Feeling Disrespected

I guess you could call this trash-talking, but there seems to be some genuine disagreement between at least one Florida player and at least one member of the Crimson Tide, and the verbal jabs are underway as Alabama prepares to play fifth-ranked Florida on Saturday in Gainesville.

Florida linebacker Earl Everrett told the Orlando Sentinel that having Alabama come into The Swamp, Florida's home stadium, would help the Gators avenge their 31-3 embarrassing loss to Alabama in Tuscaloosa a year ago.

"We've got them here in the Swamp this year," he told the newspaper. "It's going to be a different ball game now."

On Tuesday, Alabama receiver D.J. Hall and his teammates had gotten wind of such comments, and Hall fired away.

"Pretty much they're not giving us much respect," Hall said shortly after coming off the practice field on Tuesday. "They think because we're playing them at Florida it's going to be different. But the grass is green just the same on any field - except Boise."

(Boise State sports a strange looking blue artificial surface on its field.)

"I figured we would have gotten a little respect, but they ain't giving us nothing," Hall said.

A native of Fort Walton, Florida, Hall takes this game a little more personally than many of his teammates. He said Tuesday he probably shouldn't have done the Gator Chomp symbol with his arms on the sideline of last year's game, but "it was in the heat of the moment. I probably had it building up in me a little bit being from Florida, and some things that happened during my recruitment."

Hall said the previous coaching staff at Florida in place before Urban Meyer showed up "heard some stuff and the kind of fell off and stopped recruiting me a little bit."

A familiar storyline - but from the opposite perspective - was played up in the run up to last year's game was Hoover's Chad Jackson returning to play for Florida back in his home state against Alabama and Coach Mike Shula, who was not around during his recruitment.

Florida's secondary, Hall said, played a much different style than did Arkansas', with the Gators running Cover-3 (three-deep zone) as opposed to Arkansas' cornerbacks playing man-press defense (one-on-one against the receiver with no safety help).

"I think we've got a bigger chance this week of putting up numbers than we did against Arkansas," Hall said.

Quarterback John Parker Wilson said on Tuesday that Florida's defensive backs were better than Arkansas', however.

"Arkansas played that press and they couldn't cover those guys (Hall and Keith Brown)," Wilson said. "Florida's defensive backs are better than Arkansas, but they are going to have a tough day just because they (Hall and Brown) are hot right now."


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