Look: Florida Gators Debut Honorary 9/11 Helmets

The Florida Gators will honor 9/11 victims and first responders this weekend against USF.
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Photo credit: Florida Gators creative media

To honor victims and first responders on the day of the 20th anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, the Florida Gators have unveiled a new helmet that they will wear against the USF Bulls on Saturday.

For the second week in a row, Florida will wear white tops and bottoms but instead of the traditional orange helmet worn against FAU, the Gators will don a white cap with red, white and blue font spelling out the team name.

Head coach Dan Mullen spoke about the attacks this past Monday and the message that he has relayed to the Gators about the importance of the day in American history. A solid percentage of Florida's current roster was born following the attacks 20 years ago.

"I remember a lot about that day, you know that whole situation," Mullen said. 

"I was coaching at Bowling Green and, you know, we're sitting in there and like someone said 'Hey you know a plane crashed in the World Trade Center.’ We’re game planning, supposed to play South Carolina that week. And you know, living in New York for four years, you're like, 'Something must have gone horribly wrong right there at LaGuardia airport or something for that to happen.' And, you know, then you realize what was really going on and it's kind of a very, very scary day and, you know, kind of canceled football for that week, had a huge impact on that season for us, in [the] football aspect of things, but obviously, you know, bigger impact on life. 

"You know, I think as everybody remembers it's changed a lot about the world, you know, in those 20 years, it's changed an awful lot about the world and how we carry ourselves on a daily basis.”

2,996 lives were lost, including 2,977 victims and 19 terrorists, on September 11, 2001, after four planes were hijacked by the Al-Qaeda terrorist group. Two crashed into the Twin Towers of New York's World Trade Center, another flew into The Pentagon in Washington D.C., and one crashed into a field in Shanskville, Pennsylvania after passengers attempted to regain control of the flight.

Florida will face USF at Raymond James Stadium at 1 P.M. ET on Saturday.

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