Gator fans facing bleak reality as shock of Kentucky loss wears off

Florida Gators

Florida lost to Kentucky on Saturday night for the first time in 32 years. Having established that it wasn’t a only a bad dream, one big question surrounds the Gator Nation: now what?

Recovering from the loss will be harder on fans than players, or coaches. In fact, the team has to move on quickly because Colorado State visits Gainesville this Saturday; the same Colorado State team that just beat the Gators SEC brethren Arkansas.

When the shock of the Kentucky loss passes and you really begin looking at the numbers to understand why it happened, a bleak picture is painted.

Florida allowed over 300 yards rushing to the Wildcats.

300 yards?

Kentucky tailback Benny Snell had 175 yards on the ground on 27 carries, but he wasn’t the only Wildcat to break the century mark on the ground. Wildcat quarterback Terry Wilson added 105 yards rushing on 10 carries.

It doesn’t matter who you are playing, if you allow over 300 yards rushing in one game, odds are you will suffer defeat.

The Gators defense must improve its third-down efficiency. Florida could not get off the field on defense against Kentucky. The Wildcats were 9-13 on third-down including converting a third and one with under three minutes to go that basically put the game away.

Combine all that with the knowledge that Florida has lost starting cornerback Marco Wilson for the year with a torn ACL (the second one of his young football career) and there are real questions about what to do and where to go from here in defensive coordinator Todd Grantham’s defense.

At an absolute minimum, the rushing defense and third-down defense has to improve and improve now.

The Florida offense on Saturday night wasn’t much better. The Gators could get nothing going on the ground against Kentucky.

Quarterback Feleipe Franks was Florida’s leading rusher in the game picking up just 44 yards on 11 carries.

What happened to all the pre-season talk about running back’s Jordan Scarlett, Malik Davis and Lamical Perine? Combined, those three touched the ball just 15 times for 74 yards. Why only 15 carries for your top three tailbacks combined in a close and winnable game?

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