Thursday Practice Report

Medder misses practice, Webb still questionable, and watch out for Leak's ambidextrous abilities....

Guard Max Starks said part of Ron Zook's problem in naming a quarterback was that he has a lot of feelings for his players, a lot more than former coach Steve Spurrier.

"He [Spurrier] never cared about anybody's feelings," Starks said. "Coach Spurrier just worried about the offense. But Coach Zook is a personable individual and he worried about other individuals and tried to put himself in their position. I understand that it's going to be something that's going to hurt the other guys' feelings, but you have to understand it's something to help us win."

Starks never expected that he would make a permanent transition from left tackle to right guard, but he seems to be dealing with it. After all, there are always those run-pulling guard plays.

"Yeah, at the guard position you have different plays where you can pull,' said Starks, who played at Lake Highland Prep. "I did it in his high school with the triple option. I pulled every other play. You can really hurt people when you have someone of my mass out there."

So much for feelings.

ACADEMIC PROBLEMS: True freshman Carlton Medder missed practice Thursday because of academic reasons. Zook did not give a timeframe for his return, but said, "He'll be fine."

Medder, an offensive lineman from Clermont, was not among the rookies expected to make an immediate impact.

STILL QUESTIONABLE: Cornerback Dee Webb, who twisted his ankle during one-on-one drills Tuesday, remains questionable for Saturday's game.

"It's going to be close," Zook said. "He's going to try and make it, but he sprained it pretty good." Webb is listed third on the depth chart behind Johnny Lamar and Matt Jackson.

REGRETS: Of all the true freshmen Zook didn't play last season, he regretted keeping wide receiver Reggie Lewis sidelined the most.

"They may not be ready in terms of the way you want them ready today or Saturday, but three or four or five weeks into it they are is what I noticed last year," Zook said. "I can remember thinking, 'Man, we should've played Reggie Lewis. He was ready. At that point in time he could have helped us."

MAKING THE RUN: Zook revealed that he had planned to walk onto Florida Field before his first game as coach – rather than running with the players -- to temper enthusiasm. But tailback Ran Carthon grabbed him before the game and said, "you're leading this team out," which he did.

IN THE KNOW: On his weekly television show, Gator Hotline, Zook said he has informed the team of who will take the first snap at quarterback Saturday. "Our players know who's going to start," he said.

TAKE YOUR PICK: Believe it or not, freshman quarterback Chris Leak actually has the ability to throw a 30-yard pass as accurate with his left hand as he can with his right, which could completely eliminate the blindside.

Offensive coordinator Ed Zaunbrecher said he doesn't mind if Leak attempts the left-handed pass – under one stipulation.

"I'll never tell a guy he's not allowed to do anything except throw interceptions," Zaunbrecher said.

BACK INSIDE: Sylvester McGrew has left his temporary position at tight end to move back to offensive guard. McGrew changed his jersey number back to No. 52 on Wednesday, an offensive lineman's number.

Fightin Gators Top Stories