Florida didn’t get to scrimmage as much as it wanted to on Saturday, as severe storms ripped through the Gainesville area.
Coach Will Muschamp said the team only practiced for 30-35 snaps, leaving him with few thoughts on how the last major scrimmage before Saturday’s Orange & Blue Debut went.
“Not a whole lot to say, we got cut short Saturday because of some lightning that was pretty prolonged throughout the afternoon,” Muschamp said. “Did some 7-on-7, some 1-on-1 and some individual and that was about it as far as the scrimmage.”
What he was able to see was fairly encouraging, at least on offense.
The first drive resulted in a lengthy march down the field for the first-team offense, keyed mostly by the running game.
Muschamp said wide receiver Andre Debose got loose deep down the sideline on the drive and just missed the catch due to outstanding coverage by cornerback Louchiez Purifoy.
“I wish we would have started a little better defensively, but we got cut short after that,” he said.
Other highlights from Saturday’s scrimmage were impressive performances by a pair of players who have stolen the spotlight this spring.
True freshman wide receiver Latroy Pittman continued to garner attention. He was named the offensive player of the day and is quickly emerging as one of the go-to players in a receiving corps in desperate need of a star.
“A guy that continues to make some plays,” Muschamp said. “He does some nice things vertically down the field, he blocks.”
On the other side of the ball, Ronald Powell was named the defensive player of the day for the second straight week. Powell has become much more consistent this spring and is showing signs of living up to the No. 1 billing he had coming out of high school in 2010.
“He continues to do a nice job for us,” Muschamp said.
Overall, the Gators didn’t get to do enough to make any real judgments about where they’re at. Muschamp wanted to continue working on the depth chart at running back, which will be a focus in today’s practice.
GatorCountry.com will have more on the running back battle this afternoon.
“Wish we could have gotten more in Saturday,” Muschamp said. “We’re going to go out and try to do a little bit more today as far as that’s concerned, as far as moving the ball down the field.”
Florida has been fairly banged up this spring, with a bevy of players missing playing time due to injuries. Defensive tackle Leon Orr returned to practice last week after suffering a shoulder injury.
The Gators are also hoping to get three receivers back today from various injuries. Juniors Stephen Alli and Solomon Patton are both expected back after recovering from groin injuries, while redshirt freshman Ja’Juan Story is expected back from an ankle injury.
All in all, Muschamp said his team is fairly healthy despite having 11 players on the injury report.
“Really right now we’ve got some guys that have got some minor things as much as anything,” he said. “We’re very healthy right now. Everybody’s kind of day to day as far as the guys that have been injured. Hoping to get those guys back.”
WR Ja’Juan Story – Ankle – Expected back today
WR Stephen Alli – Groin – Expected back today
WR Solomon Patton – Groin – Expected back today
CB Marcus Roberson – Neck – Non-contact for spring
OL Ian Silberman – Shoulder – Out for spring
OL Tommy Jordan – Shoulder – Out for spring
DL Dominique Easley – Torn ACL – Out for spring
DL Kedric Johnson – Undisclosed – Out for spring
DL Earl Okine – Back – Out for spring
LB Lerentee McCray – Shoulder – Out for spring
CB Jeremy Brown – Knee – Out for spring