TE Christian, WR Clark to transfer from Florida

The Florida Gators announced Tuesday that sophomores tight end Gerald Christian and wide receiver Robert Clark plan to leave the program and transfer.

“Both of these players have expressed a desire for more playing time and felt that it would be in their best interests to transfer,” head coach Will Muschamp said in an official release from the school. “We wish them both the best of luck and appreciate their contributions to the program.”

Christian, who moved between tight end and linebacker in the spring before returning to his primary position this fall, had caught four balls for 72 yards and a touchdown this season. He played mostly on special teams as a freshman.

“I’m looking for an opportunity to play more,” said Christian in the same release. “I have no bad feelings about Florida or the coaching staff, I just want to get a fresh start and see the field more.”

Clark has barely played in 2011 after seeing brief playing time one year ago, catching seven passes for 69 yards and a touchdown in 2010.

“I’ve enjoyed being a part of the Gator program but at the same time I’m excited about future opportunities to play more,” Clark said. “I will have nothing but good memories from my time in Gainesville.”

Christian and Clark committed to Florida in 2010 along with sophomore safety Matt Elam; all three players were graduates of Dwyer High School in Palm Beach Gardens, FL with Christian and Elam the most highly recruited of the trio.

Elam played extensively as a freshman and is arguably the Gators’ most consistent defensive starter this season. He is second on the team with 43 tackles (3.5 for loss) and has two interceptions as well as a forced fumble.

The duo are the eighth and ninth players to leave Florida since Muschamp took over the team. Cornerback Janoris Jenkins was dismissed following two marijuana rests in less than 90 days. Defensive end Chris Martin, WR Chris Dunkley, WR Javares McRoy, running back Mike Blakely, TE Michael McFarland and LB Dee Finley transferred.

Tags: , , , ,

33 Responses to “TE Christian, WR Clark to transfer from Florida”

  1. Gio Showtime says:

    Two Questions:

    Does anyone think this will affect Matt Elam?

    Does anyone think this will affect the Gator’s performance this Saturday?

    • Alex says:

      Elam’s a starter playing the same position his head coach used to. He’s not going anywhere. These guys left for PT.

  2. GatorCooken says:

    That new 25 scholly cap sure is going to kill us now. Wish we could sign more this year.

  3. Brett says:

    So odd to me they would announce transfer in middle of the year. Christian must have seen Thompson coming next year and AC Leonard.

  4. Alex says:

    Man, we’re gonna have to Houston Nutt these next couple recruiting classes to get back to strength. Have transfers become more common in the past few years? Seems like these kids just keep jumping instead of waiting.

    • Tractorr says:

      Too bad teams can’t sign more than 25 players a year.

      • gatorhippy says:

        Just to clrify for my purposes…

        I thought the 25 max was if a school had 25 or less to offer, but if it has 30 schoolies open it can fill all of those…

        Is that not correct?

  5. SaraGator says:

    I’m starting to get a bad feeling with this coaching staff.

    Hope I’m wrong.

  6. Frank Derrick says:

    For every player that quits I’m thankful for those that still have the integrity to fulfill their commitment to the University. The self-centered, me-first attitude is becoming epidemic. If this keeps up we’ll just have to find the real men and have guys go both ways for 60 minutes…Iron man football…Here’s you a new team motto, Coach Boom: “Gator Football…It Ain’t for Sissies!”

  7. MG says:

    What the heck is going on with this program? I thought Muschamp was a players coach that they loved to be associated with? These transfers don’t give me a warm and fuzzy for future success with this coach.

    • Gatorgrad79 says:

      Something is going on, for sure. Maybe it is a change from the last couple years, when perhaps players were told whatever they wanted to hear, and now they are being told the truth – ” you’re 3rd, 4th, etc on the depth chart, and you have to beat out other men to move up…” . I’m seriously hoping it’s that rather than our whole program is a major cluster—-!

    • gatorhippy says:

      I think he’s a “players’ coach” as long as the player in question is a hard nosed competitive footballer…if a player simply wants their “due” and expects to see the field just because they’re sporting X amount of stars on their prep ranking…welll…he’s a “There’s the door” kind of coach…

  8. npgator says:

    Being from PB County it really hurts to see these local kids transfer but what can you do.

  9. Eli says:

    I hope we start seeing a trend where the Gators recruit real football players as opposed to athletes who happen to be good at football. Guys like this, and just to throw another name out there, Chris Dunkley, just aren’t guys that make good football players. Bad attitude.

    I love seeing guys who are just solid football players. Lutzenkirchen from Auburn is a guy I always point to as being a great player despite not being heavily recruited. I think our current freshman fullback Joyer will be extremely valuable. We need more of those players—hard nosed, play the game the right way, intelligent players.

  10. John S says:

    Sad to hear this, I thought both were going to be good players. It’s not like we currently have stud WR’s on the way (may change). Hopefully we are looking hard at JUCOs. We need athletes for next year.

  11. SC Gator says:

    Ehh… don’t let the door hit you on the way out guys. The whole transfer for more PT bit rarely seems to work out half as well as you would want it to…

  12. g8ter27 says:

    Ok, here is the thing. I completely get them leaving. With GC, they don’t play him now, he has Reed and Ac in front of him and they are recruiting about 27 other TEs (note more TEs to transfer down the road or Thompson bails out of his commitment). As for Clark, who knows how good he will be? fact is we have bigger and faster guys there now as freshman along with upperclassmen who we don’t use now. In fact, until reading this article, I forgot receivers were part of the offense. With us trying to get some big name receivers here he surely wouldn’t see more than special teams so I cannot blame him.

