In preparation for Saturday’s contest against Tennessee, the Florida Gators have been playing the Volunteers’ fight song “Rocky Top” every day in practice to prepare for what they’ll be hearing on the road.
While head coach Will Muschamp said he’ll be humming the song walking in to Neyland Stadium, he’s hoping Tennessee won’t be playing the song much.
The Gators were said to have had physical practices last week and look to continue the same this week in preparation for their SEC East rival. While Florida was off, Tennessee suffered a three-point loss at Georgia Saturday. The Gators are second in the division and control their destiny over these three weeks with games against Tennessee and Missouri.
Here are more notes from Monday’s press conference:
“Injury report, CJ Worton will be out. Leon Orr will be out. Hope to get him back next week. Mike Taylor with a knee and Brandon Powell with a hamstring are questionable to doubtful this week. And expect D.J. Humphries to play. He’ll practice today. He got some good work in last week.”
On Trenton Brown’s ankle injury:
“Yeah, Trenton’s fine. He’s still a little hobbled by the ankle, but I think he’s going to be fine. He practiced last week, about half the practice. The other half he was in the pit working out. He’s really coming along and playing well for us. Certainly losing him the other day hurt a little bit as far as some of the movement we got in the run game. He’s done a nice job with protection.”
The offensive line with the addition of Humphries:
“We’ve talked about that, as a matter of fact yesterday and this morning. Rod has played well. Chaz has played well. They all will play. But if D.J. is ready to go, we’ll put him at the left and then we’ll figure out between Chaz and Rod. Obviously, Chaz will be a guy that would probably start if we had the game today, but we want to see how the week goes. We want to see how D.J. progresses.”
Change in using kickers:
“Well, Austin would be from the 26 probably to the 32, 33, depending on weather conditions. And Frankie from 25 in, from the yard-line standpoint from where we measure. Again, the order of that has to do with who’s kicked well throughout the week. Those guys have really been very close in their competition in what they’ve done. So, there’s nothing that wouldn’t say Austin could kick all the time in all situations.”
The re-emergence of Kyle Christy:
“When he’s able to flip the field the way he can, he certainly is a huge weapon for us. I think more than anything [it's] confidence. I think the issue is his confidence got shook a little bit last year. I think (Special teams coordinator) Coleman Hutzler has done a really good job fundamentally with him as far as getting back to the basics as opposed to trying to tweak and change his swing every time something didn’t go right. You can’t, you just got to get back to the basics and fundamentals when things aren’t going well.
Adjustments in the secondary:
“We’re still working through that right now. Brian’s repping some in the nickel. Duke Dawson’s repping some at the safety position. You know, between Jalen and Quincy at corner, trying to find the right combination there and continuing to rep Marcus in the nickel and at safety as well. Keanu Neal has done a nice job with some things and Jabari. We’re just continuing to find the right combination. We’ve got a whole week of practice this week, so we’ll make those decisions probably the latter part of the week, probably Friday or Saturday.”
On Tennessee running back Jalen Hurd:
“Tough, physical. You know north and south runner, doesn’t try and do a lot east-west running. Gets the ball north and south. Really good football player, but that’s what you saw in high school. I mean he was a tough, downhill runner. Pushes the pile in the run game. Does a nice job.”
What Muschamp did during the off weekend:
“No, I went recruiting Friday and then just kind of watched ball Saturday and then we worked Sunday. So we just had one day off there. It was nice.”
Having the support of the administration:
“Well certainly, it’s positive. I appreciate that. I’m really concerned with what happens in the building. Those are the things that concern me the most, as our football team and what we need to do to continue to approve and get better. I certainly appreciate it.”