With little practice, Florida receiver Frankie Hammond Jr. showed up to the SEC Indoor Championships and took third in the high jump. Now his ankle is hurting.
GAINESVILLE -- Frankie Hammond Jr.'s stint with the track team certainly was short lived.
A receiver on the Florida football team, Hammond Jr. competed in the SEC Indoor Track and Field Championships this weekend. He finished third in the high jump but apparently aggravated an ankle injury in the process. What does that mean? No more track and field for Frankie.
"We take him when we can get him," UF track and field coach Mike Holloway said.
Instead of competing with the track-and-field team this weekend in a "last-chance meet" to qualify for the NCAA Indoor Track and Field Championship in College Station, Texas, Hammond Jr. will now focus his energy on getting healthy for spring football practice. Practice begins on March 25.
"He has a bad ankle and he had a phenomenal performance," Holloway said. "It was just really great watching him compete this weekend but his ankle is a little sore and we think it's just best that he gets ready for spring ball now."
Known for leaping ability, Hammond Jr. needed just two days of practice before the SEC Championships at the University of Kentucky to take bronze in the high jump with a leap of six feet and 11 inches.
"It was a very impressive showing, very impressive," Holloway said. "Everybody in the building was very impressed with Frankie this weekend."
Hammond Jr. won gold at the 2007 AAU Junior Olympics in the high jump. He parlayed a breakout senior season with the Hallandale football team in 2007 into an unlikely football scholarship to the University of Florida. He impressed coaches last preseason with his ability to quickly grasp the Gators' complicated offense. After receiving a redshirt to add muscle to his 6-foot, 170-pound frame, Hammond Jr. is expected to compete for playing time this spring.