TWO BITS: Noah to France, Jenkins moving on

1 » Chicago Bulls center Joakim Noah has decided to play for Team France in the FIBA European Championships in Lithuania, reported on Monday. Noah, who has dual citizenship due to his father being French, will participate in the event from Aug. 31 to as late as Sept. 18. With the NBA lockout in effect, Noah’s is certainly a candidate to play overseas until the 2011 season begins.

2 » Asked why he chose not to enter the NFL Supplemental Draft rather than play his final collegiate season, former Florida Gators cornerback Janoris Jenkins told The Florence Times-Daily that striking it rich is not his main concern right now. “It’s not all about the money,” he said. “I went three years without money at the University of Florida, so why can’t I do it another year. I’m not in a rush to get the money. I just wanted to come back and rebuild my image.” Attending North Alabama for a year will also likely provide Jenkins with a larger payday when he eventually gets selected in the 2012 NFL Draft, even if there is a rookie wage scale.

He also said that he realizes he was in the wrong and does not harbor any hard feelings for his head coach of just a few months, Will Muschamp. “Everybody makes mistakes; at the end of the day it’s how you rebuild off that mistake,” Jenkins told the paper. “I made a mistake and got kicked out at Florida, but that’s all behind me. There is no issue between me and Coach Muschamp. I texted him like two weeks ago and asked how he was doing and he texted me back. He did what he had to do and I’m not mad at him. I respect him as a man and as a coach.”

Extra BIT » Gators sophomore safety Matt Elam was named to the watch list for the 2011 Jim Thorpe Award on Monday. Handed out to the nation’s best defensive back, the Thorpe Award’s preseason watch list features 37 players, 10 of whom represent the SEC. Former Florida safety Lawrence Wright won the award in 1996.

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

FOUR BITS: Larson, Pryor, Leak, Demps, lax

1 » Florida Gators redshirt freshman forward Cody Larson has officially entered a not guilty plea on reduced charges of misdemeanor criminal trespassing. The Gainesville Sun reports that junior F Erik Murphy, the other player cited in the incident, has yet to enter a plea. Both men, along with student manager Josh Adel were arrested on felony burglary charges in April after they were caught allegedly forcing their way into a vehicle. Charges against Adel (for accessory to burglary) were thrown out; those for Larson and Murphy were reduced to misdemeanors.

2 » With former Ohio State quarterback Terrelle Pryor leaving his school in the dust, his next career move becomes just as (if not more) interesting as that of former Florida cornerback Janoris Jenkins. Pryor has similar options to Jenkins but has seemingly decided to leave college altogether. Though he could enter the 2011 NFL Supplemental Draft in July, it is looking more and more like he will play professionally in another league in 2011 with the CFL (Canadian Football League) and UFL (United Football League) leading the charge for his services. The Saskatchewan Roughriders of the CFL, according to the Associated Press, own Pryor’s negotiation rights within the league and could bring him aboard if he chooses to enter their league. Theoretically, that could spell doom for former Gators QB Chris Leak, who signed with the team as a free agent on May 5 and is fighting for the No. 2 job on the team. UPDATE: Pryor’s attorney said Thursday that he will not entertain offers from the CFL.

3 » Florida senior running back Jeff Demps, widely considered the fastest man in college football and one of the fastest overall in the entire country, failed to qualify for the finals of the 100-meter dash at the 2011 NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships on Wednesday. Demps turned in a 14th place performance of 10.40 seconds. He won the title last year with a time of 9.96 seconds.

4 » After another stellar season in which they were continuously ranked in the top five teams in the country, beat what ended up becoming the 2011 NCAA Champions and had a chance to qualify for the national championship game, Gators lacrosse was awarded the No. 5 ranking in the final standings released by the Intercollegiate Women’s Lacrosse Coaches Association. No. 5 is the highest a second-year program has ever been slotted to end the season, just another in a long list of accomplishments for the young Florida team and head coach Amanda O’Leary.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

TWO BITS: Jenkins fined, Tebow interviewed

1 » Former Florida Gators cornerback Janoris Jenkins was adjudicated and fined $421 (so close to being ironic) for his plea of no contest to misdemeanor marijuana possession. The charge, which got Jenkins kicked out of the Florida football program, was his second in less than 90 days. He is believed to be leaning toward transferring to North Alabama (Division II) to play in 2011 before declaring for the 2012 NFL Draft, but he could enter the 2011 NFL Supplemental Draft if one ends up being held in July.

