Let’s review our countdown so far:
#10 Matt LaPorta sets career home run mark
#9 The ’04s Declare for the NBA Draft
#8 Chris Leak sets all-time passing mark
His inability to lead the Florida Gators into the SEC Championship game had always stigmatized Chris Leak. So it was ironic that in his first trip to Atlanta, and in the Gators’ first conference championship since 2000, Leak surpassed Danny Wuerffel’s passing record.
Leak had already passed either Wuerffel or Shane Matthews in completions, attempts and total yards, so the passing yards mark was the only record attainable by Leak left standing. After completing 16-of-30 passes for 189 yards, Leak helped lead the Gators to a 38-28 win over Arkansas, and finished the night with exactly 11,000 yards – 125 more than Wuerffel.
Leak would follow up the SEC Championship by leading the Gators to their second national championship. He completed 25-of-36 passes for 213 yards against Ohio State to finish his career with 11,213 total yards passing. Just about the only category Leak didn’t break during his stellar Gator career was total touchdowns. He finished with 88, which ranks him second all-time behind Wuerffel who tossed 114 during his career.
Leak finished his career 35-12 as a starter, throwing for more than 200 yards 33 times, which also ranks him first all-time. He has thrown for more than 300 yards seven times. He also broke Steve Spurrier’s mark by completing 17 consecutive passes in a game.
It may have taken until the very last game of his career for Gator fans to fully appreciate his accomplishments, but his list is impressive. He became the first quarterback since Kerwin Bell to beat Florida State in consecutive seasons and finished his career with seven straight wins against FSU, Georgia and Tennessee.
UF's Career Passing Leaders
1. 11,213..............Chris Leak, 2003-06
2. 10,875..............Danny Wuerffel, 1993-96
3. 9,287................Shane Matthews, 1989-92
4. 9,164................Rex Grossman, 2000-02
5. 7,585................Kerwin Bell, 1984-87