Georgia hires Florida’s McGarity as next AD

A source inside the University of Florida‘s University Athletic Association has confirmed to OGGOA that Florida Gators executive senior associate director of athletics Greg McGarity has been tabbed as the Georgia Bulldogs’ next athletic director, is on the way to sign a contract and will be officially announced as such Friday.

McGarity, who had essentially been Gators athletic director Jeremy Foley’s right-hand man during his tenure at Florida, was hired in 1992 after graduating from Georgia. He was up for the Bulldogs’ AD job in 2003 and was widely believed to be the school’s top candidate to replace Damon Evans since July.

“I have been very fortunate to work alongside the very best in collegiate athletics at two outstanding institutions, the University of Georgia and the University of Florida, over the last three decades,” McGarity wrote in an application letter to Georgia’s associate vice president for human resources. “I know what it takes to lead and direct an athletic program at the highest level, and am ready to lead the University of Georgia Athletic Association into the future. I look forward to having the opportunity to compete for this position.”

He was such a popular candidate that U.S. Representative Jack Kingston (R-GA) went out of his way to write the school’s president to “enthusiastically recommend” McGarity. “He is ready to get back to his hometown and to serve his alma mater in this distinguished position,” Kingston wrote.

OGGOA wishes to extend our sincere congratulations to Mr. McGarity.

FOUR BITS: Tebow, hyperbaric, Pouncey, luck

1 » Considering how dominant former Florida Gators quarterback Tim Tebow has been in his career, many believe he should be the opening day starter for the Denver Broncos, too. While that notion has been poopooed by most everyone, The Denver Post’s Woody Paige makes a case for why that is exactly what should happen.

Tebow is a winner. He won 85 percent of the games he started at Florida, 82 percent of the games he started at quarterback in high school and college and 84 percent of the games he participated in from his freshman year in high school (as a tight end) to his senior year in college. His teams have won 13 games four times, 12 once, 11 once and nine once. He was on two state prep champions and two BCS champions in eight seasons. He played three quarters of a game on a broken leg. […]

With the uncertainty of the offensive line, [Kyle] Orton can’t scramble out of trouble. Tebow has his entire career. Tebow can throw the short routes as well as Orton, and certainly can throw more accurately on the run. The Broncos utilize a plethora of plays based on Florida’s spread offense, and Tebow already has proven to the coach’s satisfaction that he can read defenses and check-down receivers. […]

As the starter, Tebow would give the franchise hope, national relevance and excitement unlike anything witnessed in Broncos Country since briefly in 2005 and consistently from the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s. Tebow would give them and himself another winning season.

2 » In other Tebow news…it was revealed today that he has been using a hyperbaric oxygen chamber. TMZ reports that Tebow has actually been using the chamber for approximately six months and had one that was originally rented at his home in Florida sent to Denver before training camp to help him adjust to the high altitude.

Two more BITS on Maurkice Pouncey and the Florida Gators basketball team being a victim of circumstance…after the jump!
Continue Reading » FOUR BITS: Tebow, hyperbaric, Pouncey, luck

SIX BITS: Stripes, Black, Sanders, Pats, Eagles

1 » During a post-practice media availability Thursday, defensive line coach Dan McCarney said that Florida Gators freshmen wide receiver Robert Clark (first) and linebackers Michael Taylor and Neiron Ball were the first three youngsters to have their black helmet stripes removed. This is a tradition each fall.

2 » Ever since he decided to stay for his senior season, safety Ahmad Black has been talking about becoming a better leader for his teammates. Black expanded on that sentiment during Florida Media Day on Tuesday, explaining how things have changed during his college career. “As a freshman, I thought it was going to be handed to me and it wasn’t,” he said. “I just had to learn to go hard and show that I really belong here. […] I am trying to step up. I have to. I am one of the few seniors that we have on defense and one of the guys that has been there for a while. It is my job to help these young guys and help them do what they are supposed to do.” Black also talked about asking now-New England Patriots linebacker Brandon Spikes for advice. “Me and Spikes would be sitting down playing a video game, and I would ask him, ‘What do I have to do to get the guys to respect me? What do I have to do to get the guys to listen to me? Just him having a conversation with me helped me out.”

3 » Also of note post-practice was senior defensive tackle Terron Sanders’ admission that he was contacted either by an agent or a runner for an agent at the tail end of last season via multiple text messages to his cell phone. Sanders explained that he and the team “nipped that in the bud,” according to multiple reporters.

Three more BITS including Madden NFL 11 rankings and updates on Gators on the New England Patriots and Philadelphia Eagles…after the break!
Continue Reading » SIX BITS: Stripes, Black, Sanders, Pats, Eagles

FOUR BITS: Scouts, Lawrence, Johnson, Tebow

1 » When Alabama Crimson Tide head coach Nick Saban decided to close off his team’s practices to NFL scouts, there was some outrage that he may have gone too far. The Tuscaloosa News qualified the action by stating that Florida Gators head coach Urban Meyer had mandated the same thing. The only problem? He didn’t. Florida associate athletics director for communications Steve McClain pointed out Wednesday that the Gators have not changed their policy and scouts will still be allowed to attend during designated periods (usually during the regular season and select two-a-days). However, as noted before, Meyer has indeed closed practice to the media and fans in an effort to keep out questionable characters or “scumbags” as he so eloquently put it.

