SIX BITS: Dunlap’s future, QB offered, DT Floyd, Big Board, Smith and Holliday, Lewis

By Adam Silverstein
January 7, 2010

1 » Though juniors cornerback Joe Haden and tight end Aaron Hernandez have declared for the 2010 NFL Draft, the decision is not an easy one for defensive end Carlos Dunlap. Once considered a top-five talent, Dunlap’s arrest and subsequent suspension for DUI prior to the 2009 SEC Championship had him fall down draft boards. “The feedback that he’s gotten is that he will go late in the first round or early in the second round,” Dunlap’s father told Rivals on Tuesday. “Staying to get a degree isn’t going to be an issue because he’s on track to graduate in December. He’s close enough to getting his degree that he can do it anytime. So does he want to come back to finish up his education and maybe be the top overall draft choice next year or does he want to come out right now and start working on his NFL career?” Dunlap’s father will also consult former Florida Gators defensive coordinator Charlie Strong for advice. “We value Charlie’s opinion. We value Charlie’s evaluation. We value Charlie’s leadership. So if Charlie tells us this is how he thinks it should be, I trust he is going to tell us what is best for Carlos based on the evaluations and feedback he has received.”

2 » JC Shurburtt of ESPN is reporting that Gators quarterbacks coach Scot Loeffler has extended an offer to five-star 2011 QB recruit Jeff Driskel (Oviedo, FL). “I was real excited about the offer,” Driskel said. “I have been talking to Coach Loeffler just about once a week, and he told me that he was ready to offer me. When I got it, obviously I was real excited.” He has also received offers from Auburn, Virginia Tech, Ole Miss and Florida International. Driskel also told Shurburtt that while he does currently live in Florida, location won’t factor much in his final decision. “When I was younger, we moved around a lot because my dad was in the Navy,” he said.

Four more BITS including recruiting and NFL Draft news after the jump!

3 » Five-star defensive tackle recruit Sharrif Floyd (Philadelphia, PA) is planning to make his commitment on Saturday during the U.S. Army All-American Bowl. With his list narrowed to Florida, North Carolina, Ohio State and South Carolina, Floyd has told multiple reporters that he is ready to surprise everyone with his pick. “I do know my decision,” he told Scouts, Inc. “I think a lot of people are going to be shocked by my decision. I can’t wait. It will be a lot of weight lifted off of my shoulders.” It looks like the Gators and Tar Heels are his two finalists. “Florida overall, I genuinely care about Coach [Urban] Meyer and we talk on a daily basis,” Floyd said. “I just like Florida and what the program has to offer.” Florida has the unique opportunity to land as many as four five-star recruits on Saturday. OGGOA will have full coverage.

4 » In his latest Big Board, ESPN NFL Draft expert Mel Kiper, Jr. continues to list three Gators juniors. Haden has moved up one slot to No. 6, Dunlap jumped three spots to No. 14 and Hernandez moved up four to No. 15. Seniors QB Tim Tebow and linebacker Brandon Spikes are not in Kiper’s top 25.

5 » Florida graduate assistant Zach Smith was hired by new Marshall Thundering Herd head coach Doc Holliday as his wide receivers coach on Monday and has been going through a hectic transition ever since. “It’s great to have the opportunity to work with coach Holliday again,” Smith said. “He was pivotal in winning both national titles [with the Gators], both as a recruiter and a phenomenal teacher and coach.”

6 » Freshman golfer Amelia Lewis told the University of Florida over the holidays that she would not be returning to college in the new year. “I just knew it wasn’t for me,” she told GolfWeek. Instead, Lewis will practice and prepare for a shot at a selection to the 2010 U.S. Curtis Cup team, which will be announced in February. During her short career wearing Orange and Blue, Lewis played in two events, finishing tied for 11th at the Las Vegas Collegiate Showdown.