    Now what I don’t get is along with Finley, they leave in the middle of the year. Why? Is practice that hard? I mean you were not getting much PT but a little is better than nothing, especially if you look to go to another big time school. Wasn’t Clark the one who muffed the last punt at Auburn? not the way you want to go out at UF I would think I sure hope there is not more to this than PT.

  13. ncgator says:

    Oh god, lets start the panic and second guessing!!! The coaching staff sucks, players are leaving, recruits are bailing, play-calling sucks….have I missed anything? Jesus, does anyone out there read anything other than this website? Players are transferring from everywhere!!!(see Oklahoma today). Recruits de-commit daily!! The whole idea of a kid committing before next February is ridiculous, they change their minds faster than they can light a joint. Everybody take a deep breath, the gators will get their share. As far as this season is concerned, anyone out there who thought this team was better than 8-4 was living in dreamland. 9-3 will be a sensational season. How long did you think Demps and Rainey running outside was gonna work against real defenses? These guys are great option players, they are not pro-set backs! Additionally, the passing game, particularly deep is non-existent and even average teams know that (ie; Auburn). Brantley is still a stiff and the best thing that could have happened was him sitting out so Driskel and Brissett could get some playing experience on a big stage. Freshman playing against Alabama, LSU and Auburn even in a loss was invaluable. Muschamp and Weiss will get the recruits they want and the gators will be back if the whiners will cut them some slack. Once these kids realize there’s only so many spots at Alabama and LSU, Florida starts to look pretty good. Could be worse folks!!!! FSU was suppose to be loaded and a national contender and they lost to Wake Forest!!!!!

    • Gatorgrad79 says:

      9 – 3!? Are you on drugs?! 6 – 6 or 7 – 5 if we’re lucky……..

      • ncgator says:

        Richt will gag the Ga. game as he always does and get the axe the next week. S. Carolina is nothing without Lattimore and Garcia. FSU plays like they did at Wake we’re 9-3. Where’s the stretch?

    • Alex says:

      Don’t see anybody panicking. You should take it easy on exclamation points.

  14. El Meester says:

    From what I had been hearing about our recruiting board, I kind of figured a TE would be leaving, so I’m not really surprised about Christian. Clark..eh, not really broken up about him leaving. We are trying to install a pro-style offense, and Clark does not really fit that scheme, much like Dunkley.

    For me, I kind of like the attrition that is happening. It should open up space for the proper recruits to come to UF immediately.

  15. swiftt_tech69 says:

    Hate to see clarck leave I guess mushcamp got on his case to hard for muffing that punt. Gc only played beacase ac was hurt. Plus reed is only a soph. We have a top 5 te comin in? Bu where is o hines? This will take time guys. Anyone one remeber saban losing to l.a. monroe( correct me) if I’m wrong they wanted his head. Look at bama now.don’t forget we start 5 spohs and 2 true fresh on d! This just opens more spots for players who fit our
    system…go gators!

  16. aziatic41 says:

    Everyone relax please. Losing Clark and Christian does doesn’t affect us at all. Also, collegiate players transfer all the time. We are by far not the only program that has players who transfer because of playing time. Clark is not a pro-style wide receiver and Christian is a converted tight end who has lots of talent in front of him. I don’t blame these guys for transferring if playing time is the main reason. I’m sure these kids have aspirations of playing professionally and not getting playing time kills that dream.

    But the sad thing is this is the mentality of today’s athletes. When things go wrong they will run or quit in a heart beat. Blue collar players that stay at their selected school no matter how tough things get, are hard to find in today’s world. I’m not a big worrying type of guy, but I worry if either Jeff Driskel or Jacoby Brissett will transfer if they are not deemed the full-time starter in the years to come. So I think we really need to recruit another quarterback just in case.

    I really hope we get this UGA win this weekend. Winning cures everything!

  17. jay d says:

    Fu$k all those ego-maniac wannabe ballers…florida will be fine…this is a hard-work only zone…all others please shoot urselves in the face….k…..thanx

  18. Jesse says:

    Its going to take more than two years this time to get us up to the level we are used to. I haven’t felt bad about any player we have lost this year and they aren’t the only players in the country that are leaving mid-season (USC – Baxter). We have plenty of talent left and we will reload. My understanding on the recuiting cap is that if the recuits enroll early, they can be counted in the previous class’s number. That should give us some more room if we can get the kids we want. Please sign Diggs!

  19. Joe says:

    AS – Do you have any insight on TE Kent Taylor’s decision? He and Thompson would make a powerful duo.

    • I do have insight on it, yes. Orange and blue skies on Thursday.

      • Joe says:

        Wow, you’re the man AS. Thanks. I’m excited to see some pro-style TE’s at Florida. Probably the biggest and strongest TE’s since Troupe and Ingram. It will definitely take another season or two to fully form our pro-style attack but two top caliber run blocking TE’s are crucial for our transition and definitely welcomed. These guys are really similar to some of the University of Miami’s current NFL pro’s i.e. Shockey, Olsen , Graham. Hopefully they will outclass ‘em.

        It’s great to be a Florida Gator.