Kan Li / Scout

The Florida Gators continue to move up the rankings

Florida’s hot start is turning heads and earning votes.

The Gators moved up three spots to No. 8 in the Associated Press Poll and one spot to No. 11 in the Amway Coaches Poll. Both polls were released on Sunday afternoon.

Florida will travel to face LSU, who came in at No. 5 in the Coaches Poll and No. 6 in the AP Poll, on Saturday at 7 p.m. in Baton Rouge. Tigers running back Leonard Fournette went over 1,000 rushing yards on the season Saturday in their fifth game. The two programs are the top two SEC teams ranked in the AP Poll, as Texas A&M fell to No. 9 and Alabama fell to No. 10. 

Florida moved up after a dominating defensive performance that led to a 21-3 road win at Missouri. The Gators allowed 257 yards of offense while defensive backs Marcus Maye and Jalen Tabor both recorded interceptions. Tabor returned his 40 yards for a touchdown that served as the final score of the game. The Gators held true freshman quarterback Drew Lock to 16-39 through the air for 151 yards, no touchdowns and the two interceptions.

The Florida defense now ranks second in the Southeastern Conference with 14.3 points allowed and 99.2 rushing yards allowed. The Gators are fourth in total defense (296.3 yards allowed) while the pass efficiency defense ranks second (104.9). Florida leads the league with 21 sacks.

The Gators got off to a hot start offensively, scoring touchdowns on two of their first three drives. The group slowed down in the second half, and McElwain wasn’t happy with the offense. He expected more progress, and that started with quarterback Will Grier, who went 20-33 for 208 yards. The Gators have now gone 10 quarters without a turnover, and their +8 turnover margin leads the SEC and is tied for eighth in the country.

Junior running back Kelvin Taylor led the Florida offense on Saturday with 28 carries for 99 yards and two touchdowns, both coming in the first quarter.

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