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Alabama-Florida football rivalry
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Florida Gators Alabama Crimson Tide

Sport(s) Football
Total meetings 37
Series record Alabama leads, 22–14
First meeting October 21, 1916
Alabama 16, Florida 0
Last meeting October 1, 2011
Alabama 38, Florida 10
Next meeting TBD
Largest win {{{largest_win_margin}}}
Longest win streak {{{longest_win_streak}}}
Current win streak Alabama, 3 (2009–2011)
Trophy none
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The Alabama-Florida Rivalry is an American college football between the Florida Gators and the Alabama Crimson Tide. Although both teams were charter members of the Southeastern Conference, they were never annual opponents. Nevertheless, the two teams have had some memorable games, including seven SEC Championship Game meetings.

The two teams first faced off in 1916. Since then, they have played sporadically, usually three or four times every ten years with SEC scheduling. Early on, Alabama, a perennial football powerhouse, dominated the on and off series. However, in 1990, when Steve Spurrier became the head coach of Florida, the rivalry started heating up, as both teams became championship contenders every year. But it was the birth of the SEC Championship Game in 1992 that really it up. Beginning with the 1992 SEC Championship Game, Florida and Alabama have met seven times in SEC Championship Games.

Site of the Game

The games have mostly been played on the teams' home campuses. However, the teams have also met in seven SEC Championship Games, the first two of which were played in Birmingham, AL, and the latter five of which were played in Atlanta. The teams have also met in Montgomery, AL, Jacksonville and Birmingham on some other, early occasions.

Series History

Alabama's Early Domination

The teams first met in in 1916. Alabama won that game, but the Gators won the next two. After that, however, the Crimson Tide went on a 15-3 run in the series, spread out over a 60 year period due to the teams not being regular annual opponents. Bear Bryant in particular was a major thorn in the Gators' side. His teams went 7-1 against Florida during his long tenure at Alabama. After Bryant lost his first game against Florida, his teams beat Florida by lopsided scores such as 46-15, 38-0 and 40-0.

The 1990's: Florida Turns The Tide

After Florida finally broke through with a win in 1987, the tide of the rivalry really began to turn in Florida's favor with the return of former Gator Steve Spurrier as the head coach. The Gators beat Alabama in 1990, 17-13, and then again in 1991 by a score of 35-0 the following year. Combined with the 1987 win, it was the first time Florida had ever beaten Alabama three straight times.

After Alabama won the inaugural SEC Championship Game in 1992, the Gators won four in a row, including three SEC Championship Games in 1993, 1994 and 1996. In 1999, however, Alabama pulled off a thrilling 40-39 overtime victory in Gainesville and then beat the Gators 34-7 a few weeks later in the 1999 SEC Championship Game.

The 2000's: Alabama Weathers The Storm

The teams didn't meet again until 2005, when Urban Meyer's Florida team traveled to Tuscaloosa to take on Mike Shula's Crimson Tide. Although Alabama won 31-3, the Crimson Tide had to vacate the victory due to the textbook scandal involving several of their players. The following year, Florida beat Alabama 28-13 in Gainesville, a major factor in the firing of Shula at the end of that season.

In 2007, Nick Saban took over as Alabama's head coach. In 2008, he guided top ranked Alabama to the SEC Championship Game, where second ranked Florida was waiting. The winner was all but guaranteed a slot in the BCS Championship Game. The Gators, led by Tim Tebow, erased a 20-17 fourth quarter deficit to win, 31-20, en route to a BCS Championship. It was the first ever No. 1 vs. No. 2 in the SEC Championship Game's history, but it wouldn't be the only time. The following year, Florida was ranked No. 1, and Alabama was ranked No. 2, and they met again for the SEC Championship with another BCS Championship Game bid on the line. This time, however, Alabama prevailed, 32-13.