2 » On Aug. 5, Meyer announced that redshirt sophomore wide receiver T.J. Lawrence had requested and received a release from his University of Florida scholarship. Wednesday, Lawrence told The Lakeland Ledger that he has decided to transfer to the Florida A&M Rattlers. “It’s a big shocker because a lot of people wouldn’t expect Florida A&M University, but I’m going there to be a two-sport athlete,” Lawrence said. His main motivation for leaving UF was a lack of playing time.

3 » Interesting video from The Gainesville Sun of redshirt senior guard Carl Johnson interviewing freshman running back Mack Brown at Florida Media Day.

4 » Focus on the Family, the anti-abortion group that purchased a Super Bowl ad featuring former Gators quarterback Tim Tebow and his mother Pam Tebow, has decided to purchase statewide television advertisements during every Denver Broncos game for the upcoming season. Though the new ads will not feature or mention Tebow, the fact that the company is based in Colorado and already has the recognition of having previously worked with Tebow certainly served as a motivating factor in this decision.

Florida picks up commit No. 13 in OL Hounshell is reporting that three-star offensive lineman Chase Hounshell (Kirtland, OH) has given a verbal commitment to the Florida Gators.

Hounshell, who did not pick up a Florida offer until the beginning of August, had long been rumored to be heading to Boston College due to a budding relationship with the school’s coaching staff.

A standout who can play both sides of the ball, he committed to offensive coordinator and offensive line coach Steve Addazio on Wednesday.

At 6’6″ and over 260 lbs., Hounshell is the Gators’ 13th commitment for 2011 but only the team’s third offensive lineman. Florida is expected to lose four starters to graduation this season.

OGGOA will update this story as more information is made available.

Photo Credit: Michigan Live

Seven Florida Gators on preseason watch lists

With just over three weeks to go until the 2010-11 season commences, seven Florida Gators players have been honored with nominations to preseason award watch lists.

Maxwell Award (Outstanding collegiate football player)
Redshirt junior quarterback John Brantley
Junior running back Jeff Demps
» Previous winner(s): Danny Wuerffel (1996), Tim Tebow (2007, 2008)

Chuck Bednarik Award (Outstanding collegiate defender)
Senior safety Ahmad Black
» Previous winner(s): None

Rimington Trophy (Outstanding offensive center)
Senior center Mike Pouncey
» Previous winner(s): Maurkice Pouncey (2009)

Jim Thorpe Award (Outstanding defensive back)
Junior cornerback Janoris Jenkins
Junior safety Will Hill
» Previous winner(s): Lawrence Wright (1996)

Ray Guy Award (Outstanding collegiate punter)
Must display team leadership, self-discipline and positive impact on team’s success
Senior punter Chas Henry
» Previous winner(s): None

Broncos plan to make Tebow an active rookie

Now that former Florida Gators quarterback Tim Tebow has apparently received his initiation into the Denver Broncos organization and is steadily gaining the trust, acceptance and respect of his veteran teammates, attention turns to what he will – and will not – be permitted to do on the field in 2010.

ESPN‘s Chris Mortensen visited Broncos training camp recently and had the opportunity to speak with Tebow and some of his teammates about his NFL progression:

Tackling the issue of the “Tebow factor,” ESPN’s Bill Williamson discussed Wednesday how he is being folded into Denver’s offense this season:

The question is how his work in camp will affect the team on the field. The former Florida star quarterback has operated in short-yardage situations and he will likely be used in the Wildcat formation and in the red zone. That likely means Denver will keep quarterbacks Kyle Orton, Brady Quinn and Tebow on the 45-man roster on game days. In June, [head coach Josh] McDaniels said he was leaning away from that.

But it is clear that Tebow is being groomed to be active as a rookie. Unless Tebow completely leapfrogs Quinn in training camp and in the preseason, Denver could be using three quarterbacks on game days, which will take away from another position.

Another option for the Broncos, which Williamson failed to mention, is that McDaniels could simply assign Tebow the No. 2 quarterback role and make Quinn the emergency signal caller on game days. Should Orton be injured during the game and McDaniels choose to replace him with his true No. 2 in Quinn, Tebow simply would not be able to re-enter the game. The Miami Dolphins used a similar tactic last season with Chad Henne as the starter, Pat White as the game day No. 2 and Tyler Thigpen as the emergency quarterback.

SIX BITS: Brown, Harvin, Sheppard, soccer

1 » After two years of sitting and waiting while his back healed and pain subsided – “I’ve had a million procedures done, but we’ve got it taken care of…” – Florida Gators redshirt sophomore cornerback Jeremy Brown is ready to claim the spot across the field from junior CB Janoris Jenkins. And while he is feeling better than ever, Brown still remains cautious. “I’d be lying if I said mentally I’m just ready,” Brown told the Miami Herald. “There are certain things I second-guess, like should I really just … throw myself in there? In the back of my head I’m just thinking, ‘Man, this might be my back again.’ […] I’ve been away from the game for so long, I just want to play and help out. I spent two years not playing at all, not even practicing. The opportunity to go out there and contribute just brightens my day.”

Five more BITS on Percy Harvin, Lito Sheppard, Gators soccer, baseball commitments and Ean McQuay…after the break!
Continue Reading » SIX BITS: Brown, Harvin, Sheppard, soccer

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