MIAMI — After missing the first five weeks of practice and the opener while recovering from a viral infection, Florida sophomore RB Matt Jones made his anticipated season debut Saturday afternoon against Miami.
Jones, the Armwood High alumnus, had 18 carries for 47 yards, but his fumble on the Gators' opening drive led to a Miami touchdown.
"I thought he ran well," Florida coach Will Muschamp said. I thought the fumble … we need to hold onto the ball. It was a good tackle on their part, put his hat on the ball. We've given Matt plenty of contact going into that situation. So I think that was a good hit on their part."
INJURY UPDATE: A preseason of injury woes for the Gators' offensive line has become a issue during the regular season. LT D.J. Humphries aggravated the sprained left knee ligament he sustained during the opener against Toledo and did not play in the second half.
OL Tyler Moore was in a walking boot following the game after sustaining a sprained left ankle. It was the culmination of a tough day for Moore, who had two holding calls.
CB Marcus Roberson, a Fort Lauderdale native, suffered a strained knee late.
The status of the three has not been determined.
FAMILY TIES: Florida WR Quinton Dunbar was looking forward to facing his cousin, Miami LB Denzel Perryman. But Perryman walked away with bragging rights — and a top-notch performance. His hit caused Jones' fumble on the opening drive. He also was the Hurricanes' leading tackler with nine solo and four assists.
"I'm feeling great," Perryman said. "Their offense is very physical, but we were prepared for it."
Dunbar had career highs in receptions (seven) and yards (98), but the homecoming was bittersweet for the Miami native.
"We lost the game," he said. "So I'm not really thinking about the rest of it right now."
STAT COMPARISON: Miami had two passing plays that accounted for 88 of its 212 total yards, including Phillip Dorsett's 52-yard touchdown. On their 51 other plays, the Hurricanes gained just 124 yards.
MAKE THAT TWO: Florida freshman CB Vernon Hargreaves continues to make an impact. In just two games, the graduate of Tampa's Wharton High has two interceptions. Early in the fourth quarter Saturday, he stepped out of bounds just before breaking free into the open field.
ONCE MORE: After sitting out the opener because of a suspension, CB Loucheiz Purifoy blocked a punt that led to the Gators' first touchdown. It was the third punt block of his career and Florida's 13th among Muschamp's 28 games.