Football coaches often say they never want their players looking past the next snap.
However, with the first quarter of the first game of the 2010 season more than a month away, Florida head coach Urban Meyer probably won’t mind hearing that a few of his defensive players already are talking about the final minutes of the year’s biggest games.
“We’ve been putting in a lot of hard work all summer,” senior linebacker Lorenzo Edwards said after participating in the third annual Gator Football Charity Challenge Friday night at Florida Field in Ben Hill Griffin Stadium. “We believe we are going to start practice (Aug. 5) ready to go. We’ve worked on our fitness.
“We pride ourselves on being strong in the fourth quarter.”
According to senior defensive tackle Terron Sanders, that shouldn’t surprise anyone.
“We feel like we’re going to be strong throughout every game because of how much lifting and running we’ve done this summer,” said Sanders, who has a 2008 National Champions tattoo on his left shoulder. “The Gators always get up after people.”
GRAYS WIN: The Charity Challenge was won by the Gray team, captained by Edwards. The night’s events were the sled push, an obstacle course and the farmer’s hold (gripping 145-pound weights in each hand until you have to drop them). The night ended with team tug-of-war competition.
The six charities represented were the March of Dimes (Purple team), STOP! Children’s Cancer (Gray), the American Cancer Society (White), Shands Cancer Center (Blue), the American Heart Association (Red) and the Ronald McDonald House (Black).
Aside from Edwards, the captains were defensive end Duke Lemmens (Purple), defensive tackle Brandon Antwine (White), safety Ahmad Black (Blue), Terron Sanders (Red) and linebacker A.J. Jones (Black).
Perhaps the most impressive individual feat of the night was offensive guard Carl Johnson (6-5, 355) doing the farmer’s hold for 2:01.
SEEN AND HEARD: Redshirt sophomore left tackle Matt Patchan wore a knee brace but looked to be in great shape with 292 pounds sculpted on his 6-6 frame. … Pahokee High grads Janoris Jenkins and Chris Dunkley crossed the finish line together in an obstacle course race. … Scary thought for Gator opponents: NCAA 100-meter champion Jeff Demps slipped in his obstacle course race and blamed it on “moving too fast.” Demps on the summer workouts: “It was a great summer. We really had a chip on our shoulders.” … Incoming freshman Robert Clark and junior Chris Rainey also ran neck-and-neck in the obstacle course. … Strength and conditioning coach Mickey Marotti said that freshmen Sharrif Floyd, Ronald Powell, Dominique Easley and Chaz Green “have prepared themselves for the season.”
Derek Tyson and Buddy Martin contributed to this report.