Florida 9, Vanderbilt 7, Instant Analysis: Gators fight off Vandy to clinch SEC East

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Florida didn’t play very well. At all. But they somehow escaped Vanderbilt’s upset bid on homecoming and secured their first SEC East Championship, and thus, their first trip to Atlanta for the SEC Championship since 2009.

Here’s how it all went down.

It was over when… Johnny McCrary’s desperation heave on fourth and 25 was caught well short of the first down marker.

Play of the game… Austin Hardin’s game winning 43 yard field goal with two minutes to go. I mean, it wasn’t like there were a whole lot of other big plays to choose from in a game that was mostly devoid of them.

Game ball goes to… Hardin, who shrugged off the fact that he was benched in favor of Neil MacInnes, came off the bench and nailed the game winner.

Stat of the game… 11. Florida has punched its ticket to its 11th appearance in the SEC Championship Game. Only Alabama, with nine, is even close to matching that.

What to be proud of… Florida’s defense could not possibly have played any better with the exception of Ralph Webb splitting the entire unit like Moses split the sea on a 74 yard touchdown run. Time and again they were thrown on the field with short rest, and time and again they came up with big plays to keep Florida in a game that closely resembled that of a Will Muschamp coached team. Major kudos to Geoff Collins and his squad. Without them, Florida loses this game. 100% sure of that.

What to work on… Treon Harris better remember the things he did at Booker T. Washington that got him to be so highly regarded to begin with, and start doing them, or else. There’s just no other way to say it. He was horrendous today, constantly misfiring on all cylinders and turning the ball over twice. He had to complete five of his last six passes just to finish with a 50% completion percentage. All of them were short comeback routes that Vanderbilt was giving him, but at least he hit them, which is more than you can say about him for the first three quarters of the game. It’s only because of the lack of depth behind him that he hasn’t been replaced yet. But since Florida’s stuck with him, all we can do is hope that McElwain can miraculously wring some production out of him.

Bottom line: Florida was downright horrible on offense today, due in large part to Treon Harris’s severe struggles. But the Gators are 2-1 with Harris as the starting QB and SEC East Champs for the first time since Tim Tebow’s days. Now we move ahead, and hope and pray that Harris improves at least to the point where we don’t cringe and turn away every time he does anything other than hand the ball off. But. SEC East Champs.

Scoring recap:

1st 2nd 3rd 4th Final
VANDERBILT 0 7 0 0 7
FLORIDA 6 0 0 3 9

Scoring plays:

Team Time Play VAN FLA
FLORIDA 1st 6:16 K. Taylor 3 yd run (PAT failed) 0 6
VANDERBILT 2nd :48 R. Webb 74 yd run (PAT good) 7 6
FLORIDA 4th 2:22 A. Hardin 43 yd FG GOOD 7 9

7 thoughts on “Florida 9, Vanderbilt 7, Instant Analysis: Gators fight off Vandy to clinch SEC East

    1. I saw it. They have work to do. But we knew that a long time ago. It’s a young, inexperienced unit that I’ve previously determined needed a full year of reps to improve to the point where they could be trusted. On the other hand, Harris has had a lot more time to get better, and the steps he’s taken are disproportionately small relative to the amount of time and reps he’s gotten.

  1. Yes, Harris was not good, but if are apportioning blame for the offensive trouble I would go like this:

    25% Harris
    35% Offensive line
    20% Turnovers
    20% Very good defense

    Actually, since one of the turnovers was Harris’ fault, maybe bump his up 5%.

    The point is that it is not all on Harris. Gotta get better over the next few weeks.

    1. True but Brady could’ve help us yesterday vandy defense and there cheerleaders was in the back field thang near every play I’m happy for the win but we better not that s*** to atl or we will get murderlize

  2. 4 turn overs and still a win…compared to what Georgia did with 5 turnovers.. a lopsided loss.

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