Cummings, Debose don’t travel to Birmingham

Two players didn’t travel with the Florida team for its appearance in the Birmingham Bowl.

Interim coach D.J. Durkin told reporters after Wednesday’s practice that wide receiver Andre Debose and defensive tackle Darious Cummings didn’t make the trip to Birmingham. Debose not making the trip was a personal decision, and Cummings violated team rules.

Cummings played in all 11 games this season, totaling 30 tackles and five tackles for a loss. He had two sacks, two pass breakups and six quarterback hurries, the third most on the team. Cummings also had one fumble recovery during his senior season.

Debose was barely used on offense in his final season. He had two rushes for 30 yards and one catch for a loss of three yards in 2014. The senior was an important piece of the Florida special teams unit, serving as the only player on the Florida roster with more than six punt or kick returns. Debose averaged 14 yards per punt return and had one punt return for a touchdown. He averaged 24.7 yards per kickoff return with a long of 43 yards.

Florida will also be without defensive lineman Bryan Cox, who had hip surgery and is out. Cox had six tackles for a loss and four sacks this season to go with three quarterback hurries.

The Gators arrived in Birmingham on Tuesday and will face East Carolina on Saturday at 1 p.m. EST on ESPN. It’s the final game for Pirates senior quarterback Shane Carden and wide receiver Justin Hardy. The two programs will also face off during the second week of the college football season in 2015.

Durkin took the reigns of the Florida program as soon as the regular season came to an end. No announcement has been made about the future of any Florida assistant coaches, but with defensive coordinator Geoff Collins having a background at linebacker and Randy Shannon reportedly hired to coach linebackers, it’s unlikely that Durkin will return.

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