Saturday September 4, 2010No. 4/3 Florida Opens Season With 34-12 Victory Over Miami University
The No. 4/3 Florida Gators opened the 2010 football season with a 34-12 victory over the Miami University RedHawks Saturday at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium. The Gators debuted seven new starters in front of a crowd of 90,178, the fourth-largest crowd for a season-opener in school history.
Redshirt junior quarterback John Brantley (Ocala, Fla.) notched his first career start for the Gators. Brantley went 17-25 for 113 yards and two touchdown passes. Brantley connected with five different receivers on the day.
The Gators defense came up big, picking off four passes on the game, returning one for a touchdown while scoring or setting up 21 of UF's 34 points on the game.
Sophomore linebacker Jon Bostic (Wellington, Fla.) collected his first career interception off a pass from Miami University redshirt sophomore quarterback Zac Dysert, and the first of the game, redeeming a fumble by redshirt junior wide receiver Chris Rainey (Lakeland, Fla.).
In the second quarter, junior cornerback Janoris Jenkins (Pahokee, Fla.) kicked things into high gear after snagging the Gators' second interception and score of the game. Jenkins took it home for Florida with a 67-yard touchdown return to give the Gators a 7-3 lead.
Senior strong safety Ahmad Black (Lakeland, Fla.) captured the third interception of the first half and finished it with a 40-yard return to the MU 3-yard-line to keep the defense rolling for the Gators, but the UF offense was off to a slow start after a bad snap, which resulted in a Miami recovery. The RedHawks capitalized on the bad snap with a field goal by senior place kicker Trevor Cook with 7:01 remaining in the first quarter.
Brantley later connected with redshirt sophomore wide receiver Omarius Hines (Coriscana, Texas) on a 10-yard pass lengthening Florida's lead to 14-3, while Trey Burton (Venice, Fla.) put the Gators up 21-3 in the second quarter with a two-yard touchdown run becoming UF's first true freshman quarterback since Tim Tebow in 2006 to score a touchdown on opening day.
After a drive that consumed 7:42 by the RedHawks, a 31-yard field goal by Cook made the score 21-6. In the third quarter, the RedHawks added a pair of field goals by Cook to cut the Gator lead to 21-12 entering the final frame.
The Gator running backs saw plenty of action amassing 159 yards between them, while junior running back Jeff Demps (Winter Garden, Fla.) led the backs with eight carries for 98 yards yards. A 72-yard run by Demps, the longest of his career, capped a 75-yard, 53 second drive in the fourth quarter, but a missed extra point kept the score at 27-12.
The Gators wrapped up their 21st straight season-opener win with the fourth and final interception on the game came when Jeremy Brown (Orlando, Fla.) made his first career interception and paved the way for a 25-yard touchdown pass from Brantley to Rainey, Rainey's 10th career touchdown.
The Gators will take on in-state opponent USF at home on Sept. 11. The game will begin at 12:21 and will be televised on the SEC Network.