4 BITS: Driskel, Baker, Demps, Patton, Murphy

By Adam Silverstein
October 22, 2014

1 » Florida Gators redshirt junior quarterback Jeff Driskel reportedly missed at least some portion of practice ahead of the Missouri game while dealing with a right ankle injury, which became more apparent last Saturday when his ankle was heavily taped before the contest. Driskel also hardly ran the ball in the game, just one week after carrying it 21 times. While it is currently unknown whether the still-imploding Driskel will get the start against Georgia on Nov. 1 – head coach Will Muschamp may address that very topic during his only media appearance of the week, the SEC teleconference on Wednesday – it looks like he is still missing some practice time.

OnlyGators.com reader Jeremy sent in the following photo, which he snapped Tuesday on his way to the Stephen C. O’Connell Center for an event. In the photo below, freshmen Treon Harris and Will Grier (dressed in full pads) are leading the pack of quarterbacks out to the practice field while Driskel is bringing up the rear, holding his helmet but neither wearing pads nor football pants.

I was taking my kids to see Sesame Street Live at the O’Dome tonight. When we parked, we noticed the football team going to the practice field. The players were upbeat and giving my kids high-fives. Then the quarterbacks walked by. Treon Harris and Will Grier led the way and looked focused. Driskel was at the back. No pads, no pants. He looked like a player who wasn’t practicing. Muschamp walked by, smiled and looked like a beaten soul.

2 » Four-star linebacker Jerome Baker (Cleveland, OH), committed to the Gators since July, was the highest-rated player in Florida’s 2015 recruiting class (No. 36 overall nationally)…until Tuesday, when he decommitted from the program and flipped to Ohio State. The Gators now have just 10 players (three rated as four-stars) committed for 2015; Florida’s recruiting class is ranked 60th in the nation. There are still nearly four months to go until National Signing Day, but UF is on its way to its lowest-ranked class since 2002 (No. 20, Ron Zook’s first season). Here are the Gators’ class rankings from 2002-14: 20, 2, 10, 15, 2, 1, 3, 11, 2, 12, 3, 4, 8.

3 » The Indianapolis Colts on Tuesday signed former Florida running back Jeff Demps to their practice squad. Demps, who has spent time with New England and Tampa Bay but barely seen NFL regular-season action, will look to get called up to Indianapolis’ active roster as a return specialist. Demps joins center Jonotthan Harrison, left tackle Xavier Nixon (injured reserve-designated to return) and cornerback Loucheiz Purifoy on the Colts. Also on Tuesday, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers waived wide receiver Solomon Patton, the team’s primary return specialist up to this point in the season.

4 » Speaking of cuts, Boston Celtics head coach Brad Stevens announced Tuesday that the team would be releasing forward Erik Murphy rather than carrying him onto their active roster for the start of the 2014-15 season. Murphy, a life-long Boston fan, has gone from the Chicago Bulls (drafted) to the Utah Jazz (waivers) to the Cleveland Cavaliers (traded) to the Celtics (traded) all before the second season of his professional career. It is unclear whether he will get an opportunity to tryout and potentially earn a spot with another NBA franchise. If not, he will certainly have opportunities in professional leagues across the globe.

20 Comments

  1. cline says:

    The mantra of you play like you practice looks valid now.

    Hopefully the coaches are developing a game plan to help Harris have success against UGA. It would be nice to see the o-line move the pocket and let Harris get some roll out passes etc. and make UGA cover the whole field.

    GO GATORS!

    • G2 says:

      Exactly, they will be bringing the blitz from everywhere so gotta make them pay. That of course implies that the receivers actually catch the ball!

      • cline says:

        From what I have seen from Harris he is pretty good on the move. I got my fingers crossed we get a good game plan together for this one.

        GO GATORS

  2. Babs says:

    Driskel did get banged up last game… probably why he isn’t in pads. DUH!!!

