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Florida defense can't stop the Tide from rolling

Alabama crushes the Gators, 31-6, with an effective ground game.

October 02, 2010|Orlando Sentinel

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. -- Defense was supposed to keep the Florida Gators in this, not let them down.

No. 7 Florida entered the game against top-ranked Alabama leading the country in interceptions. The defensive front had stopped some of the SEC's better rushers. While the offense floundered, the defense had excelled.

But, the Gators (4-1, 1-1 SEC) couldn't stop Alabama. The Crimson Tide proved that soundly on Saturday night, beating Florida, 31-6, at Bryant-Denny Stadium in front of 101,821.

No one thing was too much for the Gators, but the balance of the Alabama's offense proved to be too overwhelming for Florida.

The Tide (5-0, 2-0) rushed for 170 yards, with 47 coming from Heisman winner and 63 from sophomore stud Trent Richardson.

Quarterback Greg McElroy passed for 103 yards, thanks mostly to a lack of a pass rush by the Gators.

And Florida's best defensive plays came on punts as Chas Henry had one for 75 yards and averaged 63.3 yards on punts.

"We kind of got away from our game plan and kind of made a few mental errors and kind of messed us up," said linebacker Jelani Jenkins. "We wanted to stay right with our gaps and we wanted to make sure we had every gap covered, and a lot of times we missed our contain player."

Alabama manufactured long scoring drives on the Florida defense in the first half to give the Tide a 24-3 lead at halftime. Ingram rushed for two second-quarter touchdowns and wide receiver Marquis Maze also threw a touchdown that quarter, completing a 19-yard pass to Michael Williams.

Florida got an early field goal from Chas Henry in the third, but the Gators could muster little else.

It was on the defense to keep the Gators in this one, and Saturday it could not.

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