- Mike DiRocco, ESPN Staff Writer
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NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- Jeff Driskel can't keep his secret any longer.
Not with 40,350 witnesses.
Florida's sophomore quarterback had hoped to be able to keep his speed quiet, but it's hard to do that when you're 237 pounds and you're running away from defensive backs.
That's what he did on his 70-yard, fourth-quarter touchdown run that clinched the fourth-ranked Gators' 31-17 victory against host Vanderbilt on Saturday night. Driskel kept the ball on the zone read, went around right end, and sprinted down the sideline past a safety and a cornerback.
"I tell you," Florida linebacker Jon Bostic said, "the boy can run."
And now everybody knows it. Driskel ran for 177 yards -- the most in school history by a quarterback -- and three touchdowns on only 11 carries to help the Gators (6-0, 5-0 SEC) beat the Commodores (2-4, 1-3) for the 22nd consecutive time. In addition to the 70-yard touchdown run, he also scored on a 37-yard run. His other touchdown was a 13-yarder.
It was a huge performance -- and a better one than even Tim Tebow managed on the ground (his best was 166 yards against Ole Miss in 2007) -- and one the Gators desperately needed. By the end of the first half, Florida was down three starters on the offensive line because of injuries and also had lost tight end Jordan Reed, UF's leading receiver, for a significant portion of the game to injury.
1dSam Khan Jr.
2dSam Khan Jr.