Kyle Trask Powers No. 6 Florida to 38-17 Victory over Winless Vanderbilt

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured ColumnistNovember 21, 2020

Florida quarterback Kyle Trask (11) passes against Vanderbilt in the first half of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Nov. 21, 2020, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)
Mark Humphrey/Associated Press

The 2020 college football season has seen some wild, unexpected results, in no small part because of the complications that have arisen from the COVID-19 pandemic. Strange enough for winless Vanderbilt to upset No. 6 Florida on Saturday, though?

Not quite. But it was a bit too close for comfort from Florida's perspective in the first half. 

Despite leading by just seven at halftime, the Gators moved to 6-1 on the year with a 38-17 win over the Commodores. Vanderbilt held a 10-7 lead after the first quarter before Florida reeled off 24 straight points to seize control of the game. 

It wasn't a signature win from the Gators, who looked sloppy at times, especially on offense. But they'll remain atop the SEC East with the win, leaving them three victories away from a berth in the conference title game. 

As for the Commodores, they moved to 0-7 with the loss. 


Key Stats

Kyle Trask, Florida: 26-of-35 for 383 yards and three touchdowns

Kadarius Toney, Florida: six receptions for 107 yards and a score

Kemore Gamble, Florida: three catches for 66 yards and two touchdowns

Ken Seals, Vandy: 22-of-34 for 319 yards, two scores and an interception

Chris Pierce Jr., Vandy: four receptions for 97 yards and two touchdowns

Cam Johnson, Vandy: seven catches for 93 yards


Kyle Trask Deserves to Be the Heisman Front-Runner

Trask shook off a shaky start to lead Florida to an ultimately convincing win, throwing three of Florida's four touchdown passes. His accuracy and poise kept Florida's offense cooking, keeping the team in the national championship conversation in the process.

Gators Football @GatorsFB

What a throw. What a catch. @ktrask9 ➡️ @Trevongrimes8 #GoGators 🐊 https://t.co/uenLttEwFU

It's time we start seriously considering the Heisman Trophy as Trask's to lose.

SEC Network @SECNetwork

Kyle Trask is the first player in SEC history to throw 30+ touchdown passes through the first 7️⃣ games of the season 🐊 https://t.co/CQGjaoXSGr

Edgar Thompson @osgators

#Gators had three 300-yard passing games in nine seasons before Kyle Trask took over at Kentucky. https://t.co/c93LOo68QB

Barrett Sallee @BarrettSallee

Kyle Trask is unreal.

No, he wasn't as big of a name as Justin Fields or Trevor Lawrence coming into the season. And it isn't as though those guys are having bad seasons. But Trask now has 31 touchdowns through seven games. Those are absurd numbers. If Trask keeps up this pace, he has to be the Heisman winner. 

And he's certainly made a strong case to be taken off the board in the early rounds come the 2021 NFL draft, too. 


Vanderbilt Is Knocking on the Door

In most cases, a 21-point loss won't introduce many silver linings. But Vanderbilt played Florida tough for a half before the talent disparity reared its head in the second half. 

Vanderbilt played Kentucky (38-35 loss) and Mississippi State (24-17 loss) tough too in its past two games. While the Commodores will be heavy underdogs when they face Georgia, matchups against Tennessee and Missouri are winnable. 

David Ubben @davidubben

Vanderbilt has gone from punching bag to competent in a hurry. Tennessee’s trip to Nashville next weekend looms strangely large.

SEC Network @SECNetwork

.@ChrisPierce02 COULD NOT BE STOPPED 💪 https://t.co/a50uiVfidm

By no means is Vanderbilt a good football team. But it feels like a team that might have a win in it down the stretch. That's something for head coach Derek Mason and his Commodores to work for in an otherwise tough season. 


What's Next?

Florida hosts Kentucky on Nov. 28 at noon ET on ESPN. Vanderbilt will host Tennessee that same day at 7:30 p.m. ET.