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.