1 » The Florida Gators on Sunday announced that senior forward Casey Prather (knee) is being listed as “doubtful” for Tuesday’s home contest against the Georgia Bulldogs as he is still dealing with a bone bruise he apparently suffered last Wednesday. Prather, Florida’s leading scorer who has posted double-digit point totals in all 14 game he’s played this season, has missed three practices already.
2 » The Independent Florida Alligator’s Adam Lichtenstein, citing an anonymous tip provided to the paper, uncovered a video posted on the Vine account of Gators four-star quarterback commit Will Grier (titled “Lax es gay”) that appears to show him using the homophobic slur beginning with “F” nine times before declaring, “[Lacrosse] is gay.” The video was posted to his account 269 days ago, exactly four months after he committed to UF. (The video linked above contains offensive language not condoned by OnlyGators.com.) As Lichtenstein correctly points out, “this is unacceptable behavior from Grier” and is something that should absolutely have been addressed by Florida. Though the school had no reason to address this publicly at that time – he was not a member of the program yet – one would think that those in charge of monitoring the social media accounts of Gators recruits would have strongly suggested he remove the video. After all, it has been hiding in plain sight for nearly nine months.
3 » According to Austin American-Statesman columnist Kirk Bohls, Florida wide receivers coach Joker Phillips is one of three men being considered by head coach Charlie Strong to serve as Texas Longhorns offensive coordinator. Phillips has spent five years in an offensive coordinator role, holding that exact position at Kentucky from 2005-08 and working as “head coach of offense” at his alma mater in 2009 when he was named Rich Brooks’s successor. Prior to that, Phillips spent 13 of 14 years coaching wide receivers and was widely considered a coach who had not been given a fair opportunity to move up in the ranks. He was head coach at UK from 2010-12 before being fired and taking over as the Gators’ wide receivers coach in 2013. Phillips is entering the second year of a two-year contract and is set to earn $265,000 this season.
4 » Florida wide receiver Solomon Patton made an impact on Saturday while participating in the inaugural Medal of Honor Bowl, an all-star game held in Charleston, SC. Patton was named the MVP of his American team after taking three receptions for 50 yards and a reverse for 33 yards; he put his team in position to score all three of its touchdowns and led it to a 20-3 win. “This whole week was a lot of fun, meeting all these guys and being able to play for these coaches,” said Patton, according to The Post and Courier. “This wasn’t the game I was expecting to be playing in, but I took advantage of it and I thank them for inviting me.”
Patton did not receive an invite to the Senior Bowl on Jan. 25; cornerback Jaylen Watkins, guard Jon Halapio and defensive tackle Dominique Easley did though Easley will not participate as he is still recovering from in-season ACL surgery. No Gators were invited to the East-West Shrine Game, though center Jonotthan Harrison will play in the NFLPA Collegiate Bowl on Jan. 18.
5 » It was widely reported Sunday that Strong hired former Florida offensive lineman (1977-80), graduate assistant (1982-83) and offensive line coach (2002-04) Joe Wickline to the latter position on his Texas staff. Strong coached with Wickline while under Ron Zook with the Gators. Wickline, who is originally from the Lone Star State, actually turned down the UT job two years ago to remain at Oklahoma State and is considered one of the top offensive line coaches in the nation…which makes it curious why he was not considered for the UF job filled last week by Mike Summers. Players he coached at Florida include Lomas Brown, Jeff Miller, Shannon Snell and Max Starks.
6 » Former Gators defensive coordinator Dan Quinn, who took the same job with the Seattle Seahawks after the 2012 season, led his unit to a top ranking as the best defense in the NFL this year. Now, just three seasons after never having worked as even a coordinator before, Quinn is a hot name for the Tennessee Titans head coaching vacancy. According to multiple reports, Quinn is at the top of Tennessee’s list, but the team will have to wait until after Seattle’s season ends…which could be in three more weeks on Feb. 2. Whether the Titans are happy to wait until that time to make a hire remains to be seen, but if Quinn really is the lead dog in the race, their actions over the next few weeks will be indicative of their infatuation with him as a candidate.