If there’s one thing “The Head Ball Coach” knows it’s quarterbacks. And specifically, Steve Spurrier knows the “multiple quarterbacks strategy” isn’t the worst thing in the world headed into a season. In fact, it’s something he did in Gainesville, or more than one occasion, including the the 2000 season where he alternated Rex Grossman and Jesse Palmer throughout the entire season and still won the SEC Title.
Spurrier dropped into the “Paul Finebaum Show” Tuesday afternoon and shared a little Florida QB knowledge with Paul and the viewers.
— Paul Finebaum (@finebaum) June 27, 2017
Newly transferred Malik Zaire from Notre Dame will look to take the stronghold on the job being more experienced than Felipe Franks and not coming off an injury like Luke Del Rio. Zaire didn’t make his move to Gainesville without causing a stir though.
As we wrote previously, the SEC had implemented a policy that if the graduate transfer doesn’t actually follow through and get his post-graduate degree within a year of playing, then the school must wait over a three year period before it can accept another such transfer.
Well as we know now that rule was bent and reshaped and now Zaire is a Gator. And, today, Spurrier said to not be surprised if we see a little bit of two quarterback action in the early stages of the season to see what both Franks and Zaire have. Though Zaire is all too familiar with that set up as it caused him to come to Florida in the first place, could he be wrapped up in it again?
A few questions immediately pop up as the season starts with a huge game vs the Michigan Wolverines. Is running multiple QB’s going to offset the rhythm or could it be an effective strategy to propel them to a win?
Another question is: what about Luke Del Rio, the man who was the starter last season before an injury derailed season? Coming off off-season surgery Del Rio may already be behind. He could make up the ground by having the stake to the claim as last year’s starter, but is that really enough?
If he fails to become the man to start, could we see Del Rio transfer, yet again? The answer is probably so with the way the college football quarterback landscape has been. If it’s not your job, you go find another.
At the end of the day the Gators QB depth is better than it was last year, and they have a lot of different cards to play this season Franks and Zaire can bring some real play-making and excitement to the position that this program has lacked since Tim Tebow.
Gators announced home and home series with Cal Friday
The Florida Gators continued their philosophy of striking “home-and-home” deals with Power 5 opposition, when they announced on Friday that they will be doing so with the Cal-Berkley Bears out of the Pac-12 coming later in this decade.
The Gators made the announcement through their website and social media mid-day Friday that they will play Cal at home first and then travel to Berkeley the following year:
Coast to coast❗
🐻 at 🐊 2026
🐊 at 🐻 2027#GoGators
— Gators Football (@GatorsFB) February 7, 2020
A.D. Scott Stricklin has broken up the long tradition that Florida would only play two home out of conference games in September and usually, against much lesser competition before entering SEC play. Stricklin has been very outspoken that in the age of the College Football Playoff, strength of schedule is emphasized and the selection committee holds schools responsible for not playing top-notch out of conference opponents, at least some of the time.
With that in mind, the Gators opened the 2019 season in Orlando against the Miami Hurricanes and won a sloppy game. And, they already have other Power 5 schools laid out to play home and away.
As we previously wrote, Florida will be playing the Texas Longhorns first in Gainesville in 2030 and then. return the game the following year in Austin.
Florida had previously announced last year that they will also play the Colorado Buffaloes out of the Pac-12, again with the first game in Gainesville in 2028 and then, returning it to Boulder the following season.
It’s interesting with Friday’s announcement that Stricklin and the football program are working backwards with the schedule. And, they will now play Cal before Colorado in September of 2026, and then will be opening on the Berkeley campus the following season.
Florida and Cal have only met two times, having played first in Gainesville in 1974 as the Gators wo 21 – 17 and then, they also met in Tampa to open the 1980 season with a Florida 41-13 blowout victory.
Second National Signing Day recap for top state schools
National Signing Day 2020 has come and gone, and several in state schools were able to improve their classes heading into spring ball. The University of Florida watched rival Georgia secure the number one overall class, but the Gators were still able to land the best class in the state with the number eight class overall.
The Gators officially signed former five-star receiver Justin Shorter from Penn State, and Florida stayed in the family today as well, Xzavier Henderson officially joined the Gators. He’s the ounger brother of former DB C.J. Henderson.
Dan Mullen also able to dip into the state of Texas inking four-star DE Princely Umanmielen. It wasn’t all great news for the Gators, as they missed out on a few key guys, including losing out on arguably top state safety Avantae Williams to in state rival Miami. Overall it was a good cycle for the Gators both recruiting and in the transfer portal.
The Miami Hurricanes continued an impressive offseason on National Signing Day. The Canes made arguably the biggest move in the state by landing Williams and keeping him Florida. Williams became the highest rated Hurricane in the class and propelled the U to the number 13 spot.
Miami has the second-best class in the ACC behind Clemson. With an impressive offseason in the books, once again excitement will be in the air in Coral Gables. The question is: will they live up to it in year two for Manny Diaz?
Florida State and new coach Mike Norvell have been working hard to get this class rolling last minute. After a good early National Signing Day Norvell looked to keep the momentum going. The Noles took a big hit Wednesday though, with the loss of Venice four star WR, Malachi Wideman, who flipped to Tennessee.
The Noles came back from that by landing a handful of other recruits. They got the number six Juco running back La’Damian Webb, ass well as, Robert Scott, an offensive lineman and Corey Wren, an athlete/running back.
Replacing Cam Akers will be tough for Norvell and building the offensive line is a top priority. The former Memphis coach came in late like he did, yet he finishes with a decent class sitting at 22 on 24/7.
Now the work begins turning around the former powerhouse.