Gators ready for satellite camps

While the NCAA and its governing bodies decided to be wishy-washy with regards to summer satellite camps for member football programs, the Florida Gators under Jim McElwain weren’t going to wait round and see what was going to happen. The Gators have been preparing to hit the road in different geographic areas of the country just in case things opened back up as they did.

A little over a month ago, leaders of the major conferences agreed that the member schools would no longer be allowed to hold satellite camps for prospective athletes away from their normal practice facilities and basically on campus.  

A few weeks later and just a couple of weeks ago, that was overruled and with some stipulations, now everyone is free to do it.

The Southeastern Conference has been against this for some time and would not allow their members to conduct such camps off campus. But, with the turning tide in recruiting comes change and so the SEC has decided they don’t want to be left out.

The Gators will be ready. Already we here of plans for Florida and the University of Texas to combine for two camps in each state they are a part of. Both would hit major recruiting cities in the state and figure out a plan on how to run the camps and conduct the recruiting part of it.

We have word that the Gators will be Virginia in June working with a few colleges as well. No doubt huge prospect areas like Atlanta, Charlotte, and a few others are on the agenda.

“We had plans in place,” McElwain said via teleconference earlier in the week. “We talked about that, for whatever the rulings were. The rules the way they are, we’ll use them to let our guys to get out to places and instruct some camps and do some evaluation along the way.”

“We’re in the process of putting our travel show together. It should be fun and I ‘m looking forward to it.”

McElwain wasn’t ready to make a huge deal of the situation. The time frame is a 3-4 week period in the summer and certainly getting the kids on campus would be a much better thing.

“They all have to fall within the camp dates anyway,” he said. “It’s a matter of making contact and setting up a plan. It’s one of those deals where you will do whatever you can within the rules to help you be successful. That’s what everybody is doing.

“I don’t get much caught up in it,” he said about the hubbub. “We’ll coordinate a direction and do what we can.

Important time on campus as well…

With the end of spring classes and summer just around the corner, most coaches will tell you this is the time of year that your team does its most building.

With limited contact in terms of coaching, a lot of the summer is left up to the individual players to make sure they show up to camp in tip top shape in the fall. McElwain goes right along with that sentiment.

“The most important time, and you truly find out what your team is made of, is over the summer,” he said. “When you’re out there working and developing leadership… all the relationship building that goes on at a time of year when it is easy for them to stray.”

Will his 2016 team have the right kind of leaders to do big things?  This is where we will find out.

“We’ll find out when they get back together in July what this team is all about,” he said. “We’ll find out the leaders. In my opinion, it’s the most important time for your team to build as they are out there working.”

Ivey improving…

Kan Li / Scout
 One player that has done the required work to be in the best shape he can is sophomore offensive lineman Martez Ivey.  Ivey started most of the season at guard, but played through some pain and a hurt shoulder. After the season, he had surgery and now he is mending.

Evidently the recovery has gone pretty well.

“He’s been great,” McElwain said of Ivey. “In fact, he’s back to doing a lot of things we need to do in the weight room. He actually had a really good spring from the standpoint of the rehab situation and is ahead. Yet, we need to make sure we don’t push it too soon.”

With Ivey out in the spring due to recovery, it allowed that many more reps to be spread around to linemen that haven’t had those reps already. When he returns, he could play guard or tackle, and with all the extra reps his teammates got, they should have a better idea of where he will fit to help the most.

“It allowed us to work some different combinations as well in the offensive line,” McElwain said. “That is a group that should push forward and be a strength for us.”

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