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Florida QB Luke Del Rio injures knee, unlikely to play vs. Vols

Florida cruised to a 32-0 win over North Texas on Saturday, but a hit that resulted in a left knee injury for starting quarterback Luke Del Rio left Gators coach Jim McElwain irate.

McElwain, who thought the hit on Del Rio was dirty, reportedly was yelling at the North Texas sideline after the third-quarter play and had to be restrained by UF players.

The hit from defensive lineman Joshua Wheeler drew a personal-foul penalty, and Del Rio didn't return to the game after suffering the injury. McElwain said after the game that Del Rio likely won't play for the Gators next week against Tennessee.

"It doesn't look great, so we'll do whatever," McElwain said, per The Associated Press. "Somebody else will play and we'll get some guys ready and move forward and get ready to go play next week."

Former Purdue starter Austin Appleby will get the nod at QB if Del Rio is out.

Del Rio, a transfer who previously made stops at Oregon State and Alabama, is in first season as a starter. His father, Jack, is the head coach of the Oakland Raiders.

"When you see something like that, it's my responsibility when their parents aren't here to be their parents," McElwain said. "I care about these kids. They're mine. I see something like that, it ain't right."

Both teams left their respective sidelines in the heated aftermath of the play.

"He was trying to make a play and didn't mean to do it," said North Texas coach Seth Littrell. "We are not trying to take cheap shots here."

Del Rio has completed 61 percent of his passes this season for 762 yards, 6 touchdowns and 2 interceptions.

While losing Del Rio would be a big blow to the Gators, Tennessee will likely be without a key player of its own for next week's matchup.

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