LOOK: Florida Gators show off diagram for new ‘luxury’ dorms for football players

Florida Gators head football coach Jim McElwain is not taking his new role at one of the top programs in the country lightly. In fact, upon being hired by Florida, McElwain had a list of demands requests, which the Gators and athletic director Jeremy Foley have – to their credit – not wasted time implementing.

In addition to McElwain requesting that plans (and associated costs) for the yet-to-be-built indoor practice be significantly expanded, he also determined that the dorm rooms lived in by Florida football players – which have long been left without renovation or improvement – were simply not up to snuff.

Foley had casually mentioned that plans to renovate those dorms would commence at some point, and McElwain was proud to announce on Thursday that the Keys Residential Complex will be spruced up and ready to go as soon as the fall of 2015 with new “luxury” dorms for his athletes.

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4 BITS: Florida Gators to take on Oklahoma State in 2015 Orange Bowl Basketball Classic

1 » Florida Gators basketball was previously announced to be participating in the Orange Bowl Basketball Classic for the 15th time in the last 16 seasons, but its opponent for the 2015 event was not announced until earlier this week. Florida will take on the Oklahoma State Cowboys in the second game of the event, which will be led off with a showdown between Florida State and Florida Atlantic. UF is 2-0 all-time against OSU with the schools not meeting since 2000. The Gators are 14-2 all-time in the event, which will be held at the BB&T Center in Sunrise, Florida, on Dec. 19.

The rest of Florida’s announced 2015-16 nonconference slate includes a season opener against Navy in the 2015 Veterans Classic on Friday, Nov. 13 in Annapolis Maryland, and a spot in the 2015 Hall of Fame Tip-Off Tournament. The latter event includes two home games (North Carolina A&T – Nov. 16, Vermont – Nov. 25) and two neutral-site contests (Saint Joseph’s – Nov. 21, Old Dominion/Purdue – Nov. 22). UF will also play at Miami in the second game of a home-and-home series, and it will host West Virginia on Jan. 30, 2016 in the third annual SEC/Big 12 Challenge. Reports out of Fort Myers have the Gators taking on FGCU on Nov. 27 in the Stephen C. O’Connell Center in Gainesville, and early offseason rumors noted that Florid and Michigan State were discussing a home-and-home series that could begin next season.

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Reports: Florida basketball to host FGCU in ’15-16

Just weeks before the Florida Gators and Florida Gulf Coast Eagles squared off in the 2013 NCAA Tournament, few knew of the upstart program that dunked its way to the Sweet 16 only to go down 62-50 to the Gators.

FGCU, or “Dunk City” as they were affectionately known, is now a familiar name to college basketball fans, and its status has reportedly earned it a rematch with UF.

According to local media reports, the Gators will host the Eagles as part of their 2015-16 nonconference schedule, as first noted by Alligator Army. Florida will reportedly play FCU on Nov. 27 at the Stephen C. O’Connell Center in Gainesville.

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4 BITS: Florida Gators not pleased with O’Connell Center renovation cost projections, negotiating

1 » Florida Gators offensive tackle Roderick Johnson, whose career was deemed to be over after being diagnosed with cervical stenosis back in April, decided to get a second opinion on his condition in hopes of being able to build up his strength and return to the field. Unfortunately for Johnson, the second opinion he received was the same as the first – he needs to hang up his cleats. “[Spoke] with my family and trainers. [I] agree 100% with the professional doctors so Im making my decision on my own to walk away from this game,” he wrote Monday on his Twitter account. “I’m making this decision because I would hate for my mom to see me in a wheel chair. [Mom you’re] my blessing to start a new chapter.”

Johnson, who will remain at Florida on a medical hardship scholarship and is expected to remain with the Gators as a student coach, later added that he now feels like “all the pressure is off my shoulder[s].” Hopefully Johnson will be able to stay involved in the game off football and receive his degree, still allowing him to have a bright future despite this setback.

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Florida Gators football’s new indoor practice facility going up fast, on schedule

Once seen by athletic director Jeremy Foley as a luxury, the indoor practice facility now being built by the Florida Gators quickly became a need for the program, so much so that it scrapped its original plans for a smaller structure in order to build one large enough to placate new head football coach Jim McElwain.

Now, a little more than four months after construction began, the facility remains on pace to open in September ahead of the 2015 season, a construction project manager and Florida spokesman both confirmed to OnlyGators.com this week.

McElwain and the Gators appear pleased with the yet-to-be-completed structure, though there are some questions to be raised and answered about the indoor practice facility.

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Changes come to SEC football and basketball after 2015 spring meetings

From revenue distribution to rules changes that affect every member of the Southeastern Conference, the league announced a variety of important information at the conclusion of its 2015 spring meetings on Friday.

OnlyGators.com is here to break down some of the hot topics and wrap up the proceedings from the league’s four-day event in Destin, Florida.

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McElwain, White, Foley make few waves as Florida Gators reps at 2015 SEC spring meetings

A tumultuous offseason for Florida Gators athletic director Jeremy Foley, one in which he had to hire new head coaches in his two top revenue-producing sports of football and basketball, did not carry over to the Southeastern Conference spring meetings this week where Foley and his new coaches were some of the least news-making people in attendance at the annual event.

Though the meetings will go on for two more days with new Florida president Kent Fuchs set to be in attendance, OnlyGators.com has decided to wrap up the first two days of the proceedings and provide a detailed look at five of the biggest topics actually discussed by the Gators’ representatives in Destin, Florida.

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Florida, Michigan State talking basketball series

Florida Gators and Michigan State Spartans men’s basketball are discussing a home-and-home series for the 2015-16 and 2016-17 seasons, according to ESPN.com.

The Gators – which originally planned a barnstorming tour of the state of Florida while a $60 million renovation to their home arena, the Stephen C. O’Connell Center, forced them out of Gainesville, Florida, for the spring 2015 semester – are now looking to rearrange their schedule and add some home games as the renovation has been postponed one year.

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