  1. ReptilesRule says:

    My predictions: Dunlap comes out and goes middle 1st round, Maurkice Pouncy comes out and goes 2nd round, Tim and Brandon go 2nd round with Tim being the wild card, Gators have a terrific recruiting Saturday minus Elam, who stays with FSU because of the competition at UF…

  2. Still think Tebow is a first-round pick. All he needs is one team to be infatuated with him to either draft him in their spot or trade up for him. I don’t see him getting past both the Jaguars and Patriots.

  3. Jag8r says:

    Who are the recruits announcing Saturday that we are in the running for? Could shape up to be a HUGE weekend for Gator nation!

  4. Drew 4 Orange and Blue says:

    Tebow is going to make this interesting…I think where he goes might depend largely on his willingness to play at the wildcat position while he is being groomed for QB…to me if he will do that he will go 1st…I also have a hard time seeing Dunlap falling that far…I think if he comes out once they see his measureables and then interview him and see his is a good kid who made a mistake that he will go 8-12 range…dominant rush ends are so valuable in the NFL

  5. Jag8r – Elam, Floyd, Powell (probably), Jeffcoat and a bunch of others. The first three I just listed are the most likely to declare for UF.

    If I am Dunlap, I stay and hope to work my way back up into the top five for 2011. I would never stay in school if I was a guaranteed top 15 pick, but even seeing “early second” in my evaluation would keep me in Gainesville.

  6. gator347 says:


    Agreed – Dunlap needs to stay but who knows? Based on his DUI, if I was his Dad I’d say wait but MONEY talks.

    I wounder if Shanahan will look at Tebow. He has studied Urban’s spread.

  7. O-town Gator says:

    Last night ESPNU’s recruiting insider predicted Jeffcoat to Texas, but we look good for Powell, Floyd and possibly Seantrel Henderson (unless he winds up at either Ohio State or Minnesota).

    I’m still taking a wait-and-see stance on Elam. I’d be happy as hell if he decided after all to come to UF, but with UGA in the picture I wouldn’t count my chickens before they were hatched on this kid.

  8. GTRBOY says:

    How long of a longshot is it for us to get Seantrel Henderson out of big ten country?

    P.S. I love the website!

  9. O-town & GTRBOY – Yeah, very highly doubt we get Jeffcoat or Hicks. Both probably going to Texas. Henderson I would not predict for the Gators either – though it is possible.

  10. fl_gtr says:

    Brown now thinking about leaving. have you heard anything today

  11. Aligator says:

    wouldn’t that be great is dunlap stayed and so did black and wright, we would be stoudt on defense for sure. remember this is dunlap’s first year as a full time stater and in 08 trattau started in that position across from cunningham.

    also, some reports are saying that one of the pouncey’s may come back and play center for us. if so, we would have five or six guys with good starting exp on the oline. I really believe we will do well next year.

  12. Mr2Bits says:

    Saturday is going to be an exciting day. I know Dunlap may stay but I’m a realist and don’t see him hanging around especially after the game he had at the Sugar Bowl.

    I think Kiper is an idiot to be honest. Spikes is one of the premier LB’s coming out and everyone knows what Tebow can do for a team and marketing. The Pats or Jags will snag him in the first without question. He is going to be the player everyone will think will go in the first hoping he doesn’t and have to pull the trigger early to not miss out on him. I actually wish the bucs would draft him so I could keep watching him locally but they are idiots and have their mouths on Freeman’s jock.

  13. fl_gtr – Are you talking about Mack Brown? The reports are not that he’s thinking about leaving, just that he is thinking over the situation. But new RB coach Stan Drayton visited with him yesterday or today and Brown called the meeting “good.”

  14. Daniel M. says:

    2010 starting Oline guess

    LT Xavier Nixon
    LG Carl Johnson
    C Sam Robey
    RG Mike Pouncey
    RT Marcus Gilbert
    TE ???

    Didn’t even mention Patchan, Alajajian, or James Wilson.

    Comments? Suggestions? Mockery?

  15. brlgator says:

    Two thoughts

    1 I wonder what type of impact addazio being named interim head coach has on henderson. Addazio was his main recruiter and his new prominent role may just convince him to come down here.

