Florida picked up a major victory off the field with Lakeland (Fla.) defensive tackle John Brown finally getting approval from the NCAA Clearinghouse. Brown can now return to practice with the Gators after having been unable to participate since August 20.
"It's great news - the University of Florida and the NCAA did a great job of working together," Urban Meyer said.
This is the second consecutive year Meyer's entire signing class has qualified for UF. He's lost just one signee to academic issues since arriving in Gainesville. Because of the time he had needed to spend getting his academics in order, Brown wasn't in top shape during the two weeks of Florida's August drills that he was able to take part in. Even though the Gators still have issues at the defensive tackle spot, it's unlikely he will become a factor there this season.
THIRD TIME'S NOT THE CHARM
Maybe Florida's been passing out warm milk and playing lullabyes in the locker room at halftime instead of Gatorade and pep talks. Whatever the cause, the third quarter has been the Gator offense's Achilles heel thus far.
After failing to score in the third quarter against Troy, Florida's point totals by quarter are now 35, 42, 7, and 24 - and that's with over half of last week's fourth quarter not being played.
THE MORE THE MERRIER
Florida's offense put on a clinic in the first half, amassing 342 yards on 40 plays for an average of just over 8.5 yards per play. Six different players scored the seven Gator touchdowns in the early stanza, which offensive coordinator Dan Mullen feels will make the Gator attack more challenging to prepare for.
"I like it because I hope it makes us hard to defend when you have so many different guys who can put the ball in the end zone," offensive coordinator Dan Mullen said.
Even though much has been made of Florida's depth at receiver, few of them saw many passes against Troy. On a night the Gators piled up 59 points, only five Florida receivers wound up with a catch, and just three had more than one.
After scoring two touchdowns in week one, Riley Cooper had just one pass thrown his way all night and no receptions.
TURNOVERS STILL SLOW
Two games into the 2007 season, the Gators have not shown their knack for feasting on turnovers that was on display throughout last year. Dustin Doe's recovery of an Omar Huagabook fumble on a failing fourth down conversion attempt and defensive end Justin Trattou's tip and subsequent interception of a Haugabook pass are the only takeaways for Florida thus far.
Andre Caldwell's fumble on the first offensive play of the second half against Troy is Florida's only giveaway this year.
FAMILIAR FACE, DIFFERENT PLACE
The last time Tim Tebow shared a football field with Austin Silvoy, they were sharing the excitement of a 2005 state championship victory for St. Augustine (Fla.) Nease.
Silvoy caught four of Tebow's passes for 44 yards in Nease's 44-37 win against Armwood. Now Silvoy's a redshirt freshman wide receiver for Troy, and he had a big day against the Gators with two touchdown catches and a team leading five grabs for 72 yards.
Tebow was able to talk with Silvoy after the game and gave his friend credit for the performance.
"He had a really good game," Tebow said. "I'm happy for him, but I didn't want it to happen."
PLAY FREEBIRD, MAN!
Urban Meyer's wife Shelley was announced earlier this week as the host of the 2007 edition of Gator Growl, which will take place November 2 as part of Homecoming weekend leading up to the Vanderbilt game.
In her host role, Meyer addressed the crowd at halftime to deliver some news. In addition to previously announced headlining comedian Frank Caliendo, Gator Growl will feature a live performance by Lynyrd Skynyrd. It's not clear whether UF's third quarter struggles were tied into player's excitement about this news.
As if the excitement of the Tennessee game won't be enough to have the crowd in a frenzy Saturday, there will be a special group of former Gators at the Swamp.
Word is the 2007 basketball national championship rings will be presented as part of the day's festivities and all the members of the '04 class are expected to be in attendance. You're not likely to see that group of guys in one place again anytime soon with NBA camps opening at the beginning of October, so enjoy the moment.
UF/Troy: Odds and Ends
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