEIVING_Florida, Wells 6-43, Zipperer 4-38, Whittemore 2-47, Shorter 2-22, Pierce 2-20, M.Davis 2-19, Wright 2-13, J.Pouncey 1-27, Weston 1-13, Gamble 1-13, X.Henderson 1-12, Fraziars 1-4. Oklahoma, McGowan 3-70, Rambo 2-45, Stoops 2-21, Bridges 2-19, Wease 1-36, Mims 1-27, Stogner 1-12, Hall 1-12, T.Howard 1-5, M.Henderson 1-2.

MISSED FIELD GOALS_Florida, McPherson 58.

Leaving it all on the field:Emory Jones leads Gators to points but loses his lunch

Rough start:Kyle Trask throws 3 first-quarter picks as Gators fall far behind early


What went right: Anthony Richardson’s 27-yard touchdown pass to Jordan Pouncey was another reminder this game was about the future for the Gators rather than the contest itself. 

What went wrong: Once again, Florida’s defense was an embarrassment. The Gators allowed 212 yards of offense and two touchdowns to fall 55-20 to the Sooners. The fourth quarter began with UF inside Oklahoma’s 11-yard line, but Florida turned it over on downs and the Sooners proceeded to go 97 yards in eight plays to extend the lead. 

Play of the Quarter: Richardson’s touchdown pass will be all Florida fans want to remember from this fourth quarter. Not the showing a top-10 team wants to end the year on.

— Graham Hall

11:28 p.m. | Richardson throws TD

Third-team quarterback Anthony Richardson throws a 27-yard touchdown pass to Jordan Pouncey at the thye 3:18 mark to cap a six-play, 89-yard drive. Chris Howard kicked the PAT.

11:20 p.m. | OU making it ugly

Marcus Major runs for 46 yards for a TD to put the Sooners up 55-13 at the 6:11 mark.

11:07 p.m. | OU pouring it on

Rattler passes to Charleston Rambo for a 20-yard TD to put OU up 48-13 at the 10:13 mark.

Rattler runs for 25 to the UF 13.

Rattler passes to Seth McGowan for 47 yards to the UF 43.

10:57 p.m. | OU denies Florida

Gators denied deep in the red zone, come up empty.


What went right: Emory Jones added to his building hype, but any hopes the Gators had of cutting into Oklahoma’s 18-point halftime lead were squandered in a scoreless third quarter by Florida. Give Florida some credit here as the run game accrued 74 yards, with Jones and running back Nay’Quan Wright doing most of the damage, but that was about it as the Sooners extended their double-digit advantage.

What went wrong: Defensively, the Gators were dismal in the third quarter as Oklahoma picked up 197 yards of offense and added 10 points to the scoreboard. Florida gave up a 73-yard run and struggled to stop the Sooners’ rushing attack led by Rhamondre Stevenson. Florida punted on their first two drives, making the comeback even more unlikely. 

Play of the Quarter: For UF, it’s Emory Jones’ 22-yard run as the quarter neared a close that got the Gators in scoring range. 

Trending:The Gators, down 28, are knocking on the door with Emory Jones under center – although this one’s all but over, barring a miracle akin to the Choke at Doak.

— Graham Hall

10:41 p.m. | Sooners going off

Rhamondre Stevenson runs for 15-yard TD for a 41-13 advantage for the Sooners at 3:58 mark. UF has given up 297 yards on the ground.

OU's Rhamondre Stevenson runs for 50 to the Florida 37.

Malik Davis runs for 18 yards to the Florida 43. But UF has to punt.

Florida           3       10       0

Oklahoma    17       14     10    

10:27 p.m. | Sooners pad lead

Brkic hits a 20-yard field goal to put the Sooners up 34-13 at the 7:51 mark and cap an 86-yard drive in six plays.

Holding call denies an OU score, move back to UF 15.

Seth McGowan runs for 73 yards and then horse-collar tackle puts back at UF five.

Cotton Bowl attendance is 17,323.

Not much offensive movement by either team.

Oklahoma wide receiver Theo Wease sprints to the end zone after a reception Wednesday and scores a touchdown ahead of Florida linebacker James Houston IV (41) during the second quarter of the Cotton Bowl in Arlington, Texas.

9:49 p.m. | OU pulling away at half


What went right: Florida’s first possession of the quarter, which featured backup quarterback Emory Jones. After Trask moved the chains twice, Jones took over and led the Gators on their first touchdown drive. He converted a pair of third downs and then scored from a yard out to make it a one-score game. Mohamoud Diabate forced Florida’s second fumble on the ensuing series, leading to McPherson’s second field goal to bring UF within four points. 

What went wrong: After the Gators forced a pair of turnovers and a punt to cut the deficit to 17-13, they found themselves trailing by double digits less than two minutes later. Oklahoma receiver Theo Wease got open on a pick play and Rattler found him for a 36-yard touchdown pass on third-and-14. Following McPherson’s miss from 58 yards, Rattler led the offense on a two-minute drive before the half and capped it off with his one-yard touchdown run. 

Play of the quarter: Rattler’s second TD pass to Wease, a much-needed score for the Sooners after Florida had gained some momentum. 

Trending: Rattler, who outperformed Florida’s Heisman Trophy finalist at quarterback with 147 yards passing, three total touchdowns and, unlike Trask, no interceptions.

— Zach Abolverdi

Florida           3       10

Oklahoma    17       14     

9:40 p.m. | Sooners pulling away

Rattler scores from a yard out to put the Sooners up 31-13 with 16 seconds left before the half. Score capped a nine-play, 60-yard score.

McPherson comes up short on 58-yard field goal attempt at the 2:50 mark.

