The Florida Gators (4-5, 2-5) entered today's game against the South Carolina Gamecocks (5-4, 2-4) with plenty to play for, but would come out of the contest disappointing, ultimately falling to its SEC foe 40-17.
It would be the 42nd meeting between Florida and South Carolina, and with 40 points, it was the most points the Gamecocks have ever scored in the series.
The Florida football season has spiraled downhill this year, and that would continue in its game against South Carolina. At halftime, Florida would trail South Carolina 30-10. During his halftime interview with Alyssa Lang, Mullen was asked whether or not the team would be making any adjustments.
He responded with a non-serious answer of "nope." Well, that appears to have been the case as the Gators continued to look hopeless into the second half. Florida would surrender 13 more points heading into the fourth quarter, going down 40-10 with not a chance in sight.
Florida's first second-half score wouldn't come until the end of the third quarter, cutting the South Carolina lead to 23, trailing 40-17 with around 11 minutes remaining in the fourth quarter.
During the first half, Florida was unable to stop the South Carolina offense on both the ground and through the air. The defense would be a bit better, but not by much during the early portions of the second half.
South Carolina had "only" 84 yards in the third quarter, markedly better than the team's first quarter of 140 yards allowed and its second quarter of 176 yards allowed. Mullen has used moral victories in the face of bleakness before and this was one of them for Florida, absolutely.
There didn't appear to be many adjustments for Florida on either side of the football. The team still was unable to run the ball, accounting for just 18 yards in the third quarter. Florida still had plenty in the way of penalty yardage in the third, accounting for three penalties for 34 yards.
The Gators defense surrendered plenty of yardage on the ground, too, allowing both Gamecocks running backs, Zaquandre White and Kevin Harris to rush over 100 yards on the day. Florida's defense just didn't ever seem to be able to maintain their gaps and looked to be out-schemed for another week.
Florida would ultimately surrender 459 total yards on the day, including 175 passing yards and 284 rushing yards.
Florida was forced to go back to redshirt junior quarterback Emory Jones for the contest as Anthony Richardson, the team's starting QB last week against Georgia, was held out after barely practicing this week due to a concussion the redshirt freshman suffered last week.
Jones would fare well early but did account for two turnovers including a fumble-six during the first half, and an interception in the second half. Overall, Jones would finish the game completing 17 out of 27 of his passes for 258 yards, two touchdowns and an interception.
The Gators fall to 4-5 on the year with two wins needed to get to a bowl game this year. They play Samford next week at home while going away to Missouri and finally at home again against Florida State. There will be plenty of questions for Mullen and his program, absolutely.
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