    2. Who is everyone rooting for tonight? Usually I am an SEC guy but bama beating us really really hurt. Plus I am dolphin fan so the thought of Osama Bin Saban/Osaban Bin Lyin winning another nat champ is enough to make my stomach hurt. Additionally, I like UT and root for them every year as one of my secondary teams.

  16. Daniel- I think UF goes with a three-man rotation at tackle with Nixon, Gilbert and Patchan. Patchan will get (and deserves) significant playing time. Also, I think if Pouncey returns he starts at center with Robey moving to guard.

    SEC – Alabama.

  17. Mr2Bits says:

    TE will be our Freshman Christin…Alajajian will also squeeze in there

  18. Daniel M. says:

    Sounds solid Adam.

    Robey sounded so promising at Center in the off-season and hasn’t Mike always played guard?

  19. Drew 4 Orange and Blue says:

    Kudos on the Saban thing…how can you pull for his team

  20. Aligator says:

    I agree with brlgator … i like colt mccoy and i do not like the arrogance that the other side has … saben plus 12 “mythical” championships is enough.

  21. SC Gator says:

    If Pouncey returns it’s going to be with some sort of understanding that he get the shot at center, on the grounds that center drafts higher. Robey would spend the year playing guard and probably swing over into center next year.

    I’m all for the SEC dominance to continue, so Roll Tide and all.

  22. Mr2Bits – Agreed, Gerald Christian will likely be a freshman starter.

    Daniel – Mike has always played guard. BUT if he returns to school, reports are that he would like to do center in order to up his draft stock. It is a specialized position.

    Drew – SEC trumps personal vendettas

  23. DukeOfDway says:

    Brigator: Ya I’m leaning toward Texas because of Dolphin fandom/Bama hate, but it wouldn’t kill me to see another SEC win.

    Adam: I love the site, the mobile version looks fantastic. OGGOA is definitely my new favorite Gators blog/Twitter. Keep up the good work.

  24. Duke- Glad you like it. I love the mobile version also, though I am looking to improve it if possible. How did you get an icon in your comment?

  25. DukeOfDway says:

    I got an icon because I have a WordPress account linked to that name and email. I think a lot of people use for blog avatars though

  26. Daniel M. says:

    As much of a jack ass as Saban was on the way out, I never developed the hatred for him that most of Florida has. He just seemed more like a guy that badly mishandled a situation.

    As a wounded Gator, I would find a wee bit of relief in knowing that the team that crushed us ended up winning the National Championship. Oklahoma fans will always say, “yeah, we faced Florida.” Same vein. It’s much better than getting crushed by some mediocre Pac-10 pushover if you know what I mean. It still hurts but Bama is damn good.

    All that said, I wouldn’t be bothered to see Texas open a can of whoop ass on Saban.

    I’m torn.

  27. Mr2Bits says:

    Looks like Bama left all their game in Atlanta as Texas came to play.

  28. Mr2Bits says:

    Edit : McCoy lost and Texas looks like shit. Texas is learning first hand that when they try and run up the score with their starter to try and win him a heisman and don’t get their backups playing time it can bite them in the ass real quick

  29. Drew 4 Orange and Blue says:

    I think Saban hit the nail on the head that Bama players thought the game was over at half…that being said it’s nice to see the SEC win 4 in a ROW!!!!! Is it too early to talk about who Bama is losing…is McClain leaving early? Are they losing much on the O-Line?

  30. Mr2Bits says:

    Drew : Much of their defense will be gone. I think they will be losing 2-3 offensive starters which isn’t much. Bama’s offense is not what won them the championship this year so their D will be a big blow.

  31. gator347 says:

    Does it bother anyone else that everyone is saying that Texas with Colt should have beat ‘Bama?
    It seemed clear to me that Sabin throttled WAY back & did what we did against Tennessee.
    It was VERY hard to pull for Bama!

  32. Atlanta says:

    Dulap winds up going due to the pending changes in the draft and the possible issues between all team owners and players that many are saying will end in a lock out after next year (that would not be a good year to get drafted). BUT I hope he stays……….

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