The teams met again the following two seasons as part of their regular SEC schedules. However, both games were anticlimactic. Alabama won 31-6 in 2010 in Tuscaloosa in a game that was 24-3 at halftime. The 2011 game was a little more interesting. This time, Will Muschamp was Florida's coach. Florida scored a 65 yard touchdown just 20 seconds into the game. However, from that point it was all Alabama. The Crimson Tide won 38-10.

Notable Games

1990: Spurrier Returns With a Bang

In his first game as the Gators' head coach, Steve Spurrier enjoyed an easy 50-7 victory over {{Oklahoma State Cowboys football|Oklahoma State]]. However, the next week, his team traveled to Tuscaloosa to take on another first year coach, Gene Stallings and his Alabama team, a much tougher task.

Alabama scored an early touchdown to take a 7-0 lead. However, from that point, it was all Gators. Florida's defense, led by Huey Richardson, harassed Alabama QB Gary Collingsworth all day, and baited him into throwing three interceptions to Florida safety Will White. In addition, Florida's special teams blocked a punt for a touchdown to take a 17-13 lead midway through the fourth quarter.

Down 17-13 late with a few minutes to go, the Crimson Tide's offense engineered one last ditch drive. Collingsworth drove Alabama deep into Florida territory, but then faced a fourth down and 15. His desperation heave was picked off by White. Florida then ran out the clock to win, 17-13, and vault his program back into national prominence.

1992 SEC Championship Game: College Football's First Ever Championship Game

The first ever SEC Championship Game would go down as one of the greatest games in the history of the sport. It was the first ever conference championship game in college football, and after years of seeing its effects and excitement, other conferences would go on to create their own championship games as well.

This game, played at Legion Field in Birmingham, once again featured Spurrier and Stallings, a matchup of Florida's high powered offense against Alabama's stingy defense. Florida came in ranked No. 12 in the nation, while Alabama was ranked No. 2, and sniffing another national championship.

Florida scored first, on an Eric Rhett touchdown run, and Alabama responded by scoring three straight touchdowns, two of them by Derrick Lassic to take a 21-7 lead in the third quarter. Florida quarterback Shane Matthews then directed two touchdown drives, the second of which tied the game at 21 with about 8 minutes left in the game. The Gators' defense then forced Alabama to punt, giving Matthews the chance to lead the Gators to victory. Instead, Matthews was intercepted by Antonio Langham, who took it 21 yards for an Alabama touchdown. The Gators couldn't recover, and Alabama won, 28-21, en route to a national championship.

1993 SEC Championship Game: The Rematch

In a rematch of the previous year's SEC Championship Game, Florida, ranked #9, faced off against 16th ranked Alabama at Legion Field. Unlike the previous year's game, neither team was in contention for a national championship.

Early on, Florida quarterback Terry Dean threw a 45 yard touchdown pass to Jack Jackson to give Florida a 7-0 lead. The teams then traded scores back and forth, leading up to a 21-13 Florida lead entering the fourth quarter. After a costly Jay Barker interception, Dean led a long drive that was capped off by Eric Rhett smashing into the end zone with just a few minutes to play. Alabama couldn't recover, and Florida won, 28-13.

1994 SEC Championship Game: Nail Biter

For the third straight season, Florida and Alabama met in the SEC Championship Game. This time, however, the venue was moved to Atlanta's Georgia Dome. The Gators came into the game ranked 6th in the nation, while Alabama came in ranked 3rd; both teams had outside hopes of a national championship with a win.

Alabama struck first, as Jay Barker found Curtis Brown for a 70 yard touchdown. Florida QB Danny Wuerffel responded by hitting Reidel Anthony for a 26 yard touchdown pass to tie the game at 7. After both teams exchanged field goals, Wuerffel ran in a QB sneak to give the Gators a 17-10 halftime lead. Both defenses stiffened in the third quarter, however, as the only points came on two Alabama field goals to cut the Florida lead to 17-16.

