Gameday: Florida Gators vs. Eastern Michigan

Location: Ben Hill Griffin Stadium – Gainesville, Florida [Capacity: 88,548]
Weather: 84°F (feels like 92°F), scattered t-storms (chance of rain: 40 percent)
Time: 4:00 p.m. EDT

TV: SEC Network (Tom Hart, Matt Stinchcomb, Heather Mitts)

Streaming Video: SEC Network | Mobile Video: WatchESPN app

SiriusXM: 93/190 | Radio: Gator Radio Network [Affiliates]

Live Updates: @OnlyGators on Twitter

FLORIDA GATORS E. MICHIGAN EAGLES
Head Coach: Will Muschamp Head Coach: Chris Creighton
Record: 0-0 Record: 1-0
Conference: Southeastern Conference: Mid-American

Odds: Florida -40.5 | O/U 55.5

KEEP UP WITH THE GATORS

Busy during the week? Miss a feature, story or post on OnlyGators.com? No worries. Catch up on what you forgot to check out via the links below!

Notebook: Muschamp reinstates suspended players reinstated, more Florida starters named ahead of new opener | Notebook: Kurt Roper, Jeff Driskel believe in Demarcus Robinson | Notebook: Muschamp goes off on those criticizing his discipline |
Notebook: LB Michael Taylor, DE Dante Fowler ready to lead…and hit hard |
Interview: Heather Mitts returns to Gainesville

Continue Reading » Gameday: Florida Gators vs. Eastern Michigan

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TWO Video BITS: Erin Andrews, Coleman Hutzler

1 » Participating in a long-running segment on ABC’s Jimmy Kimmel Live, former Florida Gators dazzler Erin Andrews – now a sideline reporter for FOX Sports and a host on Dancing With the Stars – read a mean tweet about herself on the air. Andrews has been the subject of much harassment on Twitter throughout her career, so it is especially nice for her to be on this NFL-specific segment (though not as funny as when Gators head coach Will Muschamp read one about him last Saturday).

Continue Reading » TWO Video BITS: Erin Andrews, Coleman Hutzler

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9/1: Foley, Muschamp comment on Florida-Idaho, Gators suspensions, named starters

Florida Gators head coach Will Muschamp met with the media on Monday to open up game week ahead of his team’s new home opener against the Eastern Michigan Eagles at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium in Gainesville, Florida, on Saturday, Sept. 6 at 4 p.m.

He and athletic director Jeremy Foley spoke at length about Florida’s false-start against the Idaho Vandals, which was delayed and then suspended due to lightning, and the Gators’ focus with another week to go before stepping on the field.”

THE SUSPENDED PLAYERS: REINSTATED

Sophomore wide receiver Demarcus Robinson (university sanction) and defensive tackles senior Darious Cummings and redshirt freshman Jay-nard Bostwick (violations of team rules) have all be reinstated. Muschamp said Monday that all three players will be back in action for Florida next Saturday against Eastern Michigan.

“They will be back this week with us,” said Muschamp of his Cummings and Bostwick. “They have, not just as far as the suspension for a game, they’ve handled a lot of other things for me.”

In regards to Robinson, Muschamp said his university sanction has been “resolved” and his punishment was not a continuation of the suspension that cost him the final two games of 2013. “This was a totally separate issue,” he noted.

Continue Reading » 9/1: Foley, Muschamp comment on Florida-Idaho, Gators suspensions, named starters

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2014 Florida Gators Orange & Blue Debut Preview

OnlyGators.com will offer full coverage of the 2014 Orange & Blue Debut via an on-site live blog on Saturday, April 12 as fans are unable to watch the spring game live for free either on television or online.

A live blog link is now available, so be sure to check OnlyGators.com to bookmark the page and stay with us as we take a first look at Florida football ahead of the 2014 season.

Location: Ben Hill Griffin Stadium – Gainesville, FL [Capacity: 88,548]
Weather: Sunny, 80 degrees, winds east at 8 mph
Time: 1:30 p.m. (EDT)

TV (5:00 p.m. Tape Delay): Sun Sports (Larry Vettel, Nat Moore, Jessica Blaylock)
SiriusXM: None | Radio: Gator Radio Network [Affiliates]
Free Online Video: None | Mobile Video: None
Free Live Updates: OnlyGators.com and @OnlyGators on Twitter

Reference: Roster | Schedule

EXPANDED VIEWING INFORMATION

Television:
Florida’s 2014 spring game will not air live on television but rather on tape delay at 5 p.m. due to a conflict with the Tampa Bay Rays. OnlyGators.com contacted Sun Sports and the Gators but received conflicting information as to why the game was not available live elsewhere on television, even as a pay-per-view broadcast.

