Florida fell to LSU in a thriller on Saturday, 49-42, and now appears to have a quarterback controversy in the aftermath. A post-game quote from freshman signal-caller Anthony Richardson has some Gators fans worried.
Junior quarterback Emory Jones started the game for the Gators, but didn’t play particularly well, and was eventually replaced by Richardson. Richardson made a few mistakes, but also led the Gators on four scoring drives that kept the team in the game. He finished 10-of-19 for 167 yards with three touchdowns and two interceptions, adding 37 yards and a touchdown on the ground.
Head coach Dan Mullen has not committed to a starting quarterback moving forward, and called Richardson a “developing” player after the contest. It’s unclear how that landed.
Per 247 Sports:
Dan Mullen told Anthony Richardson looks like a transcendent player: "We'll see… I love everybody labeling people. I mean he's a young quarterback learning and developing. That's a good label for him." #Gators
— Thomas Goldkamp (@ThomasGoldkamp) October 16, 2021
Nick de la Torre from Rivals posted a quote to Twitter that might not make Florida fans feel great about Richardson sticking around – assuming he’s not the starting quarterback sooner rather than later.
Anthony Richardson asked about fans worrying that he might transfer or leave: "I can't really speak on that. Time is the only thing that tells. Right now I'm a Gator."
— Nick de la Torre (@delatorre) October 16, 2021
Zach Goodall of SI’s Fan Nation also grabbed a quote from Richardson in the aftermath.
— Zach Goodall (@zach_goodall) October 16, 2021
There’s no doubt that Florida played better on offense with Richardson behind center. That said, it was just one game.
Mullen could help himself a lot by just admitting Anthony Richardson is good.
— Andy Staples (@Andy_Staples) October 16, 2021
Mullen, like Oklahoma’s Lincoln Riley, may have to make a tough decision on his starting quarterback that involves more than just play on the field in an era when signal-callers aren’t often willing to wait around to get their turn.
We’ll see how this one plays out. Florida next gets No. 1 Georgia in two weeks.