With time winding down, Wuerrfel then threw an interception to Dwayne Rudd, who took it 24 yards for a touchdown, no doubt evoking memories of the game winning interception by Antonio Langham two years earlier. Interestingly, Alabama only went for one with an extra point try, rather than go for two and put themselves up by 7 points. Wuerffel erased his mistake and made Alabama pay for theirs, directing a drive that chewed up the rest of the clock, going 80 yards, and capping it off with a two yard touchdown pass to Chris Doering. The ensuing extra point gave Florida a 24-23 victory.

1996 SEC Championship Game: Shootout

For the fourth time in five years, Gene Stallings and Steve Spurrier brought their teams to the SEC Championship Game, again played in the Georgia Dome. The Gators came into this game ranked fourth, with dreams of a national championship still alive, while Alabama came into the game ranked 11th.

Unlike the previous two meetings in the SEC Championship, this game featured a slew of huge plays by both teams. After Alabama scored a quick touchdown to open the game, Danny Wuerrfel went to work, firing three quick touchdown passes to give Florida a 21-7 lead. After Florida kicked a field goal, Alabama appeared to be in major trouble, down 24-7. But the Crimson Tide, led by QB Freddie Kitchens, rallied to cut the lead down to 24-21.

But Alabama's defense just couldn't stop Wuerffel on this day, who responded by throwing a touchdown to Reidel Anthony to completely stop Alabama's momentum and extend the lead to 31-21. Though Kitchens would throw a 94 yard touchdown pass immediately following Wuerrfel's touchdown, Alabama's defense just couldn't stop Florida. The Gators won, 45-30.

1999: Overtime

The 1999 game between Florida and Alabama featured 3rd ranked Florida and 21st ranked Alabama in Gainesville. Alabama played Florida tough the entire way, leading to a 33-33 deadlock at the end of regulation to force overtime.

In the overtime period, Florida got the ball first, and scored. However, the extra point attempt was no good. Alabama got the ball next, and Shaun Alexander ran for a touchdown to tie the game. All Alabama had to do to win was make the extra point, but just like Florida, they missed the PAT. However, Florida was called offsides on the PAT, giving the Crimson Tide another chance. This time, the kick was good, and Alabama won, 40-39.

A few weeks later, Alabama would dismantle Florida, 34-7, for the SEC Championship.

2008 SEC Championship Game: A Rivalry Renewed

Alabama entered the 2008 SEC Championship undefeated, and ranked #1, while Florida came in with one loss, and ranked #2. The winner was guaranteed a spot in that year's BCS Championship Game.

The game started with Alabama going three and out. Florida got the ball and drove right down the field for a touchdown. Then, Alabama covered 80 yards in two plays on their next possession, the bulk of it coming on a Julio Jones catch and run, followed by a Glen Coffee touchdown run. The two teams then swapped field goals, and then Florida scored just before halftime to take a 17-10 halftime lead.

Alabama's Mark Ingram scored a touchdown to tie it in the third quarter. After an Alabama field goal, Florida trailed 20-17 entering the fourth quarter. Then Florida QB Tim Tebow took over the game, leading two long drives, capped off by touchdowns by Jeff Demps and Riley Cooper to put the game out of reach. Florida won, 31-20, en route to a BCS Championship.

The 2009 Governor's Bet

Prior to the 2009 SEC Championship Game, Alabama State Governor Bob Riley and Florida State Governor Charlie Christ made a friendly wager over the game. If Alabama won, Governor Riley would receive a box of Florida oranges from Governor Christ, while if Florida won, Riley would send Christ a rack of Dreamland Bar-be-que ribs. Alabama won, 32-13, and Christ sent Riley the oranges. This was the first time two state governors had ever bet on a college football rivalry game.

Game Results

Florida victories are colored ██ blue. Alabama victories are colored ██ crimson. Victories in gray have been vacated by the winning school and do not count in the record books.

