Dunlap’s father says son likely out vs. Alabama

Carlos Dunlap, Sr., the father of Florida Gators junior defensive end Carlos Dunlap who was arrested and charged with DUI Tuesday morning, told the Orlando Sentinel that his son will likely miss the upcoming Southeastern Conference Championship game against the Alabama Crimson Tide on Saturday.

Dunlap, Sr. informed the Sentinel that he had already spoken with head coach Urban Meyer about the incident. Meyer told him that he must speak with administrators before making a final decision, but likely would not be able to play Dunlap in the Gators’ biggest game of the season up to this point. An official statement is expected to be made after Tuesday’s practice at approximately 6 p.m.

“I got the sense that he won’t be able to play,” Dunlap, Sr. said. “I asked him if there’s anything he can do — it wouldn’t be right if I didn’t ask — and he said he doesn’t know what he can do. We’re supposed to meet tonight.” He then expanded on his son’s recent mistake. “You think you’re in control and the next thing you know you’re in trouble. I am dumbfounded right now. He’s always been so anti-drug, anti-drinking. But it’s not what you do, it’s how you respond to what you do.”

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FOUR BITS: Exper., TDs, Cody, Spikes & Stamper

1 » When comparing the No. 1 Florida Gators and No. 2 Alabama Crimson Tide, there are plenty of similarities between the two teams. One thing in Florida’s favor is their considerable edge over Alabama in championship game experience. Senior quarterback Tim Tebow and the seniors are 4-0 in National Championship and SEC Championship games. “I think our experience helps us a lot,” Tebow said. “A lot of players on our team have played in the big games, even the experience from last year’s game against Alabama and also against Oklahoma. Plus, our rivalry games are so big, to us they’re just like an SEC Championship game or a National Championship game. It helps us a lot. We’re ready for those pressure-packed moments.”

2 » The Gators and Crimson Tide both have strong-legged kickers, but both teams are seeking touchdowns – not field goals – when they play on Saturday in Atlanta, GA. “If you have to settle for field goals in a game like this, it’s going to be tough to win,” Tebow said. “You have to come up with big plays in the red zone. When you get down there, you have to put it in for six because that makes a difference in winning and losing. In those final drives last year, if we settled for field goals, who knows if we win that game?”

3 » Alabama defensive lineman Terrence Cody is literally the biggest issue Florida’s offense will have to deal with on Saturday. Described as “massive,” Cody has the ability to dominate a game at the line of scrimmage. Even so, the Gators did their best to contain him in 2008 and will take him to task again later this week. “He ain’t Superman,” junior right guard Mike Pouncey said. “He can be blocked. It just takes a lot of effort.”

4 » With junior defensive end Carlos Dunlap likely suspended due to his DUI arrest Tuesday, senior linebackers Brandon Spikes and Ryan Stamper – the Gators’ dynamic duo on defense – prove to be even more important to the unit’s success. “Their linebackers are both really, really good,” Crimson Tide head coach Nick Saban said.

Extra Bit » Four Florida volleyball players were named to 2009 All-Southeastern Conference teams on Monday. Sophomores outside hitter Kristy Jaeckel and right-side/setter Kelly Murphy were both selected to the first team while senior libero Elyse Cusack and sophomore outside hitter Colleen Ward earned second-team honors. Cusack was also named the SEC’s Defensive Player of the Week for the second consecutive week and league-leading 13th time in her career. She is the only player in SEC history to receive the honor four times in a single season and has done so in back-to-back years.

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Florida Gators basketball returns to Top 25 polls

Winning the 2009 Legends Classic over the weekend, which included a defeat over the (at the time) No. 2 Michigan State Spartans, Florida Gators basketball (6-0) returned to the Associated Press and USA Today/ESPN Coaches Top 25 polls on Monday for the first time since Jan. 19. The Gators are in the No. 13 and No. 17 spots, respectively.

In other news: ESPN College GameDay will be on-site at the 2009 SEC Championship game between the No. 1 Florida Gators and No. 2 Alabama Crimson Tide.

