Driskel building on his reputation

Florida's faith in Jeff Driskel balloons with each win. The staff's confidence in the sophomore first fired in the season opener against Bowling Green, when the Oviedo native racked up more snaps at quarterback than Jacoby Brissett. It continued in College Station, Texas, when he was named UF's starting quarterback. This week, he joined Sam Robey and Sharrif Floyd in the coveted role as captain.

Jeff Driskel profile

Saturday's 38-0 shutout over Kentucky chugged Florida to its first conference shutout in 11 years, but the victory was one of firsts for Driskel, too.

With the clock flickering at 7:13 in the first quarter, Driskel took off. The quarterback smoked the right end of the field for 38 yards, marking a career-long rush for the sophomore.

Florida head coach Will Muschamp pinned Driskel's performance on the play as one that just shows the different dimension his physical ability brings to the squad.

"There are so many things he brings to the table for us offensively because of his athletic ability," Muschamp said.

Muschamp added the team this season is unselfish and doesn't care about who gets the credit for what unravels on the field. Driskel is at the forefront of that unselfishness.

When addressing his impressive run postgame, Driskel passed the credit to running back Hunter Joyer and his ability to pin Kentucky's linebacker inside.

"I just hit the sideline," Driskel said. "If I had a bit more speed, I probably could have scored."

However, while Driskel chalked up the longest rush of his career, he also posted another, less-desirable, first.

In the second quarter, Driskel threw his first interception of the year, falling in the hands of Kentucky cornerback Martavius Neloms. The pass was intended for UF wide receiver Latroy Pittman in the endzone.

But Florida's faith in Driskel remains.

"The throwing game is going to continue to come," Muschamp said. "We're going to have our speed bumps — that's part of the growing process when you're at quarterback."

Driskel, who entered UF ranked as the nation's No. 1 quarterback, finished the Kentucky shutout going 18-for-27 in passing for 203 yards. He also tacked on a touchdown in the third quarter from a 1-yard run. Brissett took over at quarterback in the fourth quarter.

Driskel said he thought he had some nice plays in Saturday's contest, but he still has some areas to tidy. He specifically pointed to getting the ball of his hands more quickly.

"Every game is really a building block of development," Driskel said. "The more experience, the more reps you get, the more you're going to learn."


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