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Samford blowing out Gators in Gainesville

That’s not Stanford, SAMFORD. Their campus is in Alabama, they’re FCS, and they’re the better team in The Swamp so far today.

Head coach Dan Mullen of the Florida Gators looks on during the first quarter of a game against the Samford Bulldogs at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium on November 13, 2021 in Gainesville, Florida. Photo by James Gilbert/Getty Images

Jimbo Fisher might have left Florida State, but his alma mater is taking care of the Florida Gators for him.

The Samford Bulldogs (4-5, 3-4 SoCon) lead the Florida Gators 42-35 at halftime in The Swamp. Samford has moved the ball at 8.0 yards per play, ran back a kickoff for a touchdown, and seem to be controlling the game on both sides. It actually shouldn’t even be this close.

Samford QB Liam Welch is 18-28 for 298 yards and two touchdowns, and while Emory Jones has been fine for Florida (13-16, 266 yards, 2 TD’s, 56 yards rushing and a touchdown), the Gator defense has been a complete embarrassment. With what appears to be no effort to stop the onslaught, they’ve allowed an FCS opponent to maul them at the point of attack with failed arm tackles galore.

Maybe firing defensive coordinator Todd Grantham midseason wasn’t the solution head coach Dan Mullen thought it might be.

Fortunately for the Gators, they do get the ball first for the second half. That second half line sits at UF -13.5, which is pretty amazing considering Florida closed as a 36.5-point favorite at DraftKings Sportsbook.