Gators destroy Owls 41-3 in Will Muschamp's head coaching debut
The Will Muschamp Era started in an odd, but satisfying fashion for Florida (1-0, 0-0 Southeastern Conference) against Florida Atlantic (0-1, 0-0 Sun Belt) in "The Swamp" Saturday night.
The orange-clad Gators handily defeated the Owls 41-3 in front of the first non-sellout crowd at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium since 1989.
However, the unusual lack of fans in the stands did not stop Florida from putting on a performance miles better than the 2010 opener.
Only one snap sailed over John Brantley's head as the embattled redshirt senior quarterback completed 21 of his 30 passing attempts for 229 yards and a touchdown.
Granted, Brantley did throw two interceptions (including one in the end zone), but never has he looked more confident during his time as the starting signal-caller for the Gators.
Jeff Demps was another bright spot for Florida, tallying 105 rushing yards and two touchdowns on 12 carries, but the spotlight belonged to Chris Rainey.
In addition to racking up 168 all-purpose yards, Rainey blocked a punt and became the first Gator to ever score a rushing touchdown, a receiving touchdown, and a kick return touchdown in a single game.
Florida will take the field again next Saturday, playing host to UAB at home.
Kickoff is at 7:00 p.m and the game is scheduled to air on ESPN3.com.
Photo taken by Sam Greenwood, Getty Images.