Saturday, April 12 at 5:00 p.m. | Sunday, April 13 at 10:00 a.m.
Tuesday, April 15 at 12:00 p.m. | Thursday, April 17 at 12:00 p.m.
Saturday, April 19 at 12:00 p.m. | Tuesday, April 22 at 4:30 p.m.

Online:
While the game is not being offered live on television, you can pay $3.99 to stream the Orange & Blue Debut live online as a pay-per-view via GatorVision.tv.

However, OnlyGators.com is running a free live blog during the Orange & Blue Debut, so you can also check here on Saturday for full coverage without paying a cent.

EVENT FORMAT

Unlike 2013, when Florida only had six healthy offensive linemen and head coach Will Muschamp felt the team did not have enough healthy players to play a true spring game, the Gators will be reverting back to that format with four 12-minute quarters and a running clock, which will only stop during the two-minute drill at the end of each half.

Though Florida, for marketing purposes, held a “selection show” picking the first 12 players of each team, Muschamp previously stated that the Gators will run “good-on-good” during the game, meaning the first-team offense will play against the first-team defense and the same for the second-team units.

Therefore, even though there are supposed to be two teams – one wearing orange, the other blue – going against each other, both defenses will wear orange and both offenses will wear blue. Good luck keeping score.

Injury report, player notes and much more…all available after the break!

Continue Reading » 2014 Florida Gators Orange & Blue Debut Preview

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Durkin: New Florida offense is improving defense

Florida Gators defensive coordinator D.J. Durkin met with the media on Thursday for the first time this offseason and had an opportunity to provide some insight now that the team is two-thirds of the way through spring practice.

OFFENSE HELPING DEFENSE

Florida’s offensive shakeup is certainly a welcome sight for fans, but it is also benefiting the Gators own defense as it is giving the team the opportunity to practice against a more explosive spread set as opposed to the pro-style unit they have been working with for the last three seasons.

“It’s been great for us that way. That’s been good; we’re seeing it every day. In the past it’s been you get to game week, alright, we’re kind of changing the way we practice. We’re talking about tempo. We’re doing different things. Where now it’s really kind of becoming the norm,” explained Durkin.

“Now it’s going to be the flipside. We’re going to have to formulate how we’re going to practice against some two-back teams and power running game because we’re still going to face that, too. You got that handful of games every year where you’re going to face that. It’s kind of flipped that way, but in terms of spread and all that, it’s been great. Our offense is doing a great job, and I feel like they’re preparing us for things we’re going to see.”

For their part, Florida’s offensive playmakers are enjoying themselves.

“I like it man. It’s a great offense. We get to play in more space. It’s fast, very explosive,” said sophomore running back Kelvin Taylor. Added sophomore wide receiver Chris Thompson: “I feel like is more my style because I’m able to use my speed and we’re spreading the ball around.”

Continue Reading » Durkin: New Florida offense is improving defense

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FOUR BITS: Foley, Roper, Tebow, ESPN

1 » In a question-and-answer session with the school’s website, Florida Gators athletic director Jeremy Foley noted Thursday that his team and the Georgia Bulldogs will both wear colored jerseys during the Florida-Georgia game. “It’s just something a little different,” Foley explained. “To be honest, a fan suggested it. He sent me a picture of what they used to do when Coach [Steve] Spurrier was playing. He had a blue jersey on and whoever was tackling him had a red jersey on. It’s a unique rivalry and just a little different something to do. There is no particular reason. Georgia agreed and we agreed. At the end of the day, you’ve still got to win the ballgame no matter what color jersey you have on. I think it’s just a little something that makes the game even more unique.” No specifics were given as to whether this is a one-off decision or has been instituted for the duration of the current contract between the opponents to play in Jacksonville, FL.

Foley also notes that there is a “sense of urgency” in remodeling the Stephen C. O’Connell Center and that a decision on upcoming Southeastern Conference football scheduling (whether to go to nine league games) will come in June, which you can read along with some other less-interesting topics by clicking here.

Continue Reading » FOUR BITS: Foley, Roper, Tebow, ESPN

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Gators release contracts for new 2014 coaches

In his fourth year at the helm of the Florida Gators, head coach Will Muschamp has a new offensive coordinator and two new position coaches ahead of the 2014 season.

According to information released by Florida on Wednesday, new offensive coordinator Kurt Roper signed a three-year deal worth $590,000 per season. He received a $100,000 signing bonus and can cash in a $100,000 longevity bonus if still employed by Jan. 31, 2016, maximizing his contract value to a total of $1.97 million.

It was also announced that special teams coordinator Coleman Hutzler signed on with a one-year contract paying him $230,000, and offensive line coach Mike Summers signed a two-year contract at a rate of $190,000 per season.

