Blue Raiders fall to No. 22 Florida

October 16, 2004 · MT Media Relations
WRIGHT OVER 100: WR Kerry Wright topped the 100-yard receiving mark today for the eighth time in his career and the third time this season with nine grabs for 112 yards. Wright's eight 100-yard receiving games rank second all-time at Middle Tennessee behind Kendall Newson's 14 he set from 1999 to 2002.

WRIGHT SCORES ... AGAIN: WR Kerry Wright's 37-yard touchdown grab in the second quarter against Florida was the senior's sixth of the season and the 17th of his career. The 17 receiving scores ties Tyrone Calico fourth place on the all-time list. Wright needs one more touchdown reception to tie Demetric Mostiller for third place.

MARKS IN TOP TEN: Sophomore QB Clint Marks, who passed for more than 200 yards for the sixth straight game, moved into fourth place on the single-season completions list today after collecting 25 in 37 attempts against Florida. Marks now has 162 completions on the season and is just five shy of third place Jonathan Quinn's total of 167 set back in 1997.

SMITH REMAINS STEADY: Sophomore placekicker Colby Smith, who took over the kicking duties this year, continued his steady play by nailing a 39-yard field goal in the first quarter, a career long 41-yarder just before intermission and a 27 yarder in the third period against UF. Smith is now 8-for-9 on the year and a perfect 18-for-18 on PATs. Smith's lone field goal miss was a 40-yarder at Louisiana-Lafayette.

0-FOR: Since joining the I-A ranks in 1999, Middle Tennessee has faced eight teams ranked in the nation's Top 25 including No. 22 Florida today. In those eight contests, the Blue Raiders are winless at 0-8. Two of those setbacks has come at the hands of the Gators.

POLITE GETS PICK: Roy Polite, from Jacksonville, Fla., registered his first collegiate interception when he picked off a Chris Leak pass late in the second quarter during the freshman's first defensive series of the game. It marks the second straight game that a Middle Tennessee true freshman has picked off a pass (Damon Nickson vs ASU), while breaking a streak of 101 straight passes without an interception by Leak.

TIDBITS: With five receptions today, running back Eugene Gross has registered 15 over the past three games to run his season total to 21, which is just four shy of equaling his career season-best of 25 ... For the third straight game, Middle Tennessee scored points on its opening drive with a field goal against the Gators ... The field goal in the first quarter marked the first points the Blue Raiders have ever scored at the Swamp after being shutout 55-0 in their only visit back in 2000 ... WR Kerry Wright has now caught at least two passes in 18 straight games ... The 37-yard touchdown catch by Kerry Wright in the second quarter was the fifth reception this season for Wright that covered at least 37 yards ... Middle Tennessee is now 3-8 all-time against teams from the state of Florida, including 0-2 this season ... TE Stephen Chicola, out of Jacksonville, Fla., made his first collegiate start today against the Gators ... The Blue Raiders are now 6-22 since 1999 on natural grass ... Middle Tennessee is now 2-11 against the SEC all-time.

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