A Sun Blog

Robbies Playbook

Get knee-deep in The Swamp with our UF football guru

Gators have a chance

A month from today (Friday), we head to Hoover, Ala., for SEC Media Days, so it’s already time to start gearing up for football season. I’m sure that in Hoover the media will be predicting Tennessee to win the Eastern Division, and the vote for the Vols likely will be a landslide. Tennessee certainly looks like the best team in the division on paper, but games aren’t won on paper. Florida and Georgia also are good enough to win the… Read More »

How they’ll line up in August

This is the time of year when you see everyone’s way-too-early top 25 for the upcoming season. I’m not going to go there. But what I have done is come up with a way-too-early depth chart for the Florida Gators, who likely won’t put their own out until the week before the opener.   In my way-too-early depth chart, I’ve included the incoming freshmen who were not here in the spring with the 12 early enrollees and the two suspended… Read More »

DBU starting to roll

With Vernon Hargreaves III and Keanu Neal being taken in the first round of the NFL draft Thursday night, DBU is just getting started. There will be more nights like that in the future — maybe the near future, as in next year. It is rare to have two defensive backs from the same school selected in the first round. It has been done only once by another SEC school, so it’s something special. But the Gators have a chance… Read More »

Players on the rise

Spring football is primarily about teaching fundamentals and developing talent, and the Gators appeared to make progress in both areas, especially in terms of player development. Here are five players who appear to be on the rise heading into the summer: Duke Dawson, CB/S: This talented player from Cross City made a significant move this spring and likely will be the starting nickel defensive back. Being around all that hard-working talent in the UF secondary apparently has influenced him in… Read More »

Some spring observations

As the Gators head into an important offseason, here are some final thoughts on spring practice and the Orange & Blue Debut: Based on the spring game alone, you’d think the quarterback competition is not that close and, in fact, appears to be over. But that is not the case. Luke Del Rio certainly was the best quarterback on the field Friday night, but he had the benefit of playing with the No. 1 offense (against the No. 2 defense)… Read More »

Don’t count out Appleby

The consensus among fans, reporters, writers, bloggers and others seems to be that Oregon State transfer Luke Del Rio is a lock to become the Gators’ starting quarterback in the fall, if not sooner. But, trust me, that deal is far from done. I’ve been saying since even before the start of the spring that Purdue graduate transfer Austin Appleby is going to make a strong bid for the starting role and has a good chance to win it because… Read More »

Growth on the O-line

It has been a much more enjoyable — and a lot less physical — spring for Florida offensive line coach Mike Summers now that he’s got plenty of big, healthy linemen to work with. He had so few a year ago that the 59-year-old Summers often had to pretend he was a lineman and participate in drills so the offensive line could practice. “Feels really good because I don’t have to jump in there and be one of the guys… Read More »

Some early spring stuff

More than a year into the new system under a new coaching regime, the Gators seem much more comfortable this spring than a year ago. “More so even just the whole flow of practice, you know, and the terminology part,” UF coach Jim McElwain said. “And it felt like we were way ahead, obviously, than where we were. You could tell by the install. We were in three personnel groups. We weren’t handcuffed by formations, that type of thing, which… Read More »

Don’t be surprised if …

There are always a few spring surprises on the football field for the Gators, but here are a few things that will not be considered surprising — at least to me. So, don’t be surprised if: Austin Appleby emerges as the starting quarterback. Everyone’s been talking up Oregon State transfer Luke Del Rio since word started leaking out last summer that he was killing it in players’ only practices. But here’s something to consider: Del Rio has almost zero college… Read More »

Coach Mac a champion for kids

As we’ve seen in his short time at Florida, Jim McElwain is a high-energy guy who embraces change and has a way of putting his personal stamp on things, whether it’s upgrading facilities, creating more positions on his support staff or changing the date and the time of the spring game. Well, he’s done it again. The latest McElwain stamp has been placed on the annual Scramble for Kids golf tournament that benefits three area charities — the Boys and… Read More »