Florida vs. Kentucky final score: Gators chew up Wildcats on the ground, win 24-7

Andy Lyons

It wasn't a particularly pretty game by Florida, but an effective offense and a suffocating defense led the Gators to another win.

So far, so good for Tyler Murphy -- in his first start replacing the injured Jeff Driskel, the 6'2, 210 pound junior was nearly flawless, completing 11 of 11 passes in the first half to push the Gators to a 21-7 lead. They would tack on another field goal late, but the lead was built behind Murphy's efficient first half passing and rushing touchdown.

He would end the day 15 of 18 passing for 156 yards through the air. Those numbers were not completely indicative of his play, however, as Murphy led the Gators to 22 first downs. An interception in the third quarter was his only real mistake.

Driskel wasn't the only missing Gator, though. After losing defensive tackle Dominique Easley for the season, the Gators did not miss a beat, allowing just 173 total yards to Kentucky. They also recorded six sacks in his absence, two each by Dante Fowler and Jonathan Bullard.

Kentucky's only score came on a fake field goal with 1:46 left in the first quarter when kicker Joe Mansour took a pitch from his holder scampered 25 yards to the end zone. It was a play not unlike the one Les Miles ran with Colt David several years ago.

Florida improves to 3-1 on the year with the win.

Box Score Hero: Matt Jones' workmanlike efforts take it this week -- his final line consisted of 28 carries for 176 yards and a touchdown, making Murphy's life infinitely easier.

Rankings Ramifications: Florida could gain a spot or two in the AP poll after this win, although that will likely have more to do with No. 11 Oklahoma State's loss rather than anything they accomplished against the Wildcats.

But Did They Cover? The Gators were favored by anywhere between 10.5 and 12 points.

For More On This Game: For more on the Wildcats, hit up A Sea of Blue. Florida's SBNation affiliate is Alligator Army.

Next Week's Schedule: Florida will play Arkansas next weekend. Kentucky will travel to South Carolina.

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