As we play a little catch up jersey #75 now belongs to Fordham senior transfer Mason Halter. At 6-foot-6 and 295 pounds he comes to Gainesville with a big time All-American pedigree at Fordham. Certainly the level of competition will be a step up, but his maturity and experience playing on a bigger stage than all the high school linemen coming in, should allow the big man to see the field early and push for a starting job on a line that really needs some new blood to step up.
Jersey #74 belongs to true freshman Fredrick Johnson of West Palm Beach, Florida. I expect Johnson to get himself in the mix at tackle as well. At 6-foot-6 and 305 pounds he is another that is physically mature for being a true freshman. He comes in with the attitude that he wants to own one of the spots on the line and it is exactly what this unit needs with all of them.
We broke out Martez Ivey’s jersey a little early and then he arrives on campus and gets #73. Ivey surprised this writer by showing up weighing 302 pounds on his 6-foot-5 frame. Honestly it is about 17 pounds more than he wanted to weigh coming in, but it is more around the weight he needs to play at as a Gator. The consensus top tackle in the country coming out of high school, Ivey is expected to not only contend but get a spot in the starting lineup. Easier said than done, but he has the credentials.
There is no #72, 71, or 70 on the current roster.
Walk-on offensive lineman Nick Davis has #69 and the local Gainesville native is a redshirt sophomore in the Gator program. At 6-foot-5 and 256 pounds Davis isn’t expected to see much playing time in 2015 and there were rumors swirling that he may leave the program. He played a few downs in both the Eastern Michigan and Eastern Kentucky games in 2014 and that is the extent of his playing time so far.
Ft. Lauderdale St. Thomas Aquinas saw a couple of their seniors sign with the Gator and jersey #68 belongs to STA’s Richerd Desir-Jones. He may be raw having been a two way player at STA, but at 6-foot-4 and 290 pounds and a wrestling champion, he has the physical ability and maturity to make a move in his freshman season. Again, not one to count on, but his future could be a good one.
Jersey #67 belongs to big, bad Brandon Sandifer, with the emphasis on big. The Warner Robins, Georgia native entered Florida at 6-foot-5 and 357 and likely about 20 pounds higher than he wants and needs to be, but he knows it. Still, there is something to be said for a guy that already has the size to compete and can work himself down to get where he needs to be. Sandifer will definitely get his chances at guard where the Gators appear to be thinnest right now.
Wednesday was the 66th day before the start of the Gator football season and #66 belongs to Nick Buchanan of Dunwoody, Georgia. He’s a tad underweight with certainly enough time to get to where he needs to be having reported at 6-foot-4 and 285 pounds.
Thursday is day 65 and there is no #65 on the current roster. We talk true freshman Tyler Jordan at #64 on Friday as we continue the countdown.