The Gator defense dominated Kentucky virtually the entire night, but it doesn't seem to matter.
Florida finally a blocked punt and it became a touchdown for Chris Rainey, but that also doesn't seem to matter.
All that matters in the aftermath of a 41-7 SEC win on the road is the health of the franchise, Tim Tebow.
Tebow took a nasty shot late in the third quarter and appeared to suffer a concussion. The blow to the back of his head was actually inflicted by a teammate's knee as the Gator QB fell backwards after being drilled by Kentucky's Taylor Wyndham. Tebow stayed on the sidelines for a while but was later taken to the hospital after becoming nauseous.
Never has an off-week come at a better time.
It Never Should Have Happened
The shot Tebow took should never have taken place. Just a few plays earlier Jeff Demps had run 13 yards for an apparent TD but it was called back for a holding penalty on Florida tight end Aaron Hernandez. Multiple replay angles proved the call was a complete fabrication by an official who was right on the play but apparently guessed that Hernandez must have been holding.
Then on the play when Tebow got hit Florida sophomore offensive tackle Matt Patchan blocked down and never looked at his man coming clean. This wasn't a cleverly disguised blitz. It was a defensive end coming up field in as basic a rush as you could see. But Florida didn't see it, and Tebow never knew what hit him.
Now the Gators will learn a little more about the toughest, gutsiest person to ever play football in Gainesville – or anywhere else for that matter. We'll learn about Tebow's status as the days go by but there was a collective gasp in Gator Nation the likes of which we have never heard before. If all goes well, it won't be heard again.
But just in case, Florida might want to scrap trying to throw out of an empty backfield until the pass protection improves. I have never been a fan of going "empty" because it guarantees that your quarterback will get hit a lot. Now that Florida's "Superman" has taken a serious hit the Gators might well reassess if the reward is truly worth that risk.
Florida ended up out gaining Kentucky by more than 300 yards (495-179) in the game with Tebow (126) and Demps (97) leading the way. Emmanuel Moody (57), Rainey (36) and freshman Mike Gillislee (39) also contributed to a 362 yard day on the ground.
Florida was sensational against Kentucky's top two playmakers. Running back Derrick Locke gained just 36 yards on three carries while receiver Randall Cobb caught five passes for a total of just 24 yards.
Florida's secondary held Mike Hartline to 13-of-28 passing for just 85 yards. The Kentucky QB did hit one touchdown pass, but he was intercepted by both Major Wright and Janoris Jenkins.
The Gators have now won 23 straight over Kentucky and enjoy a 2-0 start in SEC play. The last time Kentucky beat the Gators Tim Tebow had not yet been born.
Tebow Injury Overshadows Superb Win
Fightin Gators Top Stories
Burning questions about Gators’ DB'sWe put it to the members of our community at Fightin’ Gators to come up with the hard hitting questions they want answers to when it comes to this 2016 Florida football team. This…
Fightin GatorsYesterday at 11:46 PM
Burning questions about Gators’ LinebackersWe put our insider members to the test to come up with the hard hitting questions about the linebacker position at the University of Florida. I took it upon myself to answer them…
Fightin GatorsYesterday at 3:07 PM
FL's No. 1 ATH in 2018 Shines in Season DebutCLEARWATER, Fla.--- Scout dishes out week one highlights of Florida's top-ranked athlete in 2018 and Scout 300 prospect, Amari Burney.
Scout FootballYesterday at 12:02 PM
Shawn Davis Picks the GatorsShawn Davis picks the Gators. The three-star cornerback from Miami Southridge discusses his decision to commit to Florida with FightinGators.com.
Scout FootballYesterday at 10:16 AM