NCAA Game Summary - Bowling Green at Florida|
(Saturday, September 1st)
Final Score: (23) Florida 27, Bowling Green 14
Gainesville, FL (Sports Network) - Jeff Driskel threw a fourth-quarter
touchdown pass, and the 23rd-ranked Florida Gators escaped their season opener
with a 27-14 win over the Bowling Green Falcons.
Mike Gillislee gained 148 yards on 24 carries and scored two touchdowns in the
second quarter for the Gators (1-0), who finished the 2011 season, coach Will
Muschamp's first in Gainesville, with a 7-6 record.
Driskel had 114 yards on 10-of-16 passing.
Bowling Green's Matt Schilz completed 24-of-49 passes for 204 yards, but threw
one costly interception with his team in excellent field position.
An Omarius Hines fumble had given the Falcons (0-1), trailing by only three, a
short field with which to work late in the third quarter. The turnover
occurred moments after Bowling Green's Stephen Stein missed a 29-yard field
The Falcons gave the ball right back as Marcus Roberson picked off Schilz at
the Florida 16-yard line.
"That should've been a catch and a conversion, then we keep the drive
alive, but we didn't catch the ball and it got batted in the air and they made
a nice return on it and obviously that was a huge game changer," said Bowling
Green coach Dave Clawson.
On the third play of the ensuing drive, Driskel threw a pass to Frankie
Hammond that transformed into a 50-yard touchdown.
"We were just looking to get the sticks," Driskel said. "We wanted to pick up
the first down so I just wanted to give (Hammond) the ball and one-on-one he
made a good move. That was all him."
Caleb Sturgis then drilled a 51-yard field goal to give the Gators a 13-point
The Falcons opened the scoring on their second possession of the game. After
converting a pair of third downs, Chris Gallon caught a pass from Schilz and
slipped a tackle to set up a 1st-and-goal at the Florida 2-yard line. On the
next play, the 12th of a drive that began at Bowling Green's 11, John
Pettigrew took a handoff up the middle and a strong second effort propelled
him across the goal line for the touchdown with 1:17 remaining in the first
Florida immediately responded with a 13-play scoring drive, tying the game on
Gillislee's 15-yard dash to end zone. The touchdown came one play after the
Gators had converted a 4th-and-1.
Later in the second quarter, the Gators started a series inside Bowling Green
territory after a 16-yard punt. On the first play of the drive, Gillislee
shifted to the outside and scampered down the far sideline for a 38-yard TD.
Florida took the 14-7 lead into the break after Stein missed a 31-yard attempt
on the half's final play.
The Gators turned the ball over on downs at the Bowling Green 45 to begin the
third quarter. The Falcons gained only five yards before the special teams
unit took the field, but the visitors ran a fake as punter Brian Schmiedebusch
rumbled for the first down before he was levied out of bounds by Florida's
The late hit gave Bowling Green the ball at the Florida 27-yard line. Schilz
moved the chains with an 8-yard pass to Shaun Joplin on third down, and Anthon
Samuel tied the game with a 12-yard TD run.
Schmiedebusch then picked an inopportune time to shank another punt. Florida
took over inside the Bowling Green 20, but was forced to settle for a field
goal. Sturgis kicked a 34-yarder to put the Gators up 17-14 with 6:03 left in
Bowling Green registered 22 first downs, eight more than Florida ... The
Gators were whistled for 14 penalties, totaling 106 yards ... The Falcons went
5-7 last year ... Saturday's game marks the first-ever meeting between these
09/01 22:17:29 ET