The 2022 season was a dumpster fire for Florida football. Posting a 6-7 record for the second straight season, there was little to salvage from the year.
But for as bad as the record indicated Florida was, the Gators were closer to a great season than one may think. In all six of their regular season losses, because we would rather not remember the Las Vegas Bowl, the Gators were within one score in the second half.
As was the case all season, back-breaking play after back-breaking play doomed any chance Florida had to win.
ESPN has its win probability metric that updates throughout each game. The following six plays were the biggest swings in percentage against the Gators during all six of their regular season losses.
Florida Football Backbreakers: Richardson’s interception against Kentucky
1st & 10 at UK 39
(3:25 – 3rd) Anthony Richardson pass intercepted for a TD Keidron Smith return for 65 yds for a TD
Win Percentage – 61% Florida to 74% Kentucky
Coming off its massive win over Utah, it felt like the sky was the limit for Florida football in 2022. Against Kentucky, Florida found itself in a scrap, but it also felt like the Gators could snap out of it at any moment. It just needed one moment of magic from Anthony Richardson.
After Nay’Quan Wright picked up a first down off an eight-yard run, Florida had 1st and ten on Kentucky’s 39-yard line late in the third quarter.
One more first down, and the Gators would be in field goal range to retake the lead.
Except Richardson threw to the flat, and no one was home except Keidron Smith.
And he plays for Kentucky.
Sixty-five yards later, Kentucky had a lead it wouldn’t give back.