Florida QB Luke Del Rio out indefinitely, Gators down numerous starters

By Adam Silverstein
November 7, 2016
Florida QB Luke Del Rio out indefinitely, Gators down numerous starters
Football

Image Credit: AP

The Florida Gators will be the walking wounded when their old coach comes to town on Saturday in what will not only be Florida’s final home game of the season but also a must-win game for the Gators if they hope to repeat as SEC East champions.

Redshirt sophomore quarterback Luke Del Rio, who was nearly replaced in Saturday’s 31-10 loss to Arkansas, has been ruled out for the South Carolina game with a shoulder injury. Head coach Jim McElwain expects Del Rio to be out a while, noting he will undergo an MRI on Monday after being unable to even lift his duffle bag on Saturday night.

McElwain admitted that he should have replaced Del Rio at halftime of the game, though he did not have any idea how ad the injury was to the quarterback’s shoulder.

Graduate transfer Austin Appleby, who went 1-1 starting in Del Rio’s place after the latter suffered a knee injury against North Texas, will get the first opportunity at the starting job. McElwain cautioned that he will have an open competition in practice with true freshmen Feleipe Franks and Kyle Trask also getting an opportunity at the gig.

McElwain on Saturday also confirmed the season-ending broken arm suffered by redshirt junior linebacker Alex Anzalone. He said redshirt junior center Cam Dillard (knee) will miss the game with seniors LB Jarrad Davis (ankle) and wide receiver/kick returner Chris Thompson (undisclosed) “probably” out as well.

Sophomore defensive end CeCe Jefferson (foot) will be a game-time decision.

Should everyone miss the game, that means the Gators would be without four starters plus a special teams starter for a must-win home game against the Gamecocks. That’s not going to be good for business.

8 Comments

  1. SW FL Joe says:

    Luke Del Rio is the epitome of selfishness. He knew he was hurt during the second quarter and did nothing about it. In the ultimate team sport, he put his own ego above that of the Gators. When you know you can’t do your job at 100% and you don’t take yourself out or at least tell the coaches at let them decide, you are only thinking of yourself. Also what does that say about his relationship with the coaches when he feels he can’t even be honest with them and say “Coach, I don’t think I can go right now”.

    • Michael Jones says:

      Wow. . I can’t imagine a QB keeping himself in the game when he’s no longer able to throw the ball down the field. That explains the lame duck 2nd interception he threw down the middle of the field, as well as his unusual inaccuracy for most of the game.
      Have to go with SW Fla Joe on this one. WTH was he thinking? That he was being brave for the team? That “tough guy” nonsense? From a QB? Bad bad move.
      There’s this ancient football mentality that an injured first teamer is somehow better than a healthy second stringer. I’ve always thought that was pretty much hogwash. If that’s the case, then you really need to start recruiting better.

  2. TGIF says:

    Our Prayers have been answered, give the others a chance who can throw the ball and can run !

  3. James Westrick says:

    We have 2 freshman quarterbacks sitting on the bench and another 4 star quarterback coming in January. Why haven’t we tried at least one of the freshman already? Do you really think Del Rio is a long term (2 more year solution???). If we don’t use the freshman they are going to walk away as obvious they have no chance at UF just like Grier if McElwain is in love with Del Rio. Class MBA ’61

  4. John B says:

    He has been injured since his first game back. I don’t believe this report at all.

  5. James says:

    No Luke Del Rio. Oh my, dear me. Whatever shall we do. Take heart, our brilliant head coach will figure it out. On a positive note, B-ball tips off this week

  6. MAR says:

    I don’t like to see it happen because of injury, but the change needed to happen regardless. It needed to happen at halftime at Ark. I knew we were doomed when LDR took the field to start the second half.
    I think this will provide a spark. Appleby is a senior and this is his last chance to step it up. He will be trying to get the ball down the field. This could still be a good season. Hopefully the team rallies for these last games. Go Gators!

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