Gators Blast Arkansas 63-35 Behind Kyle Trask’s Six TD Passes

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Photo Courtesy: University of Arkansas Athletics

After playing Florida to a 7-7 first quarter draw, Arkansas’ defense collapsed in the second quarter in the face of four touchdown strikes by Kyle Trask. The Gators’ fireworks overshadowed three big plays by the Hogs; a 47 yard touchdown strike from Feleipe Franks to Mike Woods, an 83 yard touchdown run by Trelon Smith and an 82 yard touchdown strike to Woods in the second half. The Gators had a 35-14 lead at the half and added 28 more points in the second for a 63-35 drubbing.

The Gators took the ball first in the game and the Hogs initially made them work. It took Florida 14 plays and 7:24 of clock time to score on a nine yard pass from Trask to Trevon Grimes. By contrast Arkansas needed just five plays and 1:30 on the clock to respond for a 7-7 game. The big play, that touchdown strike from Franks to Woods.

Arkansas stopped Florida on its next drive. A Trask pass on 4th and 1 at the Arkansas 16 was incomplete. Arkansas took the ball and drove to midfield but failed on a 4th down conversion of its own when a Franks pass was batted down on the first play of the second quarter.

Florida covered the 49 yards to the Arkansas goal line in nine plays. On 3rd and 11 Trask tossed his second touchdown pass of the game, this time on a blown Arkansas coverage, to a wide open Grimes for 23 yards and a 14-7 Florida lead.

A couple of false start penalties caused the Hogs to go three and out on their next possession. After a 39 yard Reid Bauer punt Florida set up on its own 29.

This time the Gators covered the ground to the goal line in two chunk plays; a Trask pass to Xavier Henderson for 43 yards to the Ark 21 and touchdown toss to Justin Shorter for a 21-7 lead.

Arkansas would respond. After a holding penalty on the kickoff, the Hogs set up on their own 17. On the first play from scrimmage Smith went through a huge hole off tackle and raced 83 yards on Arkansas’ longest play of the season, narrowing the Gators’ lead to 21-14.

Trask ate Arkansas’ lunch again with a 21 yard pass to Grimes to the Hogs 33 followed by a touchdown pass to Jacob Copeland as Florida jumped its lead to 28-14.

Yet another holding call on the kickoff forced Arkansas to start on its 11 where again the Hogs went three and out. Trask waited no time in taking advantage taking the Gators 53 yards on seven plays. His fifth touchdown of the half was a five yarder to yet another target, tight end Keon Zipperer for a 35-14 halftime lead. 

Arkansas bounced back with an impressive drive out of the dressing room. The Hogs covered 75 yards in nine plays. Rakeem Boyd made it 35-21 on a 12 yard touchdown run with 12:00 left in the third quarter.

Arkansas’s defense then got a stop on Florida forcing a punt from the Gators’ 39. This time the Hogs could not make a first down and it was punted back to the Florida 17. After an 80 yard drive, the Gators scored again, this time on the ground, on a one-yarder by backup quarterback Emery Jones for a 42-21 lead.

Arkansas managed just a first down before its next punt and Florida quickly had the ball back at the Gators 24. Trask then hit his sixth touchdown pass of the game. Florida quickly scored again off a bad exchange between Franks and Boyd. A scoop and score fumble recovery by  Zachary Carter jumped the lead to 56-21.

Still, Franks wasn’t ready to surrender. He hooked up with Woods again on another touchdown bomb, this one an 82 yarder, narrowing the score to 56-28. By then Trask had retired to the sidelines after going 23/29 in the game for 356 yards.

Jones led the Gators on their final touchdown drive of the night rubbing salt in the wound with a nine yard strike to Henderson for a 63-28 lead.

K.J. Jefferson entered the game at quarterback for Arkansas and could not move the chains. Anthony Richardson, Florida’s third quarterback on the night, then allowed the Hogs’ defense a takeaway on a Jalen Catalon pick at the Gators’ 23.

Jefferson ran the ball in from 12 yards out to make it 63-35.

Franks finished 15\19 for 250 yards passing and a pair of touchdowns. Smith had 118 yards on eight carries.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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