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Quotes & notes from UF on SEC Championship

No. 1 Florida Gators players and coaches have spoken with the media extensively over the last two days regarding the 2009 SEC Championship game on Saturday against the No. 2 Alabama Crimson Tide. You can find choice quotes and notes from the press conferences and interviews in no particular order after the break…
Continue Reading » Quotes & notes from UF on SEC Championship

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SIX BITS: SEC Championship week, injuries, Moore’s redshirt, volleyball, women’s b-ball

1 » While the No. 1 Florida Gators will technically be the visiting team on Saturday in the 2009 SEC Championship game at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta, GA, they have opened as a five-point betting favorite against the No. 2 Alabama Crimson Tide. During their current nation-leading, school-record 22-game winning streak, the Gators have defeated 21 opponents by a double digit margin.

2 » Proponents of a playoff system for the National Championship should be pleased that Saturday’s match-up of No. 1 vs. No. 2 is a de facto play-in for entry into the BCS National Championship game in Pasadena, CA. This is the second consecutive year that the top two seeds will face each other in the SEC Championship. In 2008, Alabama was No. 1 while Florida was No. 2. It would be a tough task to find two teams as similar as the Gators and Crimson Tide, even if one tried.

3 » Alabama head coach Nick Saban expects running back Mark Ingram to be “fine” for Saturday’s game against Florida. Ingram, considered by many to be the front-runner for the Heisman Trophy, left Friday’s game against the Auburn Tigers with a hip pointer and did not return. For the Gators, junior linebacker A.J. Jones (MCL) will miss the game while redshirt junior transfer running back Emmanuel Moody (ankle) and sophomore cornerback Janoris Jenkins (hip) are probable, according to statements from head coach Urban Meyer.

4 » Senior transfer wide receiver Carl Moore has been granted a medical redshirt and will return to the Gators for the 2010 season. A JUCO transfer in 2008, Moore struggled in his first season with Florida and had chronic back issues leading up to and during 2009. Moore’s size and trustworthy hands make him a valueable asset to the Gators’ receiving crops. Still waiting for an official word on his requested medical redshirt is junior cornerback Moses Jenkins, who suffered a serious concussion against the Kentucky Wildcats and has yet to return to action.

5 » The No. 15/15 Florida volleyball team (23-5, 16-4 SEC) received the No. 16 overall seed in the 2009 NCAA Tournament field of 64. The Gators will host the College of Charleston Cougars (18-12) on Thursday at 7:30 p.m. in the Stephen C. O’Connell Center. The winner will play the victor of the Florida International Golden Panthers vs. Miami Hurricanes match in second-round action on Friday at 7 p.m.

6 » Gators women’s basketball (3-3) hit a season-high 12 three-pointers on their way to a 71-60 victory over the Golden Panthers (2-4) on Sunday. Sophomore guard Jordan Jones scored a season-high 25-points while shooting .500 (5-of-10) from beyond the arc and 9-of-16 overall. Next up is the Florida A&M Rattlers as part of a doubleheader with men’s basketball beginning Tuesday at 4:30 p.m.

Extra Bit » ESPNU Road Trip: FSU-Florida Gameday

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Gator Bites for Sunday, November 29th

From time to time, OGGOA will come across too many news items we want to share with our readers. In those instances, we present a special post: Gator Bites. Enjoy.

- On NBC’s Football Night in America, Peter King said he spoke to 17 NFL general managers about Florida Gators quarterback Tim Tebow. Asking them where they projected him being drafted, King said the average came out to No. 33 overall. However, two coaches of winning teams told King that he would not get past their pick in the first round. No surprise there. Almost the entire group of commentators on The OT on FOX agreed that Florida will beat the Alabama Crimson Tide on Saturday. Some claimed the Gators were poised to win the National Championship while others said Tebow deserves the Heisman Trophy.

- Rolling up 545 yards of total offense on the Florida State Seminoles, the Gators unit looks the most comfortable it has the entire season. Consider the fact that it rolled up 584 yards against the Florida International Golden Panthers the week prior.

Be sure to check out the seven additional Gator Bites after the jump…
Continue Reading » Gator Bites for Sunday, November 29th

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FOUR BITS: Deal, FSU offense, Heisman, cake

1 » Some of you may have noticed the new advertisement in the right column for the OGGOA Gator SportShop. For opening a store with them, th affiliate has decided to provide us with two special promotions to share with OGGOA’s readers. Take advantage of them now before they expire on 11/30/09, especially if you wish to purchase a Tim Tebow jersey or some of the new Nike Pro Combat merchandise. Enjoy!
(1) Free Shipping Over $50 With Coupon Code: FreeShip
(2) 20% Off All Clearance Items (No Coupon).

