McElwain ‘irritated’ by sloppy practice

Florida coach Jim McElwain understands there are reasons why Monday’s practice was bad, but that doesn’t mean he accepts it.

The Gators went through a long scrimmage on Saturday, running over 100 plays and it went well for the first scrimmage under the new regime. Starting in the second half of the spring, it’s understandable to think college-age players could be overwhelmed by learning a new scheme or high on themselves after a good day on Saturday.

Whatever the case, McElwain didn’t buy into any excuses.

“It wasn’t very good,” Jim McElwain said. “The attention to detail and focus was not what needed to be successful, and it bothered me. That irritates me when we take a step back. Everybody came here today to get better or worse, right? You chose whatever your mindset was when you walked through that door.

“Our mindset was not to get better today. It was to endure the practice. It really bothered me. That’s unacceptable. You don’t do that and play championship football. It wasn’t good. You can see, I’m a little irritated about it, and rightfully so.”

McElwain made it clear that while Saturday’s scrimmage was a positive, there were still enough corrections that needed to take place on Monday, keeping the players from getting overconfident. They went through those in practice, but the players didn’t put enough attention to detail where it needed to be.

It’s the first time the first-year Florida coach has felt this way since the spring started. Coming in the ninth of 15 practices this spring, it could be worse. He also added that it wasn’t every player on the field that had the wrong mentality. The lost practice is what aggravated him the most on Monday

“You don’t ever get it back," McElwain said. "You don’t. It’s lost forever. That’s the disappointing thing. When you invest in yourself, we all make a choice how we’re going to approach that rep, how we’re going to approach that day, how we’re going to approach that practice, that meeting, that class, that tutor session. It’s all a choice and a decision. And today a lot of guys – and I’m not saying everybody – a lot of them came out with a choice and a decision not to get anything done, not to focus, and to endure rather than drain the tank and get better. That was irritation. It’s not acceptable. That’s the bottom line."

The coaches will spend tomorrow going over the practice film with the players, and they’ll return to the practice field on Wednesday.

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