Instant analysis: Florida State 21, Florida 7

November, 26, 2011
11/26/11
10:37
PM ET
How the game was won: Florida quarterback John Brantley threw three first-half interceptions, two of which Florida State turned into touchdowns. Despite that, the Gators were able to move the football against the Seminoles. But once Brantley left the game after taking a blow to the head late in the first half, the Gators had little success with backup quarterback Jacoby Brissett. FSU stacked the line of scrimmage and stuffed Florida’s running game.

Stat of the game: Brissett's 6-yard touchdown pass to Quinton Dunbar with 4:16 remaining ensured the Gators would extend their streak of consecutive games without being shut out to 295. That's the longest streak in the Southeastern Conference. The last time Florida was shut out occurred on Oct. 29, 1988, when Auburn won 16-0 in Gainesville. Tennessee has the second-longest streak in the SEC at 222 games.

Unsung hero of the game: Florida’s offense wasn’t doing much anyway, but Florida State punter Shawn Powell made sure the Gators had bad field position throughout the game. He averaged 44.5 yards on nine punts and put five inside the 20-yard line.

What Florida learned: Saturday’s performance by the offensive line just put an exclamation point on how poorly the unit has played this season. The Gators were dominated up front again and had trouble creating running lanes. They also couldn’t handle Florida State’s speed. The unit returns four starters but it has a lot of work to do to be able to compete against better-than-average defensive fronts. Against an elite front like Florida State, the offensive line couldn’t match up.

What it means: The Gators are now 6-6, which is the first time they haven’t had a winning regular season since 1979. Florida went 0-10-1 that season. UF also has lost two in a row to its in-state rival and has been outscored 52-7 in those games. The Gators are headed to a bowl game -- likely the Gator Bowl in Jacksonville, Fla. -- and have to win that game in order to avoid their first overall losing season since 1979. Even Ron Zook was able to post three winning seasons.

Mike DiRocco | email

ESPN Jacksonville Jaguars reporter

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