World News – USA – Mullen: Exhausted Gators could have skipped the bowl


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Oklahoma dismantles Florida in Cotton Bowl 55-20, racking up seven touchdowns and 684 yards attack and forcing Gator’s quarterback Kyle Trask into three interceptions. (2:40)

Florida coach Dan Mullen said his team could have chosen not to play at the Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic on Wednesday night based on the availability of players, but still chose because the players wanted to compete.

After a blowout loss of 55-20 on No.. 6 Oklahoma, Mullen said his depleted roster would have been No.. Allowed. 7 alligators to skip the game.

« With the number of people out for the game, we were actually below numbers, » said Mullen. « We had the numbers not to play the game.

Mullen added, « I give credit to our boys. . . . Our young people wanted to play in this game and they wanted to have that experience and be on this stage. « 

On Tuesday, Mullen estimated that he would have 60 fellows available. The SEC has set a minimum threshold of 53 scholars to enter the game this season, but teams could choose to play even if they don’t hit that number. There were also minimums in three key positions: quarterbacks (one), defensive linemen (four), and offensive linemen (seven).

« I kind of saw – I don’t know, maybe that’s wrong – that wasn’t the 2020 soccer team you saw, » Mullen said of the Gators, who ended up 4-8 after making their final three Games. « Tonight, 25 players missed the 2020 soccer team. For us it was kind of a kick-start for the future, an opportunity for the young people to play. « 

Mullen added, « The 2020 team’s last game was 11 days ago [in the SEC Championship]. « 

Among the missing gators were several starters. Her top three recipients – Kadarius Toney, Trevon Grimes, and Jacob Copeland – were all out, as were Kyle Pitts. Grimes, Pitts and Toney were eliminated from the game as they prepared for the NFL draft, and Copeland was eliminated because he tested positive for COVID-19. The Gators were also without four defensive starters.

The missing pass catcher had a significant impact on quarterback Kyle Trask, a Heisman Trophy finalist. The senior threw three interceptions during the season and didn’t throw a touchdown after coming into play to his advantage at 43. Its degree of completion (57. 1%) was also a season low. Second quarterback Emory Jones also saw significant playing time in the game, attempting 16 passes and racing 10 times for 60 yards and a score.

Oklahoma (9-2) dominated Florida and finished with 684 yards, including 435 rushing. Earlier, coach Lincoln Riley said they had decided « we would be a team on a mission » and « we wanted to make a statement about the way we played. « . « 

Central Oklahoma Creed Humphrey said, « We saw the [Gators] opt-outs. We didn’t really care who canceled or who stayed for this game. We were ready to roll and go out and play them anyway, no matter who it was. We’re just glad they showed up and gave us the chance to play. « 

The Sooners also said they knew about the comments Florida linebacker James Houston made last week, calling Oklahoma « a good matchup » but « not our level ». « Oklahoma Freshman Wide recipient Marvin Mims said, » It definitely got the fire going, « and Sooners quarterback Spencer Rattler tweeted after the game, » It was a good matchup. « 

« I would be lying if I said we hadn’t seen what our opponent said, » Rattler said later. « We went out there and just did our job, performed, focused on what we needed to do as a group, and prevailed. « 

Florida Gators Soccer, Oklahoma Sooners Soccer, Cotton Bowl Classic, University of Oklahoma, College Football, Southeastern Conference, American Football

World News – USA – Mullen: Exhausted Gators Might ‘I Have skipped the bowl
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