Wide receiver Antonio Callaway suffered a foot injury during practice on Wednesday, and his status is up in the air for Florida’s rivalry game with Georgia on Saturday in Jacksonville (3:30 p.m., TV: CBS). Florida coach Jim McElwain was uncertain about his availability while coming off the practice field Wednesday.
“We’ll see, something in his foot,” McElwain said. “We’ll kind of see what happens there, but we’ll get that report and see what’s up.”
If the freshman were forced to miss the game, it would be a big loss for the Florida offense. He is second on the team with 308 receiving yards and two touchdowns. Callaway’s 19.2 yards per catch is the highest of any Florida player with more than two receptions on the season. He also has two rushes for 17 yards on the season.
He’s also playing an important role as the punt returner. Callaway is averaging 14.8 yards per return, including a 72-yard return for a touchdown in Florida’s last game at LSU on October 17.
“We knew coming into camp that the guy was very special,” Florida running back Kelvin Taylor said. “He made a lot of big-time plays in camp, and everybody knew he was going to be special. It really didn’t surprise people, to be honest. In camp, the guy was making one-handed catches left and right during camp. Everybody knew the guy was going to be a big player at receiver.
“He’s young, but the dude is very mature. He understands this game, understands what he’s doing. Take the ball, get vertical quick. The guy is just an explosive player. He’s just going to keep getting better and better.”
Callaway was likely to see his role increase out of the bye week. Despite being second on the team in receiving yards, he’s only fourth on the team with 16 catches, behind Demarcus Robinson (36), Jake McGee (23) and Brandon Powell (20). The freshman could see the targets increase if he’s able to play on Saturday.
“He’s got to learn positionally where he’s at,” McElwain said. “That’s a developmental thing. Really it just depends on where the coverage is, you take what the defense gives you, but I know given the opportunity he’s a guy that will obviously go up and do everything he can to catch the ball. He’s getting to be a better blocker. He needs to understand the importance of that as well in the outside run game.
“That being said he’s definitely a top-notch SEC receiver. We kind of knew what we were getting when we recruited him. Obviously, he’s living up to that.”
Besides Callaway, the Gators are in good shape heading into Saturday’s game with Georgia.
Defensive tackle Khairi Clark is questionable after he “took a hit” during Wednesday’s practice. Clark has played in six games this season with three tackles.
Linebacker Alex Anzalone isn’t practicing, but McElwain said there have been no conversations about him taking a medical redshirt.