GAINESVILLE, Florida -- Drew Weatherford and Florida
State found out that "The Swamp" is a rough place to try to
salvage a season.
Weatherford was sacked five times, threw two interceptions and
was hounded all day as the 23rd-ranked Seminoles were manhandled
by Sunshine State rival No. 19 Florida, 34-7.
Coming off two straight defeats, the Seminoles (7-4) never were
in this one after a scoreless first quarter and only avoided
their first shutout since 1988 with a TD pass from Weatherford
to De'Cody Fagg with 6:35 remaining.
Florida (8-3) responded from a tough loss to former coach Steve
Spurrier and South Carolina on November 12 to improve to 6-0 at
home this season.
While Weatherford struggled, completing just 23-of-40 passes for
264 yards, Chris Leak had a strong game for the Gators, going
19-of-28 for 211 yards and a pair of touchdowns.
Leak's first TD pass of the game was an eight-yarder to Chad
Jackson early in the second quarter that gave Florida a 7-0
lead. The Gators took a 14-0 advantage into the break after
Marcus Thomas blocked a 44-yard field goal attempt by Gary
Cismesia and Reggie Lewis picked up the loose ball and scampered
52 yards for a TD.
Leak gave Florida a 27-0 lead in the fourth quarter with a
perfect 15-yard TD pass to Dallas Baker in the corner of the end
zone and Markus Manson made it 34-0 with a two yard TD run.
The banged-up Seminoles will face either Virginia Tech or Miami
in the Atlantic Coast Conference title game next week in