The 2010 version of the Florida Gators is in the midst of their third week fall practice and, while the activities were once again closed to both the media and public, some notable things did occur Tuesday. OGGOA has compiled some of the key details.
POUNCEY MOVING OVER?
Senior center Mike Pouncey told the media Tuesday that he may be forced to play right tackle to start the season while a number of players at that position get healthy. “I might have to play tackle in the first couple of games,” he said. “We’ll see. We still don’t know. It doesn’t matter to me. I feel like I’m a great player wherever I play, and I just want to win. I didn’t expect it. I thought I was going to play center, but I’ll do whatever it takes to help us win games. If it means me having to play tackle, that’s what it’s going to be. […] [Sam] Robey is ready [to play center]. He’s been sitting behind me and my brother. He’s just waiting for his opportunity. If he gets it, I think he’s going to take full advantage of it.”
Left tackles redshirt sophomore Matt Patchan and sophomore Xavier Nixon may both miss the opening game (or more) with injuries, forcing senior right tackle Marcus Gilbert over. Pouncey would fill in for him on the right, and Robey would play center.
NO. 2 SPOT
With redshirt junior quarterback John Brantley taking the reigns of the team this year, head coach Urban Meyer and QB coach Scot Loeffler are searching for a primary backup. Competing for the job are freshmen Trey Burton and Tyler Murphy, and it was long assumed that Burton was in the process of winning the job outright. However, whether due to Burton’s involvement in other roles on the team or not, Murphy is the one who has been getting the majority of the No. 2 snaps behind center.
Pouncey on the freshman class’ swagger: “Everybody needs to come in with that type of attitude, but at the end of the day the freshmen need to shut their mouths and come play. They haven’t done nothing on Saturday and most of the fans don’t even know who they are. Until they prove themselves, they need to sit back and let the older guys play. That whole recruiting class is cocky.”
Offensive coordinator Steve Addazio on Burton: “He’s the total ballplayer. He lines up. He’s taking snaps, direct runs, playing that hip/fullback/flexed-out guy [like Aaron Hernandez]. He’s powerful, he’s smart, he’s a really good athlete. He’s got great hands. That’s been really fun to watch over the last five or six days. He’s just like, ‘Hey, I want to do whatever it takes to help this team and get on that football field.’ He does everything. He’s a fun guy to be around. […] Trey Burton has had a great week. He makes plays in a lot of different positions. It’s really fun to watch him develop right now. That guy is playing all over the field making plays. He’s playing it all. He’s a playmaker. So, that’s really cool. He’s really done a great job. He’s very versatile. Hernandez was very versatile. Trey is maybe slightly different. He can do a lot of things. It’s pretty amazing, really.”
Wide receivers coach Zach Azzanni on freshman WR Chris Dunkley: “He’s getting there. We’re spending extra time out there on the practice field trying to get him right mentally. It’s just mental stuff. Physically, he can do it, but mentally … he’s catching up – probably right where I thought he was: goes left when he’s supposed to go right a couple times. That’s to be expected when you’re coming back. He’ll be fine. We’ll get him going.”
Azzanni on freshman WR Robert Clark: “[He's] had an unbelievable camp for us. When you talk about a gritty, little tough kid – he’s everything you want in a football player. Scrappy. He’s everything that you love to coach. He’s had a really good camp. We’re really pleasantly surprised with Robert Clark. […] He’s a hybrid guy, an inside slot guy, absolutely. He’s the same as [Chris] Rainey. He does the same things a Rainey does.”
Special thanks to The Gainesville Sun and Palm Beach Post for the above quotations.