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4 posts from October 7, 2013

October 07, 2013

Notebook: Purifoy honored after gaudy performance

GAINESVILLE -- Gators cornerback Loucheiz Purifoy collected his first-career interception during Saturday’s win over Arkansas, earning himself a pair of respected honors Monday.

Following a splendid statistical performance -- a pick-six, sack-fumble, four tackles and three pass breakups -- Purifoy was named the Walter Camp National Defensive Player of the Week and the Southeastern Conference Player of the Week.

“We weren’t playing very well defensively,” coach Will Muschamp said. “Then [Loucheiz] leveraged the receiver perfectly, and the ball was thrown behind the receiver. It was a really nice play on the ball, and obviously, scoring [afterwards.]”

Purifoy’s interception-turned-touchdown highlighted the Gators’ 30-10 win over the Razorbacks, giving the Gators an early 10-7 lead they never relinquished.

GAME TIME ANNOUNCED

Florida’s Oct. 19 travel to No. 25 Missouri is set for 12:21 p.m. ET and will be televised on SEC TV.

The Tigers -- in just their second year in the SEC -- are one of only two remaining undefeated teams (Alabama) in the league.

DRISKEL UPDATE

Muschamp said injured quarterback Jeff Driskel (broken leg) has been present for all team meetings and was at Florida’s team hotel last weekend, but is unsure if Driskel will make the trip to LSU.

“I don’t know that he can [physically] travel,” Muschamp said. “He still has a pretty large sized boot on his ankle. As far as a cast is concerned, traveling is kind of hard. But I’ll talk to him about it.” 

THIS & THAT

Muschamp (again) stated cornerback Marcus Roberson (knee) would play Saturday against LSU. Roberson has missed UF’s last three games. … Freshman linebacker Jarrad Davis -- winner of this week’s special teams hard hat award -- suffered a laceration to his cheek in the win over Arkansas but was stitched up and is fine to play this weekend. “He’s a guy that going to throw his face in the fan, I can assure you that.” … Muschamp said nose tackle Darious ‘Bear’ Cummings played his best game of the season versus the Razorbacks. … LSU offensive coordinator Cam Cameron (former San Diego Chargers OC) squared off against Muschamp (defensive staff member of the Miami Dolphins) one time when both coaches were in the NFL in 2005. The Dolphins beat the Chargers 24-20 late in the year. 

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"I don't take any offense to it"

ICYMI: Yesterday, I wrote a piece on Tyler Murphy's rapid progression as Florida's starting quarterback and included several (rather defensive) comments from coach Will Muschamp labeling Murphy "a game manager." 

On Monday, UF's redshirt junior responded with his thoughts of "what a game manager is," as well as his admiration for Alabama quarterback AJ McCarron, LSU's electric Death Valley, being a tough "self-evaluator" and Florida's offensive improvement in recent weeks. 

 

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Muschamp Musings

GAINESVILLE -- A midday buffet of coach Will Muschamp’s best quotes from Monday’s press conference…

* On good-on-good work in practice…

“We work good on good every day. I just don’t know how you get better. Iron sharpens iron. And you’ve got to go against good people in order to do that because in our league that’s what you’re going to face every day. Every Saturday.”

* On LSU quarterback Zach Mettenberger’s improvements this season…

“Everybody matures as different ages. I know we're all in an instant coffee society where we want it right now and that's not always the way it is. Sometimes that happens with players, so from a maturity standpoint he's playing at an extremely high level."

* On LSU being so good at Death Valley because of the assembled talent…

“There ain’t no doubt, normally whose on the other sideline helps.”

* On mixing coverages versus the Tigers’ talented recieveing corps…

“Defensive football is a lot like war. If you line up in the same spot, you’re going to get blown up. So you got to be able to change some things up, play some split safety, play some middle field coverage, get your numbers right in the box and stop the run. But against a quarterback like Zach [Mettenberger] and the talents they have on the receivers position you got to be multiple in what you do.”

* On biggest red-zone improvement in recent weeks…

“Taking care of the football. If you end every possession with a kick, you’re going to win a lot of games. So I think we’ve been more efficient. We’ve worked in there a bunch in training camp, so I can’t sit there and tell you we’ve spent more time in the red-zone. We’ve spent a bunch in training camp because that was a huge emphasis for us coming into the season. But I think more than anything just taking care of the football, making better decisions.” 

* On the possibility of winning a 51-48 shootout…

 “As long as we win, I don’t care. Honestly. I got real caught up in all that stuff when I was a coordinator. When I’m a head coach, I wanna win. If it takes 51-50, let’s go. .. Absolutely [long pause) and then we’d watch the film on Sunday and figure out what we need to do to get better, but I can tell you right now, I used to grab those stat sheets when I was a coordinator. Not anymore. There’s one stat that matters and that’s winning. Do what you gotta do to win games. It’s hard enough on Saturday afternoon without worry about all that other stuff. Just do what you gotta do to win.”



* On junior linebacker Michael Taylor…

"He is a tenacious young man. Michael is around the ball a lot. Obviously, in our defense we try to clear some things up for the linebackers to make plays. He's a guy who is around the ball, has very good instincts, and when you're around the ball a lot is going to happen. … He's a very colorful young man. Probably the best way I can say it. Football is very important to Mike. He goes out and practices every day. He brings his heart out there and he works extremely hard, he's very smart, he understands our defense.”

Follow me on Twitter @JesseReSimonton

Poll Position: Movin' on up

Florida rolled past Arkansas 30-10 on Saturday night in The Swamp, and for the second week in a row UF was rewarded with a slight bump in the national polls. 

The Gators (4-1, 3-0 SEC) jumped one spot the Associated Press top 25 (No. 17) and two spots in the USA Today coaches poll (No. 17). 

Florida travels to Baton Rouge this weekend for a SEC showdown with No. 10/11 LSU (3:30 p.m. ET, CBS).

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