Blackmon Hopeful to Return Against Gators

Tray Blackmon gives an update on his ankle and talks about a possible return against Florida.

Auburn, Ala.--Tray Blackmon's coming out party at the college level was midseason of 2006. After a redshirt year in 2005 and a suspension to begin the year, Blackmon made his debut and was a difference maker in his first game against Florida. He caused and recovered a crucial fumble on Chris Leak and disrupted the Gator offense for much of the game. The Tigers held Florida scoreless in the second half and won 27-17.

Blackmon went on to play five more games in his freshman season before missing the Cotton Bowl. He was healthy and in good standing coming into his sophomore campaign, but sprained an ankle in the first half of the first game of the season. After missing three more games, there is a strong probability that he will make his return to the lineup against none other than Florida.

"I was excited, emotional, going wild and my adrenaline was pumping," he says of his college debut. "I'll never forget that game. That was my first college game ever against Florida. For us to beat them and them to go on and win it (the national championship), and they're coming back ranked pretty high this year, it's a big game. It happens to be my first game back from my injury. I'm really looking forward to it."


Blackmon is shown knocking the ball out of Leak's hand in last year's contest.

Blackmon has practiced on and off and even gone through pregame warm-ups in recent weeks before making the decision that he couldn't play on his injured left ankle.

"It's feeling a lot better and I'll try to practice on it this week," he says. "I'd say (it's) about 90 or 95 percent."

Something has to give on Saturday as Auburn is 14-2 away from home since 2004 and Florida has won 18 straight games at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium.

"I've heard about it," Blackmon says of The Swamp. "I like when the crowd gets in the game going all wild whether they're cheering for their team or whether we're at home with our team. It's just the atmosphere of being out there with all of the people coming to see you play and just screaming and hollering. That's what it's all about it once you get out there on the field and you see all the people in the stands."

Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. CDT on ESPN.


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