It was an offensive fireworks display at the 2019 Blue and Orange Game on Saturday at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium.
Florida defensive coordinator Todd Grantham has earned a bit of a reputation.
The Orange Team defeated the Blue Team, 60-35. The Orange set the single-game points record in the first half with a 45-point effort (Blue Team, 44, 2016).
Here are the top performers from the highest scoring spring game in Florida history.
One Star: Kyree Campbell and Ventrell Miller
Campbell showcased his ability to clog rushing lanes and get to the quarterback.
The junior defensive tackle had 1.5 sacks, which led all players, and accumulated six tackles.
Orange Team linebacker Ventrell Miller led all defensive players in total tackles (8) and solo tackles (6). He was particularly effective in stopping the run. Four of his tackles were on rushes of three yards or less.
Two Stars: Feleipe Franks
The UF starting quarterback finished every drive with a touchdown, but he actually started his day as a receiver. The Orange Team ran a reverse pass on the game’s very first play, and Franks caught a 40-yard pass from wide receiver Kadarius Toney.
The signal caller found Toney for a touchdown later in the drive on third and 10 from the Blue’s 14.
Franks threw for 327 yards and four touchdowns on 13-of-18 passing. The only reason he didn’t warrant three stars was because his receivers were so wide open.
The Orange’s quarterback tossed a touchdown on the first play of his second drive. He hit a virtually uncovered Trevon Grimes in-stride on the left sideline for a 65-yard throw and catch. The Franks-Grimes connection also linked for a 61-yard touchdown at the 11:30 mark in the second quarter.
The Orange’s quarterback also connected with wide receiver Van Jefferson on an eight-yard touchdown only 18 seconds into the second quarter in his third drive.
“We saw him this spring make good decisions, being more comfortable in the offense, getting different reads and knowing where to go with the ball, and using the offense to make the plays,” coach Dan Mullen said of Franks. “Instead of trying to execute it, he is knowing when and how to make plays.”
Three Stars: Going Long
Both the Blue and Orange teams played simplified defensive schemes, allowing the receivers to run rampant. Five players (not including former UF receiver Chris Doering and his 69-yard score) averaged over 20 yards per reception on Saturday.
Grimes led all players in the category with a staggering 48.8-yard average. He caught two touchdowns of over 60 yards and added a 64-yarder where he was knocked out at the one. He totaled 195 receiving yards on Saturday, a Blue and Orange record (Dallas Baker, 176 yards, 2004).
Freddie Swain also caught two long touchdowns, both from Blue Team quarterback Kyle Trask. Swain hauled in a 29-yarder in the first quarter and 54-yarder in the second.
Tyrie Cleveland also received a 35-yard touchdown, and tight end Kemore Gamble caught two passes for 65 yards for the Blue.
Kadarius Toney also had multiple receptions of over 35 yards for the Orange.
“When we could go put three or four receivers out there, including the tight end, that are matchup problems, really just allows the quarterback to take what the defense gives you,” Mullen said. “And we’re great getting it to any one of those guys. And you’ve seen that, to me, of a guy like Trevon (Grimes) stepping up and being a mismatch out there on the field.”
Follow Mark Stine on Twitter @mstinejr and contact him at [email protected].