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Oklahoma Sooners crush Florida Gators in Cotton Bowl

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Oklahoma Sooners crush Florida Gators in Cotton Bowl
Oklahoma head coach Lincoln Riley and the Sooners celebrate their victory over the Florida Gators in the Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic on Wednesday at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas. The Sooners defeated the Gators 55-20. Photo by Ian Halperin/UPI | License Photo

Dec. 30 (UPI) -- The sixth-ranked Oklahoma Sooners cruised to a 55-20 win over No. 7 Florida in the Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic on Wednesday at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas.

Sooners freshman quarterback Spencer Rattler accounted for four touchdowns to guide Oklahoma (9-2) to a decisive win over the short-handed Gators. He completed 14 of 23 passes for 247 yards with three touchdowns.

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The Sooners' running game aided Rattler in his first bowl game, as Oklahoma racked up 435 rushing yards on 40 carries. Senior tailback Rhamondre Stevenson, who was named offensive MVP of the game, led the team with 18 carries for 186 yards and one touchdown.

Fellow freshman running back Marcus Major notched 110 yards and one score on nine rushes. Rattler added seven carries for 40 yards and one rushing touchdown.

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Gators senior quarterback and Heisman Trophy finalist Kyle Trask, who was playing without his top four pass-catchers, struggled against the Sooners, completing 16 of his 28 pass attempts for 158 yards and three interceptions in what could have been his final college game.

Florida (8-4) lost wideouts Trevon Grimes and Kadarius Toney before the game, with both players opting out to prepare for the upcoming NFL Draft.

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Star tight end Kyle Pitts also declined to participate, while sophomore receiver Jacob Copeland was unable to compete after testing positive for COVID-19. They were among 17 players that Florida said were unavailable to play.

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The Sooners jumped out to a 17-0 lead in the first seven minutes of the game. Oklahoma's 55 points were its most ever in a bowl game, and the team piled up a Cotton Bowl-record 684 total yards.

Florida cut it to 17-13 midway through the second quarter but gave up two Oklahoma touchdowns before halftime to fall behind 31-13 at the break. The Sooners scored the next 24 points in the second half to take a commanding 55-13 lead.

The Gators got a late 27-yard touchdown from Jordan Pouncey but failed to close the gap any further.

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Florida backup quarterback Emory Jones was 8-of-16 passing for 86 yards and added 10 carries for 60 yards and a touchdown. Dameon Pierce led the Gators with 11 carries for 60 rushing yards.

The Sooners finished the 2020 season on an eight-game winning streak. Florida failed to win a bowl game for the first time under head coach Dan Mullen, who was hired before the 2018 campaign.

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