Vanderbilt sacked Tim Tebow four times but gave up a pair of second-half touchdowns – one rushing, one passing – to the former Heisman Trophy winner and lost 27-3 to No. 1 Florida on Saturday at Gainesville, Fla.
Defensive linemen Steven Stone and Teriall Brannon, and linebacker Patrick Benoist each had one sack. Defensive end Tim Fugger and cornerback Eddie Foster shared the other as the Commodores (2-8, 0-6 in the Southeastern Conference) matched their season-high. They also had four in a non-conference victory over Rice back in September.
Overall, the defense held the Gators (9-0, 7-0) to 375 yards of total offense. That was 71.6 below Florida’s SEC-leading average of 446.6 yards coming into the game.
Ryan Fowler’s 32-yard field goal with 8:40 to play in the third quarter accounted for all of Vanderbilt’s points.
Warren Norman set up the kick with a 30-yard run. The freshman running back gained 63 yards on 11 attempts. He also set the SEC record for kickoff return yards in a season when he raised his season total to 951 with 99 yards on five tries.
The Commodores have been held to 10 points or fewer in every conference game this season.
Tebow scored on a 1-yard touchdown run with 1:52 to play in the third quarter. That made the score 20-3. His eight-yard touchdown pass to David Nelson with 9:22 to go
Florida’s first touchdown came on a 25-yard run by Jeff Demps on a fourth-and-1 in the second quarter.
Tebow finished the game 15-for-20 passing for 208 yards. He also rushed 16 times for 27 yards.
Vanderbilt quarterback Mackenzi Adams, in his first start of the season, was 13-29 for 100 yards with one interception.