Now likely to start at right guard, Trenton Brown came to Gainesville with loads of bad weight. He needed to reshape his body and did that with help from the team’s nutritionists and workout plan. When he got to Gainesville, he has a scheduled stop every day at Zaxby’s.
With those plans cancelled for the foreseeable future, his playing weight is the same, but his body looks and feels completely different.
“I’ve got good weight now,” Brown said with a smile.
Coming into last year, Brown actually wanted to redshirt. He thought he would need a year to get used to football in the Southeastern Conference. Those thoughts had to be erased early when a string of injuries hit the offensive line and he was forced on the field.
"I really did want to redshirt but they needed me to play so I played and tried to make the best of it," Brown said.
He’s thankful that it happened now. He’ll be counted on in a major way this season and wouldn’t feel as comfortable with that if he didn’t get on the field last year.
"I got a chance to feel what SEC ball is like, playing 60-70 snaps a game,” Brown said. “I know what it feels like to play in this division."
GARCIA ADJUSTING TO CENTER: The quarterback didn’t always know where the ball was going in the spring. Max Garcia was dealing with a position change, snapping the ball at center for the first time in his life. It was such a concern late in spring that the coaches started to rep other offensive linemen at the position.
Early in fall camp, Garcia has calmed down any fears about his ability to stick at center.
“I think he’s making a great adjustment,” Trenton Brown said. “Everybody has those days where you have to get used to stuff. I know I had to get used to it inside. I think he’s having a great transition.”
Redshirt freshman Cam Dillard is the second team center early in camp. Florida tried Trip Thurman out at the position in the spring, but with Garcia’s comfort level increasing, it looks like the senior will be able to handle the job.
“(The snaps) are a lot better since spring,” Brown said. He had never snapped the ball before spring, and he looks like he has been doing it his whole life now.”
TAYLOR TURNING HEADS: Kelvin Taylor made an immediate impact last year as a freshman, and heading into his sophomore season, he looks set for an even bigger year. Expected to be the starting running back, Taylor spent time in the weight room trying to get stronger.
“We’re normally in the same workout group,” Brown said. “Watching him workout with Coach Dillman, he’s probably one of the strongest running backs I’ve seen.
“He’s added a more physical side to his game. Sometimes he doesn’t have to make that extra cut, he may just run over the top of somebody.”
SUMMERS DRAWING PRAISE: The offensive line play has struggled in the three years under Will Muschamp, but if you listen to the players this fall, they think they’ve found the right position coach to get the group back on track.
Mike Summers has 34 years of coaching experience and has been all over college football. His experience is easy to see on the practice field.
“I love Coach Summers,” Brown said. “He could’ve went anywhere and coached. He could’ve went to the NFL or any other college. I think he’s something special.”
Like Kurt Roper, Summers brings a positive approach to the practice field, but he’s also focused on the smaller parts of the game. His players rave about his technical analysis of the position.
“He’s a great coach,” Florida right tackle Chaz Green said. “He’s a technician. He’s very detailed. He explains things in a way many can understand. We like him a lot. He makes sure our technique is on point.”