9:28 p.m. | OU stretches lead

Rattler completes 36-yard scoring pass play with Theo Wease at the 4:08 mark. Score capped a four-play, 60-yard drive and puts OU up 24-13

9:19 p.m. | McPherson kicks another

McPherson kicks a 35-yard field goal to bring the Gators within 17-13 at the 6:05 mark.

Florida recovers a fumble by the Sooners' Rhamondre Stevenson, with Kaiir Elam covering the turnover at the Oklahoma 24.

9:11 p.m. | Gators cut deficit to 17-10

Jones scores from a yard out to cap a 16-play, 88-yard drive to cut the deficit to 17-10 at the 8:08 mark.

Jones passes to Rick Wells for 13 yards to the OU 1.

Jones passes to Xzavier Henderson for 12 yards to the Oklahoma 14.

Trask and Jones alternating at quarterback for Gators on the drive following Sooners punt.

8:59 p.m. | Gators D up


What went right: Florida’s defense following Trask’s second and third picks. The former set the Sooners up at their own 45, but UF forced a 43-yard field goal to avoid a three-touchdown deficit. Three plays after Trask’s end-zone interception, defensive end Khris Bogle brought quarterback Spencer Rattler with a sack fumble to give the Gators the ball back at the Oklahoma 36. That led to Evan McPherson’s 21-yarder. 

What went wrong: The first three possessions. The Sooners marched 79 yards in five plays to open the game, picking on UF safety Donovan Stiner for a 27-yard touchdown catch by Marvin Mims. Florida’s first offensive drive was even worse, with Kyle Trask throwing a pick-six on his second pass attempt. Trask led the Gators into OU territory on his second series, but was off target to Kemore Gamble and intercepted again. 

Play of the quarter: Oklahoma’s first interception, a 45-yard pick-six by defensive back Tre Norwood. That was the beginning of Trask’s nightmare start. 

Trending: Oklahoma’s secondary, which picked off Trask three times in the first quarter after he had thrown five interceptions all season.

— Zach Abolverdi

8:51 p.m. | UF scores

Evan McPherson hits a 21-yard field goal with 31 seconds left to put the Gators on the scoreboard following the OU turnover.

OU QB Spencer Rattler fumbles, forced by Khris Bogle, recovered by UF's Trey Dean III at Sooners' 36.

Oklahoma    17              

Florida           3

8:41 p.m. | Trask throws 3rd pick

Trask looks like he has his arm hit while passing and throws a third interception into the Oklahoma end zone. Woodi Washington made the play for the Sooners at the 4:09 mark.

Trask returns and passes to Whittemore for 22 yards to the Oklahoma 25.

Jones to Trent Whittemore for 25 yards to the Florida 49.

Emory Jones comes in at quarterback for the Gators.

Florida defensive back Donovan Stiner (13) is unable to stop Oklahoma wide receiver Marvin Mims from reaching the end zone on a touchdown reception during the first half Wednesday of the Cotton Bowl in Arlington, Texas.

8:31 p.m. | Sooners up 17-0

Gabe Brkic nails a 43-yard field goal to put the Sooners up 17-0 with 8:08 still remaining in the quarter. That's 10 points off UF turnovers already.

Trask is intercepted again, this time by Brian Asamoah, who returns it 29 yards to the Oklahoma 45. 

Trask completes to Rick Wells for 10 yards to the UF 39, then 13 yards to Keon Zipperer  to the Oklahoma 48.

8:21 p.m. | Pick-6 for OU

Trask is intercepted for a TD by OU's Tre Norwood, who returned it for 45 yards down the sideline.

Trask has only thrown six interceptions this season, but four of them have been returned for touchdowns.

8:16 p.m. | Sooner score first

Oklahoma quarterback Spencer Rattler passes to Charleston Rambo for 26 yards to the Florida 33.

Rattler passes to Marvin Mims for 27 yards TD at the 12:59 mark to cap a five-play, 79-yard drive.

6:29 p.m. | UF defenders also out

Gator Nation already knew about starters Kyle Pitts, Trevon Grimes, Kadarius Toney Jacob Copeland, Marco Wilson and Shawn Davis being out, but Nick de la Torre (@delatorre) of Gator Territory reported from AT&T Stadium that defensive starters Kyree Campbell, Marlon Dunlap Jr. and Ventrell Miller will also not be available tonight vs. the Sooners.

Florida coach Dan Mullen said Tuesday his team would have about 60 scholarship players in uniform.

"Really hate it had to be like this not being able to ride with my boys 1 last time before this crazy year ends. #GoGators," Copeland wrote on his social media account before the game.

6 p.m. | Before the game

Tonight's game can be seen on ESPN, which is Channel 206 on DirecTV and Channel 140 on Dish Network.

More:How to watch Cotton Bowl between Florida Gators and Oklahoma Sooners on TV, live stream

Just before kickoff, the Gators were a nine-point underdog to the Sooners, according to BetMGM. Prior to Kyle Pitts and three other top receivers becoming unavailable for tonight's game, the Gators were favored by two points. After that, they were a 2½-point underdog, then closer to game time, that line went to seven points before tonight's line.

More:What's the latest line for the Cotton Bowl, Florida Gators vs. Oklahoma Sooners?

Florida coach Dan Mullen at the Cotton Bowl news conference in Arlington, Texas, on Tuesday. The Gators play the Oklahoma Sooners starting at 8 tonight on ESPN.

More pre-game coverage:

AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas, site of tonight's Cotton Bowl.
Florida quarterback Kyle Trask warms up before the Gators' game Wednesday night against Oklahoma in the Cotton Bowl in Arlington, Texas.