(Saturday, October 1st)
Final Score: (3) Alabama 38, (12) Florida 10
Gainesville, FL (Sports Network) - Trent Richardson ran for two scores as No. 3 Alabama routed 12th-ranked Florida, 38-10, in an SEC matchup at The Swamp.
Richardson had a career-high 181 yards on 29 carries while Eddie Lacy and A.J. McCarron added rushing touchdowns for the Crimson Tide (5-0, 2-0 SEC), who have won all of their games by double-digits. McCarron also went 12-for-25 with 140 yards passing.
"I think this was a great team win for us," said Alabama head coach Nick Saban. "Offensively we controlled the line of scrimmage. The offensive line did a fantastic job and Trent, obviously, did a very good job of running the ball. Defensively, once we settled down after the first couple of drives, I thought we played a lot better."
Florida (4-1, 2-1) quarterback John Brantley went 11-for-16 with 190 yards, one score and one interception, but left the game late in the second quarter with a right leg injury after getting sacked.
"We got beat by a better team tonight," said Florida head coach Will Muschamp. "We were inconsistent in stopping the run in the first half. They're a good football team, and you can't afford to make mistakes. We'll look at the film."
Florida was called for a false start when it lined up for its first play, but that didn't faze Brantley as he took the snap and lofted a deep pass down the left side for Andrew Debose, who caught it in-stride and took the ball in from 65 yards out for a 7-0 lead.
Alabama marched down the field and got into the red zone, but had to settle for a 32-yard field goal from Jeremy Shelley with 9:47 left in the first. Two plays prior, Kenny Bell was open near the end zone, but McCarron's pass was a bit off and Bell was unable to hold on to the ball as he fell backwards into the end zone.
The Gators didn't get a big play on their next drive, but did get three points off a 21-yard field goal from Caleb Sturgis with 5:19 to play in the first. Two plays before the field goal, Debose appeared to have a touchdown as he caught a pass in the right corner of the end zone and dragged his left foot, but a review determined that he didn't have possession of the ball before going out of bounds.
The Tide got a huge kickoff return from Marquis Maze as he took the ball 70 yards down to the Florida 29. A 3rd-and-14 saw Maze catch a short pass and take it 18 yards down to the one. Following a penalty and incompletion, Richardson took the ball into the end zone to tie the game with 52 seconds left in the first.
Florida took the ball to midfield on its next touch, but a costly turnover led to an Alabama score. On 3rd-and-4, Brantley was pressured up the middle and got rid of the ball. It went right into the hands of Courtney Upshaw and he took it into the end zone for a 17-10 lead just over two minutes into the second.
Following a Gators punt later in the second quarter, Alabama methodically marched the ball down the field and McCarron took it in himself on a quarterback sneak up the middle from a yard out for a 24-10 lead with 3:13 left.
Florida got down the field and was in the red zone, but a pair of sacks to Brantley, with the second one injuring the quarterback, pushed the ball back 22 yards and Sturgis missed a 52-yard field goal with just seconds left on the first half clock.
The third quarter saw both teams struggling for offense as the teams did nothing but punt in the frame, with each team booting the ball three times.
Alabama held the ball at the end of the third quarter, thanks to an 18-yard catch from Maze on third down, and got into the end zone 2 1/2 minutes into the fourth quarter on a 36-yard run by Richardson for a 31-10 lead.
A fumble on Florida's next touch was recovered by Alabama and a 20-yard touchdown run by Lacy up the middle sealed the game.
Alabama hosts Vanderbilt next Saturday...Florida plays at LSU next Saturday...Alabama has taken the past three games against Florida...Alabama had 226 rushing yards in the game, compared to just 15 for Florida...The Tide held the ball for 34:41.
10/02 01:25:31 ET