Date Location Winner Score
October 21, 1916 Jacksonville, FL Alabama 16–0
November 11, 1921 Tuscaloosa, AL Florida 9–2
November 29, 1923 Birmingham, AL Florida 16–6
November 14, 1925 Montgomery, AL Alabama 34–0
November 13, 1926 Montgomery, AL Alabama 49–0
November 12, 1927 Montgomery, AL Florida 13–6
November 8, 1930 Gainesville, FL Alabama 20–0
November 7, 1931 Birmingham, AL Alabama 41–0
November 27, 1948 Tuscaloosa, AL Alabama 34–28
November 26, 1949 Gainesville, FL Alabama 35–13
November 25, 1950 Jacksonville, FL Alabama 41–13
November 24, 1951 Tuscaloosa, AL Florida 30–21
October 12, 1963 Tuscaloosa, AL Florida 10–6
October 24, 1964 Tuscaloosa, AL Alabama 17–14
September 26, 1970 Tuscaloosa, AL Alabama 46–15
September 25, 1971 Gainesville, FL Alabama 38–0
October 14, 1972 Tuscaloosa, AL Alabama 24–7
October 13, 1973 Gainesville, FL Alabama 35–14
October 14, 1978 Tuscaloosa, FL Alabama 23–12

Date Location Winner Score
October 13, 1979 Gainesville, FL Alabama 40–0
September 20, 1986 Gainesville, FL Alabama 21–7
September 19, 1987 Birmingham, AL Florida 23–14
September 15, 1990 Tuscaloosa, AL Florida 17–13
September 14, 1991 Gainesville, FL Florida 35–0
December 5, 1992* Birmingham, AL Alabama 28–21
December 4, 1993* Birmingham, AL Florida 28–13
December 3, 1994* Atlanta, GA Florida 24–23
December 7, 1996* Atlanta, GA Florida 45–30
October 3, 1998 Tuscaloosa, AL Florida 16–10
October 2, 1999 Gainesville, FL Alabama 40–39
December 4, 1999* Atlanta, GA Alabama 34–7
October 1, 2005 Tuscaloosa, AL Alabama 31–3
September 30, 2006 Gainesville, FL Florida 28–13
December 6, 2008* Atlanta, GA Florida 31–20
December 5, 2009* Atlanta, GA Alabama 32–13
October 2, 2010 Tuscaloosa, AL Alabama 31–6
October 1, 2011 Gainesville, FL Alabama 38–10

*Denotes SEC Championship Game.

Bibiography

http://rivals.yahoo.com/ncaa/football/news?slug=ac-7049454 http://www.alligatorarmy.com/2011/7/7/2257486/florida-alabama-rivalry-history-tradition http://espn.go.com/blog/ncfnation/post/_/id/33203/alabama-florida-rivalry-tops-the-decade http://aol.sportingnews.com/ncaa-football/feed/2010-08/alabamaflorida http://www.al.com/sports/index.ssf/2010/09/finebaum_alabama_and_florida_i.html http://www.rollbamaroll.com/2010/9/29/1595532/alabama-vs-florida-a-historical-retrospective http://bleacherreport.com/articles/477393-top-10-best-ever-games-of-the-florida-alabama-sec-rivalry http://www.gatorsports.com/article/20100721/ARTICLES/100729887 http://www.gatorzone.com/story.php?id=18811 http://www.al.com/sports/index.ssf/2010/10/solomon_alabama-florida_rivalr.html http://blog.al.com/spotnews/2009/12/sec_championship_alabama_gover.html

External links

Alabama Crimson Tide football
Venues
Bowls & rivalries
Culture & lore
People
Seasons


Florida Gators football
Venues
Bowls & rivalries
Culture & lore
People
Seasons
This article uses material from the Wikipedia article Florida-Alabama Football Rivalry, that was deleted or is being discussed for deletion, which is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
Author(s): Frietjes Search for "Florida-Alabama Football Rivalry" on Google
View Wikipedia's deletion log of "Florida-Alabama Football Rivalry"
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Southeastern Conference football rivalry games
This article uses material from the Wikipedia article Florida-Alabama Football Rivalry, that was deleted or is being discussed for deletion, which is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
Author(s): Dirtlawyer1 Search for "Florida-Alabama Football Rivalry" on Google
View Wikipedia's deletion log of "Florida-Alabama Football Rivalry"
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