Mississippi State upset No. 22 Florida 10-7 - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

Mississippi State upset No. 22 Florida 10-7

GAINESVILLE, Fla. (AP) - Mississippi State ran early, ran late and ended up running out of the Swamp with a signature win for second-year coach Dan Mullen.

Vick Ballard ran for 98 yards, Chris Relf added 82 and a touchdown on the ground and the Bulldogs upset No. 22 Florida 10-7 on Saturday night.

Mississippi State (5-2, 2-2 SEC) controlled the clock, dictated the tempo and kept Florida's mostly inept offense on the sideline.

The Gators (4-3, 2-3) lost consecutive home games for the first time since 2003 and dropped three in a row for the first time since the Steve Spurrier era. Yep, coach Urban Meyer has accomplished something that even former coach Ron Zook never did.

The Bulldogs, whose victory over Florida in 2004 led to Zook's firing, won in Gainesville for the first time since 1965. They snapped a 16-game losing streak at the Swamp and left 90,000-plus wondering what happened to a program that won two of the last four national championships.

"We're not very good right now," Meyer said. Florida had a final drive to tie or take the lead, but Chas Henry missed a 42-yard field goal with 4 seconds remaining. The

Gators started at the 4-yard line with 2 minutes remaining and converted a fourth-down play to keep the drive alive.

But John Brantley threw a pass out of bounds to avoid a sack on third down, leaving the Gators with little chance but to try the field goal - a long shot for a punter who is handling field goals because of a back injury to place-kicker Caleb Sturgis.

Henry's kick missed way right, setting off a raucous celebration on Mississippi State's sideline. Players and coaches stayed on the field to sing the fight song with helmets and hands toward the sky, then ran into the locker room for even more frivolity.

Mississippi State won despite getting outgained by more than 100 yards.

Of the Bulldogs' 58 plays, 49 of them were running plays, including 24 in a row at one point. They gained 212 yards on the ground, averaging 4.3 yards a carry.

The Gators, meanwhile, looked lost on offense. They finished with 361 yards, but were plagued by two turnovers, three sacks and several dropped passes.

Florida's first half was one Meyer would like to forget. The Gators had 138 yards, including 17 rushing, and no points at home for the first time since 2007 against Auburn. Florida was flagged for five penalties, failed to convert two fourth-down plays, turned the ball over once and missed a field goal.

Meyer threw his headset after one failed option play in the second quarter, and was so frustrated he went for it on fourth down three times - including once from the Florida 39.

The Gators were so inept that Mississippi State actually ran the ball six times on seven third-down plays in the first half, surely trying to avoid mistakes and possibly believing a 10-point lead would be enough to break the losing streak in Gainesville.

Making things worse, Florida lost another potential playmaker to injury. With running back Jeff Demps already slowed by a foot injury, receiver Andre Debose left the field on crutches in the second quarter with a badly sprained right ankle.

After an 18-play drive in the second quarter that ended with a missed field goal, the Gators finally got on the board with an 80-yard drive to start the third.

Trey Burton and Omarius Hines sparked the offense, with Burton lining up at quarterback and Hines taking over at H-back.

Brantley remained in the game and lined up at mostly receiver. One of the few times he moved back to quarterback, it ended with a turnover. Brantley hit Demps with a swing pass, and Demps fumbled near the Mississippi State 20-yard line.

The Gators never got close again.

"You can point fingers all over the place," Meyer said.

 (Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.) AP-NY-10-16-10 2225EDT

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