SIX BITS: Miami, Cunningham, Starks, Dolphins

By Adam Silverstein
August 4, 2014

1 » ESPN announced on Monday that the Florida Gators will help kick off the network’s annual 24-hour college basketball marathon when they host the Miami Hurricanes on Monday, Nov. 17 at 7 p.m. live on ESPNU. Florida is one of four Southeastern Conference teams that will participate in the event, joining Auburn, Kentucky and South Carolina. The two featured contests for the marathon include a doubleheader on Nov. 18 featuring Duke vs. Michigan State at 7 p.m. and UK vs. Kansas at 9 p.m.

2 » For the third time in the last two offseasons, a former Gators football player has been sidelined for the entire season after suffering an injury during practice. The New York Jets announced on Saturday that linebacker Jermaine Cunningham suffered a torn Achilles and will miss the entire 2014 campaign. Cut in training camp last year by the New England Patriots, Cunningham was not picked up by the Jets until November. He played in two games for New York without registering a tackle and was considered on the roster bubble for 2014 entering team workouts.

3 » The Arizona Cardinals on Friday announced the signing of former Florida offensive tackle Max Starks, who barely played in the NFL in 2013 after spending less than a month on the roster of the St. Louis Rams. A 10-year veteran who has started 96 games in his career, Starks is well-known by head coach Bruce Arians, his former offensive coordinator with the Pittsburgh Steelers. Whether Starks ultimately makes the team out of training camp remains to be seen.

4 » With center Mike Pouncey already sidelined with a torn labrum in his hip, the other three former Gators in training camp with the Miami Dolphins are experiencing medical issues of their own. According to The Miami Herald, linebacker Jelani Jenkins (right knee) and kicker Caleb Sturgis (groin) are both dealing with ailments that have forced them to miss multiple practices. Neither injury is considered serious, however, and Sturgis is expected to kick in the Dolphins’ first preseason game on Friday. Running back Mike Gillislee, who was inactive most of the 2013 season, has been “coming on” in the competition at his position, according to the paper’s Barry Jackson. Added beat writer Armando Salguero: “[He] continues to impress me. He is showing instincts and tough running and a bit of quickness that clearly were not obvious last year.” It is sounding more and more like Miami will consider rolling with Gillislee as its third back in 2014, which would result in the team cutting second-round bust Daniel Thomas. “It’s only a limited opportunity, so every time I touch the ball, every time I’m in there, it doesn’t matter what play I’m in there. I give it all I got,” he said Monday.

5 » Taped in July when Florida head football coach Will Muschamp was participating in ESPN‘s Car Wash, the segment below features Muschamp and Marcus Spears looking over film. It is somewhat of a preview for a new SEC Network show called Film Room.

6 » On site for the closing ceremonies of the 2014 Commonwealth Games, Australian steeplechase runner Genevieve LaCaze decided to stage bomb a performance by singer Kylie Minogue. LaCaze, a former Gators student-athlete who famously won a fight with the Australian Olympic Committee to earn a spot in the 2012 London Olympics, was celebrating her 25th birthday and convinced to jump on stage by volunteers at the event. “I’m the one who worries about the consequences before taking the chance of doing something a little bit rebellious, but I thought, ‘It’s my 25th birthday,’” she told “I don’t know. I find 25 a number where you’re becoming an adult really, and I thought maybe one more childish act was in me.”


  1. SaraGator says:

    Love it when Coach Boom talks plays and schemes!

    • Ken (CA) says:

      Sounds good, if only he could translate it to the field and not lose the team in the process. Admitting that lost the team by Ga Southern last year is very telling. Let’s blame the OC that, not the HC philosophy. While Pease didn’t work out, he better let Roper do his job. There is no excuse for losing the team’s confidence that falls anywhere below the level of HC

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