  3. G8trATL says:

    Thanks for the insight. I don’t think there is too much into Driskel in shorts as I doubt he is 4th or 5th string. To me what is more telling was the observation made that Muschamp “looked like a beaten soul”.
    When is SEC Press Conf today? Hopefully there will be more than “softball” questions asked to break up the same Muschamp Press Conf answers.

  4. Todd says:

    No takeaway can be inferred other than Driskel didn’t dress out.

    And, it’s a bye week.

    • Dave Massey says:

      I don’t think Driskel is a competent quarterback, but I do think the guy is tough. You don’t walk off the field with a broken leg or take a lot of the hits he has been taking and get up and go back in if you aren’t tough.

  5. BillyBob says:

    I will not be attending the UF vs UGA game next weekend, which I’ve attended for 15 straight years. I will not support a Will Muschamp-led team. I’m so angered at Foley for not getting rid of Muschamp after last week’s loss to Missouri. Still makes me sick to my stomach. Even if we do beat UGA this year, Muschamp must go!

  6. Michael J. says:

    Based on the results on the field since Tim Tebow left, with the exception of 2012 which is an anomaly, having highly rated recruiting classes has not made an impact on Florida’s win/loss record. The conclusion: why worry about recruiting rankings, it hasn’t made the slightest difference. Let’s just hope the new coach has a vision of what kind of players he wants and is not woried about the number of stars they have. It seems to work for Gary Pinkel, who continually has low rated classes but still fields a team that can compete in the SEC.

    • Ken (CA) says:

      That’s right, the 2012 defense was an anomaly, had nothing to do with recruiting at all. Not a single one of those kids are playing in the NFL

  7. BillyBob says:

    If you’ve paid attention to UF recruiting since Meyer left, fact is Muchamp has not recruited well. Outside of VH3 and D.J. Humphries, we haven’t landed any 5 stars. Not that stars mean anything Urban landed mainly 4 and 5 stars consistently during his tenure. And his 4-star kids were studs. Muschamp’s recruits have all been overrated. I don’t think he’s done a good job of evaluating kids and their upside, as far as their skills translating over to the college game. The kids that Muschamp have fielded just have not been the explosive playmakers we’ve been accustomed to seeing at UF. Also, Muschamp has done a poor job in the skill development of our players in my opinion. Our players during his tenure haven’t improved from year to year. And people forget the fluke 2012 season was comprised of all Meyer’s recruits. After they left the program with south. Gillislee, Reed, Floyd, Bostic, and Elam were all Meyer recruits.

    • Robinson, Taylor, Fulwood, Fowler, Neal, Tabor. These are all very highly-rated guys.

      • Ks Gator says:

        The guys listed there are studs. I am most excited about Tabor!

        • Ken (CA) says:

          I believe there will be quite a few more that we haven’t seen yet as well. Contrary to what several here have said, the cupboard will not be empty for the next coach. May not be really deep, but there is going to be quite a bit of talent on both sides of the ball. And if you say what? offense? well, look at our running backs, harris/grier, and those are the obvious ones, who knows what we haven’t seen yet

    • senuod says:

      The lack of offensive development ultimately falls on Muschamp, but we can’t kid ourselves and think three different OCs in four years doesn’t have an effect. The worst thing for our offense has probably been the amount of turnover in offensive coaches.

      Defense, we’ve maintained most of the same coaches and it shows in the defensive production. The opposite is our problem on offense.

      • Rakkasan says:

        It’s a shame about Baker because linebacker is a position that seems to be nonexistent for the Gators.

    • Dave Massey says:

      Meyer had plenty of highly rated recruits who didn’t do well. Brantley was a Meyer recruit, Powell was No. 1 in the country and he was certainly no Clowney, Driskel was a highly rated Meyer recruit, Patchan was a 5 star who did nothing (yes I know he was always hurt), and there were quite a few more.

      All the top schools have highly rated recruits who don’t work out. It is difficult to correctly analyze high school talent because the competition is not always very good.

  8. Dan says:

    Although this is trivial, the picture appears to show the players actually walking towards the stadium ( see the heisman statues left center of pic) and back IN from practice. Driskel doesnt need any of our help to look bad. He knows his play has done enough.

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