GAMEDAY: Casey Griffith the Senior Snapper

Casey Griffith is not an every day name on the Gator's football roster. He's a 6th year senior that lives the life of obscurity normally associated with long snappers on a football team. Griffith enjoys his role on the team and enjoys the fact that he isn't as well known as some of the others on the team. He just likes being there for the excitement of Gator football.

Not many folks know what the life of a long snapper for the Florida Gators, so Casey tells us, "It's one big joke. Nobody takes you serious. You don't do much. You spend half your time on the field with your head between your legs." You just have to know Casey to understand that he enjoys the self humiliation. He is a humorous guy that talks like his job isn't important, but he takes it very seriously.

Casey is going into his 6th year this season. He was granted a waiver from the NCAA to be granted a 6th year because of severe injuries that kept him off of the playing field for more than just one complete season. He has earned his keep. The only time fans notice the long snapper is when he messes up and under the watch of Casey, it hasn't happened too much. Casey has snapped a lot, but tells us his proudest moment was a moment that didn't actually happen during the game. "It was Senior day (the first time). I was glad for my dad that he got to be out there because he played football too."

Casey had mixed emotions when he was granted his sixth year of eligibility. "I was real damn happy when I got it back and real pissed off it happened before summer conditioning. We didn't know I was going to get it, so I was kind of living a little bit of the high life. At the start of summer conditioning I was definitely throwing up at the top of the stadium."

What does a wild guy like Griffith do in the off-season? He earns a little spending money as a bouncer at a local night club in Gainesville. That shouldn't be a surprise to anyone that knows anything about him. He shares some tales from his job with us: "Miami people used to come in there all the time and talk (bleep). One time they kept screaming something at Rex (Grossman), so I grabbed them by the neck and threw them out. Sean Taylor came in there and I said, 'Don't think we don't know who you are and don't think we don't know this is Gator Country.' Then he looked at me, and I was like, 'I'm sorry'. He was a hell of a lot bigger than me."

Those that frequent the message boards on Gator Country may remember the long letter Griffith wrote in defense of the team and the coaching staff after the end of last season. At the time, Griffith thought his playing career was over, so his moratorium on participating on internet message boards was over. The letter was very eloquent and he shared the thoughts of a team he no longer thought he was going to be a part of. He went on about the hard work and the talent that was being assembled for the Gators and that the fans would very happy in the near future.

Casey says it's still very much the same way today. "We want to validate everything we have been working for. We have a bunch of young guys. I am glad I came back this year with this much talent stacked, and they are just good guys. We don't have any guys that are taking away from the team. In the past we kind of had one or two of those big name guys that got full of themselves. There isn't any of that now. Even the big name guys are real humble. Channing (Crowder) is a good guy, he can play ball, but he also is a leader and he helps teach the guys, get people motivated, and has fun too. Chris (Leak), he's real quiet, he isn't going to blow up. Mike Degory and the other guys, they all make it fun. That's why I wanted to come back. I don't know what I would be doing if I couldn't be here with these guys."

Casey Griffith is a very passionate Gator on and off the field. He has worked his tail off to be a solid long snapper and one that the coaching staff has the utmost respect and confidence in. The Gators are lucky to have him back for one more season and he's most definitely looking forward to officially snapping the ball this Saturday for the first time in a year.

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