2 » The Florida State Seminoles may have a 6-5 record, but Florida Gators junior cornerback Joe Haden sees a bunch of talented, athletic players that pose a threat to his team’s 21-game winning streak. “They look a lot better than 6-5,” Haden said. “They have athletes. A couple of plays here and there and they could have a lot better record than they have now. They have the same athletes [they used to have]. Their record isn’t as good, but they have the players. Head coach Urban Meyer agrees. “There is a lot of concern. [E.J. Manuel] is a really athletic guy, and they’re running a lot of triple option. What makes FSU dangerous is their athletes.”

3 » Senior quarterback Tim Tebow continues to lose ground in the Scripps Howard Heisman Trophy poll. Though he accounted for three touchdowns on Saturday, Tebow is in a tie for No. 2 on the list, earning two first-place votes. Ahead of Tebow is Alabama Crimson Tide running back Mark Ingram (5) while Texas Longhorns QB Colt McCoy (2) shares the second spot. Houston Cougars QB Case Keenum (1) and Stanford Cardinal RB Toby Gerhart (0) round out the top five. Voting tabulations are made on a 5-4-3-2-1 basis, with each voter ranking a top five.

4 » Unfortunate circumstances for me this weekend as I will be attending a wedding while the Florida vs. Florida State game is going on. Ironically, another Web site posted on Wednesday what appears to be the absolute greatest wedding cake of all time. Why? Well it is Gators-themed, of course. Check out one of the pictures below, then head over to the original site and find out more about it.

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Gator Bites for Sunday, November 22nd

From time to time, OGGOA will come across too many news items we want to share with our readers. In those instances, we present a special post: Gator Bites. Enjoy.

- Aside from losing 18 seniors to graduation, the Florida Gators could have a bunch of junior declare for the 2010 NFL Draft. “It’s in the back of your mind,” junior guard Mike Pouncey said. “We haven’t made any kind of decision yet. I have a great deal of respect for coach [Steve] Addazio. I’ll sit down and talk to him and my family and try to make the best decision for my future.”

- Junior linebacker Brandon Hicks is expected to replace redshirt junior LB A.J. Jones, who injured his MCL on Saturday and will be out for at least a few weeks.

- “They forgot to account for me,” senior quarterback Tim Tebow said about his career-long 55-yard touchdown run early in the first quarter on Sunday. “It’s one of the risks of playing man coverage with an athletic quarterback,” Gators head coach Urban Meyer added. “He’s going to get mad at me, but he’s not exactly the fastest kid.”

- Gainesville Sun columnist Pat Dooley believes Saturday’s game against the Florida International Golden Panthers was one “these guys needed.” The starters had fun, got to somewhat relax a week before the senior end their careers in The Swamp and even saw some of the future starters play well in their stead. “There are going to be a lot of talented dudes on the field next year,” Tebow said.

- In seven games against common opponents, Tebow and Alabama Crimson Tide running back Mark Ingram are only one rushing touchdown apart. Considering Tebow is a quarterback who is also his team’s leader and recorded additional scores through the air in those games, a strong case can be made that he is having a better season than his greatest Heisman Trophy competition.

- There is no reason to overlook the spectacular play of redshirt sophomore QB John Brantley on Saturday. While he still has a few games to wait until he takes over the reins of the Orange and Blue, his time will come. And when it does, if he looks as good as he did Saturday, the Gators have plenty to be excited about. “I’ve been waiting for three years now, but I’ve learned so much,” Brantley said after the game. “I’ve just taken it in these past few years and try to learn as much as I can. To sit behind one of the greatest players in college football – I think is a blessing to me.”

- OGGOA has reported extensively on the new Nike Pro Combat uniforms that will be worn next week for the Florida State Seminoles game (most recently here). When asked about wearing a non-traditional uniform for his home finale, Tebow had mixed emotions. “You love the jersey that you played in your last four years,” he said. “But also, you’re going to have a new jersey, and it will be something that’s cool and special to this one game.” Good perspective.

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