2 » Out promoting his new memoir Through My Eyes, which OGGOA is currently in the process of reading for a review, Denver Broncos quarterback Tim Tebow has already made a pair of television appearances. He was on FOX News‘ The Shawn Hannity Show on Tuesday and appeared on The 700 Club last week (in an episode that was replayed Tuesday evening). Check out the videos below to watch Tebow’s interviews in full.

Tags: , , , , , ,

TWO BITS: Jenkins leaning toward transferring

1 » Former Florida Gators cornerback Janoris Jenkins, whose career hangs in limbo as he decides whether to try his hand at the NFL via the Supplemental Draft, another professional league or another college, is leaning toward the latter choice according to Len Pasquarelli of CBS Sports. Two sources told Pasquarelli that Jenkins will likely transfer to a non-Division I school in order to paint himself in a better light before the 2012 NFL Draft rolls around. “It’s about 50-50 right now that he tries to find a [college] to play and convince scouts that he’s really serious about an NFL career,” one of Pasquarelli’s sources told him.

2 » With offers from a number of other top-tier institutions, one of the best women’s basketball recruits in the state of Kentucky decided to commit to Florida on Monday. Sydney Moss, the daughter of NFL wide receiver Randy Moss, will sign with the Gators in November. She chose Florida over Kentucky, Kansas, Louisville, West Virginia, Dayton, Xavier and UCLA and averaged 22.6 points and 10.8 rebounds per game as a junior in high school.

Tags: , , , , , ,

Jenkins: “I was dismissed” from the Gators

When Florida Gators head coach Will Muschamp announced Tuesday that the team decided to part ways with senior cornerback Janoris Jenkins after his second marijuana possession arrest in less than 90 days, it was widely believed that Jenkins had a choice to remain on the team if he followed certain conditions but declined and instead decided to peruse a future elsewhere.

Jenkins spoke with the Orlando Sentinel on Wednesday and denied that he had any opportunity to stay at Florida for his final season.

“The only thing [Muschamp] said was I was dismissed as soon as I walked in the room,” he told the Sentinel’s Rachel George. “He washed his hands of me. […] They know he didn’t give me no option to make. […] There was nothing else I could have done or said.”

Jenkins also told the Sentinel that he has yet to make his mind up about his future. His options include playing for a junior college or Division II football program, redshirting for a year and trying to get a scholarship at a Division I school in 2012 or entering the 2011 NFL Supplemental Draft in July (should one occur).

Tags: , , ,

TWO BITS: Pounceys together? Jenkins to NFL?

1 » Though Florida Gators center Mike Pouncey continues to believe he will be selected higher in the 2011 NFL Draft than his brother was one year earlier, another opportunity (once believed to be likely before being dismissed as the opposite) has arisen. According to the NFL Network’s Jason La Canfora, the Pittsburgh Steelers (who drafted Pro Bowl center Maurkice Pouncey just last season) “will exhaust all realistic possible scenarios to trade up” for Pouncey. “Steelers coach Mike Tomlin has given an edict to his personnel department to explore all realistic trade options for Pouncey,” La Canfora writes, so the team is “prepared to acquire him should he ‘start to slip.’” Pittsburgh (with the No. 31 overall pick) would probably have to give up a good amount to trade up to where Pouncey will likely be drafted (No. 15-19).

2 » Dismissed from the Florida football team on Tuesday, Gators senior cornerback Janoris Jenkins has already begun pursuing another opportunity, according to Sports Illustrated’s NFL Draft analyst Tony Pauline. Rather than redshirt the 2011 season to potentially play for another top school next year or transfer to a junior college or lower division program this season, Jenkins is currently “looking for an agent” for the 2011 NFL Supplemental Draft set for July. Players normally enter the Supplemental Draft due to athletic, disciplinary or eligibility reasons. Pauline writes that “calls have already been made[to agents] on [his] behalf.” Though Jenkins now has character concerns, he will undoubtedly find a NFL home before all is said and done.

Tags: , , , , , , , ,