Alabama Football Flashback: 2005 Florida vs. Alabama

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Alabama Football Flashback: 2005 Florida vs. Alabama

There have been few games in the recent past of Alabama Football that have as big a place in fan's hearts as the 2005 game between Alabama and Florida. 

The Gators were coming into the game as the No. 5 team in the country with a 4-0 record and 2-0 in the SEC. 

First-year head coach Urban Meyer was sitting pretty entering the game, especially after a win over rival Tennessee two weeks prior at home. 

Alabama would be the No. 15 team in the country at kickoff, fresh off a home victory over Arkansas and a 4-0 record as well.  Not to mention 'Bama head coach Mike Shula was still looking for a signature win in his third year. 

Florida was an overwhelming favorite entering the game with quarterback Chris Leak and the top defense in the conference. 

Alabama was no slouch themselves with senior quarterback Brodie Croyle and receiver Tyrone Prothro in tow. 

Even with all the hype around this game, it wasn't even close. 

After the opening kickoff, Florida took the field and managed to fumble on the opening play, but recovered.  It would just be the start of a long day for the Gators. 

The Gators would eventually punt and Alabama would take over at their own 13 yard line. 

Then, the momentum of the game was established. 

Croyle would hit Prothro on the first play from scrimmage for the Tide over the top for an 87-yard touchdown.  Just like that, 7-0 'Bama. 

Florida would get the ball back and then Leak would throw his first of two interceptions.  Alabama would return the ball to the Gator two.  Two plays later, it was 14-0 Alabama and the rout was on. 

The teams would trade field goals to make the score 17-3 halfway through the second quarter.  Alabama would then strike again from distance.

After the Florida kickoff, the Tide took over at their own 35-yard line. 

 Croyle then hit Kieth Brown on a quick slant that worked to perfection for a 65-yard touchdown pass. That would be the last score of the half as the teams headed to the locker rooms at 24-3. 

Alabama would not miss a beat to start the second half, taking a six-play drive 80 yards for another touchdown pass from Croyle to Prothro for the last score of the game. 

It would have been a perfect day for the Crimson Tide if it wasn't for one horrific play. 

With ten minutes left in the game, Croyle tried to hit Prothro for yet another touchdown pass.  Prothro made the catch, but had reasons to drop the ball. 

Upon coming back to the ground, Prothro's left cleat got stuck in the grass and his left ankle would snap in a career-ending fashion.  That one play put a small damper on what was a great day. 

Alabama would close out the game and ride a 31-3 victory to 5-0.  

Croyle would finish the day 14-17 with 283 yards, three TDs, and no interceptions. 

Prothro would end his final game with five catches for 134 yards, and two touchdowns. 

Leak would not be as fortunate as Croyle in the stats column.  Leak went 16-37 for 187 yards, no touchdowns and two interceptions. 

Florida was held without a touchdown in this game for the first time since 1992 and it was the first Meyer coached team not to score a touchdown. 

The Tide would use this game as the signature win in a 10-2 season which included a Cotton Bowl victory.

Florida would eventually re-group and go on to a 9-3 season and a bowl victory over Iowa. 

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