Florida-Vanderbilt benches clear during brawl as Derek Mason, Dan Mullen get into it


Vanderbilt coach Derek Mason and Florida coach Dan Mullen got into a heated verbal exchange after a Gators player was ejected for targeting in the second quarter of Florida’s 37-27 win.

After Vanderbilt punted the ball with a little less than two minutes to go before halftime, Florida linebacker James Houston was called for targeting for a blindside hit on Dare Odeyingbo during the return. Odeyingbo stayed down near the Florida sideline, prompting Mason to come over and check on him. At that point, Mason appeared to get into an expletive-laced verbal altercation with Florida defensive coordinator Todd Grantham and Mullen.

Both benches cleared. As a result, both teams were called for unsportsmanlike conduct, and Florida starting linebacker Vosean Joseph was ejected. Houston also was ejected for targeting.

Joseph initially refused to leave the sideline, fighting Florida assistants as they attempted to lead him to the locker room.

During his halftime interview with ESPN, Mullen declined comment, directing questions to SEC commissioner Greg Sankey and SEC director of officials Steve Shaw. Mason said he would comment after the game.

But after the game, Mason and Mullen exchanged a long hug.

Mullen told ESPN’s Tom Luginbill: “Derek and I are really close friends. He’s great. He knows that. He’s doing an amazing job here: You just look at what he’s been able to accomplish going to bowl games, coaching this team, how they play, how they compete. He does an amazing job. He and I are really close friends.”

Source : http://www.espn.com/college-football/story/_/id/24973949/derek-mason-dan-mullen-verbal-altercation-vanderbilt-florida