After starting quarterback Jeff Driskel was lost to a season-ending ankle injury, Tyler Murphy led No. 19 Florida to five scores in a somewhat ugly game, helping the Gators open Southeastern Conference play with a 31-17 victory over Tennessee on Saturday.
Murphy had a 52-yard touchdown throw to Solomon Patton, a swing pass that went the distance, and made several plays with his legs as Florida (2-1, 1-0 SEC) won its ninth consecutive game in the series.
Murphy's 7-yard TD scamper in the fourth quarter made it 31-10 and sent fans scrambling for the exits.
The Volunteers (2-2, 0-1) had hoped to rebound from an embarrassing, 59-14 loss at No. 2 Oregon a week ago. Instead, Tennessee and first-year coach Butch Jones left Gainesville with another double-digit setback.
Jones' strangest decision might have been to bench Justin Worley and give redshirt freshman Nathan Peterman his first career start on the road and in front of 90,000.
Peterman, who grew up in nearby Jacksonville, had th...