For most of the first three quarters, Florida struggled to deliver on Meyer's demand. A Chas Henry punt late in the first half was kicked with nineteen seconds remaining on the play clock, and the mistake of not running off the time was compounded by Gator gunners not being able to catch the perfectly placed ball at the one. (With 2:32 on the clock, the Sooners drove down the field before Major Wright's interception snuffed the threat with three seconds remaining in the half.)
The second half got off to a rough start on special teams as well, as Florida had to use a timeout to avoid a 12 man on the field penalty from their punt block unit, then got a 15-yard roughing the punter penalty to prolong the Sooner drive. Everything changed at the 1:30 mark of the third quarter, though, as Jimmy Stevens attempted to draw Oklahoma within 14-10 with a 49-yard field goal.
Carlos Dunlap blocked the field goal try and Dustin Doe recovered the ball at Florida's 32. Even though Florida went three and out on the ensuing possession, it was the biggest play either team made on special teams all night. Like the game itself, it wasn't the Gators prettiest effort, but it got the job done.
The Associated Press poll was released around two hours after the conclusion of the championship game. Despite 16 voters putting Utah in the top spot, Florida was comfortably selected the AP's national champion as well as the BCS's. Florida finished with 1,606 points, comfortably outpacing Utah's 1,519. Southern Cal was third with one first place vote.
Florida's Louis Murphy had to exit the game twice due to leg cramps. The wide receiver is scheduled to take part in the Senior Bowl, although he says there's now a chance he may not.
What appeared to be an ugly injury to redshirt freshman tailback Chris Rainey turned out not to be as bad as initial replays indicated. According to teammate Mike Pouncey, Rainey was diagnosed with a high ankle sprain
FIVE IS THE MAGIC NUMBER
With the victory, Tim Tebow becomes just the fifth player since 1950 to win two national titles and a Heisman Trophy. The others were USC's Reggie Bush and Matt Leinart earlier this decade, Miami's Gino Torretta, and Nebraska's Johnny Rodgers.
Urban Meyer becomes the fifth active coach with two national titles, joining FSU's Bobby Bowden, Penn State's Joe Paterno, Arizona State's Dennis Erickson (with Miami) and USC's Pete Carroll. Only Meyer, Bowden and Paterno have two outright titles.
There were many critical plays for the Gator defense in Florida's win, but Torrey Davis may have had the biggest when he blew up an Oklahoma rush attempt on 4th-and-goal to keep the score tied at seven. Davis has been in and out of Urban Meyer's doghouse this season, so his teammates particularly appreciated his performance against the Sooners.
"That was huge. When his number was called, he got in and made a play," said linebacker Ryan Stamper.
As for Davis, he seems to have finally bought into Meyer's message.
"We ain't got no punks on this team," he explained to media members after the game.
HAIL TO THE CHIEF?
Former US President Bill Clinton attended the game. His appearance on the Jumbotron was loudly booed by the crowd.
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