A look at the coaching staff’s 2014 salaries compared with their counterparts in 2013:

2014 Coach2014 Salary2013 Coach2013 Salary
Will Muschamp
Head Coach
$2.75M
(4 years)*
Will Muschamp
Head Coach
$2.75M
(5 years)
Kurt Roper
Offensive Coordinator / QB
$590K
(3 years)
Brent Pease
Offensive Coordinator / QB
$590K
(3 years)^
D.J. Durkin
Defensive Coordinator / ILB
$490K
(1 year)~
D.J. Durkin
Defensive Coordinator / ILB
$490K
(2 years)
Coleman Hutzler
Special Teams Coordinator / OLB
$290K
(1 year)
Jeff Choate
Special Teams Coordinator / OLB
$290K
(1 year)
Brad Lawing
Assistant Head Coach / DL
$390K
(2 years)`
Brad Lawing
Assistant Head Coach / DL
$390K
(3 years)
Brian White
Running Backs
$290K
(1 year)
Brian White
Running Backs
$290K
(1 year)
Mike Summers
Offensive Line
$190K
(2 years)
Tim Davis
Offensive Line
$300K
(1 year)
Joker Phillips
Wide Receivers / Recruiting
$265K
(1 year)+
Joker Phillips
Wide Receivers / Recruiting
$265K
(2 years)
Travaris Robinson
Defensive Backs
$290K
(1 year)
Travaris Robinson
Defensive Backs
$290K
(1 year)
Derek Lewis
Tight Ends
$215K
(1 year)
Derek Lewis
Tight Ends
$215K
(1 year)
Jeff DIllman
Strength & Conditioning
$215K
(1 year)
Jeff Dillman
Strength & Conditioning
$215K
(1 year)

* Muschamp in 2013 received a one-year contract extension through 2017.
^ Pease was fired following the second year of his three-year contract.
~ Durkin is on the second year of a two-year contract signed in 2013.
` Lawing is in the second year of a three-year contract signed in 2013.
+ Phillips is in the second year of a two-year contract signed in 2013.
– Florida signs most assistant coaches to one-year renewable contracts. Therefore, retained coaches are listed with their respective salaries from the 2013 season until the university releases new contract information in August.
– The Gators are spending $110,000 less in salary than the program did in 2013.

Universal contract notes and bonuses:
– All coaches receive a $10,000 bonus from Florida’s contract with Nike
– All coaches receive use of a car and other tangible incentives
– National Championship Game victory – 30 percent increase
– National Championship Game appearance – 25 percent increase
– Other championship-level bowl game appearance – 20 percent increase
– SEC Championship Game appearance – 10 percent increase
– Non-BCS bowl game – 10 percent increase
– Bowl game with less than $2 million payout – one month’s salary increase
– If team graduates at 85 percent – $4,000 for head coach, $1,500 for assistants

The Orlando Sentinel’s Edgar Thompson obtained the salary information referenced above from the school via an open records request.

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Will Muschamp, Florida assistants to make 12 stops on 2014 spring speaking tour

Florida Gators head coach Will Muschamp is set to make eight appearances at Florida-based Gator Clubs as part of the team’s annual Gator Gathering speaking schedule with his assistants participating in four more events.

Muschamp made 10 Gator Club appearances ahead of the 2013 season with four of his assistants also participating in events throughout the state. The three newest members of his coaching staff will hit the road this spring.

Joining him with speaking engagements are offensive coordinator Kurt Roper, offensive line coach Mike Summers (two) and special teams coordinator Coleman Hutzler. Their events are not scheduled as of press time.

The speaking tour is put on by the UF Alumni Association and Gator Boosters, Inc. in association with the University Athletic Association. Tickets are available to the public and sold to the respective events with proceeds usually going to support the club and fund scholarship opportunities for local area students.

Will Muschamp
» April 8 – Gainesville Quarterback Club (Gainesville,FL)
» April 17 – Gator Club of Jacksonville (Jacksonville, FL)
» May 1 – Broward County Gator Club (Fort Lauderdale, FL)
» May 5 – Tampa/Pinellas County Gator Clubs (Tampa, FL)
» May 7 – Polk County Gator Club (Lakeland, FL)
» May 13 – Central Florida Gator Club (Orlando, FL)
» May 20 – Titletown Gator Club (Gainesville, FL)
» May 22 – Fightin’ Gator Touchdown Club (Gainesville, FL)

Assistant coaches (dates to be announced)
» Roper – Marion County Gator Club (Ocala, FL)
» Summers – Capital Area Gator Club (Tallahassee, FL)
» Summers – Northwest Florida Gator Club (Pensacola, FL)
» Hutzler – Volusia County Gator Club (Daytona Beach, FL)

Head basketball coach Billy Donovan will also participate in yet-to-be-scheduled Gator Gatherings set to be held at the Southwest Florida Gator Club (Fort Myers, FL) and Atlanta Gator Club (Atlanta, GA).

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