ASK ACK: Questions answered about practices

Sports Radio & TV Personality Brady Ackerman's "Ask Ack" is back and live! It debuts today with questions from our fans about practices, Meyer's offense, reviewable plays, and more...

Brady, Glad to see your recent piece in Gator Country. I will always watch you as the most understanding and knowledgeable member of the press. I have one concern: The worst thing that can happen with the start of practice is a heat related injury or worse. Are the coaches, use to Utah conditions, aware of the conditions they will face in two a days? If yes, I will be relieved, if no please make them aware.

This is a good question and thanks for the comments. Heat related injuries are major concerns at every program and especially in the state of Florida with the humidity. The staff is well aware of the conditions as we've seen from practices so far and I believe is one reason why the Gators will practice five times only with full squad two a days. I would like to defend strength coaches and trainers around the country when I say some of the responsibility is on the student athlete. If coach lets the team off early on Saturday night, going out and "dehydrating" your body during camp is not a good idea. Also, players must follow the strength coaches recommendations during camp on hydration and diet. UF has been conducting some practices very early in the day and later in the afternoon to help mitigate the heat factor.

Ack, who do you think Meyer will name as backup quarterback and do you think Portis will redshirt if he is third team?

I think it may be the week of the first game before he announces anything and he may not do it all. Unless there are injuries the team should have Leak, Dickey and Portis ready to go for Wyoming. I don't see anyway they could redshirt Portis but I could be wrong. He is very talented and if he has a good camp could end up seeing some playing time this fall. Dickey will have a package in the offense even if he is not the top backup - we've already seen him take plenty of reps at wide receiver in practice.

Brady, some people say Meyer's offense is a gimmick and won't work in the SEC. What do you think?

I have always laughed at the gimmick offense reference. Really, there was only one true "gimmick" offense and it was the run and shoot. It was actually the shoot and run and it did put up big numbers. Hal Mumme's offense at Kentucky was called this but Mike Leach implemented the same offense at Oklahoma and Josh Heupel won Stoopsy his only National Title so far. Meyer's offense is really pretty simple and sound. He makes sure each and every person is on the same page and like most good offenses he will run a play that works until you stop it. Meyer also uses his offense to take advantage of his personnel's strengths. If he has a running quarterback they run him, if he doesn't they run others and throw more. In my opinion this is the mark of a solid offensive system. So many coaches today try to "outsmart" everyone else that they get away from what they are doing that works. Meyer's track record says his system will work in any conference in college football, including the SEC.

What are some of the plays that can and cannot be reviewed this year in the SEC and how long will it take?

First of all, I love the new replay system in which all the direction comes from an official in the press box. He will have all the resources to stop plays in motion and use all the camera angles to make sure the play gets called right. I also think the time will be faster than the system used in the Big Ten and should take no more than 45 seconds. Let me give you some real examples of plays that can and cannot be changed: Ciatrick Fason's fumble vs FSU two years ago is a reviewable play and as we all know would have been overturned. The non-starting of the clock by the officials in the Tennessee game last year is not reviewable and would not have been ruled in UF's favor. The SEC actually asked the NCAA to approve this and the NCAA shot them down saying only plays that are overturned can effect the resetting of the clock. Here are some non-reviewable plays: Holding, Offside, Pass Interference, Illegal Block, False Start, Fighting Participants, Taunting and Illegal Formations. You can review runner not ruled down, number of players on the field, whether a runner crossed the goal-line and touching of a kick. Hope this clears up some confusion on the SEC instant replay. The ACC will use the same system as the SEC.

Ack, I think UF can win the SEC and I can't understand all the hype with Tennessee. Are you on the Vol bandwagon and are they the team to beat?

I will never be on the Vol bandwagon, but I do think they should be pretty good. They get Kevin Simon back from injury they have a nasty front four on defense and by moving Jason Allen to corner it will improve their secondary. On offense I like Ainge at quarterback and Jimmy Ray Stephens told me this summer that the offensive line should be better than last year. If Tennessee can steal the game at UF or LSU they are in good shape for the conference and with a split are still in the National Title hunt. One thing that does not bode well for the Vols and Phil Fulmer: His team has never played great when they are the favorites and with the coaches poll putting the pressure on, I could see the Vols struggle. I do think they are the team to beat in the East with Georgia backing up and South Carolina missing some much need weapons.

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