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Steady progress


GAINESVILLE — Spring football is always full of eternal optimism, but Florida coach Will Muschamp is confident he isn’t spewing hot air. 

Muschamp, oozing positivity Tuesday, recapped UF’s latest scrimmage and declared Florida fans will be delighted with what they see during Saturday’s Orange & Blue Debut (1:30 p.m., PPV). 

“I think when they see our football team and offensively where we are, I think they’ll see a formidable unit on defense playing well,” Muschamp said. “They’re going to see a good-looking team. We’re going to have a good team next year. We just need to continue to progress. … Our guys have a lot of confidence in what we're doing [offensively].  A lot of belief in what we're doing. I think we lost that late in the year and that's changed automatically without having to do anything.”

Other than multiple staff changes.

But according to Muschamp, Florida’s new offensive staff has excited a hungry group —  especially quarterback Jeff Driskel — eager to wash away the ills of a year ago. 

The instillation of Kurt Roper’s up-tempo, spread offense has gone smoother than Muschamp anticipated, with the offense’s potential (purportedly) showcasing well in the closed scrimmages. 

"Overall, pretty pleased with the Saturday [scrimmage],” Muschamp said. 

“The effort, guys got after it and competed. I think offensively we're further ahead than where I thought we would be at this point as far as from an execution standpoint. There's still some things that we've got to get better and clean up, but I'm pleased with where we are.”

During the Muschamp’s scrimmage summation, he noted standout efforts from Driskel, junior defensive end Dante Fowler Jr., sophomore safety Keanu Neal, the first-team offensive line and others. 

In less than one week, Gators fans will have their own chance to gauge the offense's improvements in a game-like atmosphere, but in the meantime here's a bevy of notes from the closed scrimmage.

********** GOOD **********

* The offense produced 10 explosive plays — five running, five passing.

* Tailbacks averaged more than five yards per rushing attempt.

* Florida’s inexperienced receiving corps continues to improve, highlighted by Ahmad Fulwood’s 52-yard touchdown catch. Demarcus Robinson also collected a touchdown reception during the scrimmage. 

* Other positives included third-down efficiency and the quarterback run game.

* UF’s specialists — disastrous last season — had a productive day, as Austin Hardin (7-of-9) and Frankie Velez (7-of-8) were “much more accurate kicking the football.” Muschamp also noted punter Kyle Christy’s spring revelation. 

“He's really punted well. I think he's had a good spring. I really do, I think he's punted well. His confidence is up and he's done some nice things."

********** BAD **********

* The offense had four procedure penalties. 

“Four too many,” Muschamp said. “We have to continue to get that out of our game.” 

* Driskel threw one interception — “a nice play” by early enrollee Jalen Tabor. But according to Muschamp, the ball “should’ve been caught or knocked down by the receiver." 

* Other noted issues: two fumbles (none lost), three drops, offensive line fatigue. 

********** UGLY ********** 

* Muschamp said the defense had 22 missed tackles — the majority coming in the secondary — and 18 “eye control” errors in the defensive backfield. 

“We don’t have a starting nickel right now,” he said, in a rare moment of frustration Tuesday. Brian [Poole] and Duke [Dawson] have been in there. We may look at Marcus Maye in there. We need to get better at that position. It’s a position that’s been very productive for us over the years, but we need to get better at that position.”

* Continued shotgun snap issues. 

“Disappointed [with the poor snaps]. … If we continue to have those, we need to look in another direction.”

Follow me on Twitter @JesseReSimonton


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That picture above shows Muschump after he got his Noline to block the Dline instead of each other. Love it.


Bad snaps, drops,fumbles, penalties, nOline fatigue?, bad snaps? Sounds like last year. LMAO

Thanks for keeping up with latest Gator news you candy cane trolls. Please get a life and stop being so pathetic. But I understand why you are so obsessed with the Gators. So thanks for stopping by. 36-9

Excited about the new season! Let's go Gators! C H O M P

Hey, ollie can learn. WOW! He got the score right. Congratulations. Now learn this. I am here because of all the trolls on the Canes blog last year. All we heard was sec sec se c .told us how uf would hand us our first lose. Then by mid season it was all sec sec sec talk. If it wasnt you, thank your fellow bloggers.

He said if we continue to have those ( bad snaps ) we will have to go in a different direction. Does that mean he is going to fire Roper already? Why is the oline fatigued jesse?

hey bleak, spell much? maybe you can learn something too.

Spell alot...look it up . A simple goole will do. Sorry about not capitalizing at the beginning of my sentence and the space in between se c was intentional. Spelling looks good though.

Sorry missed the g in google ...thouht i would tell U so you dont google goole too.

This team is gonna suck!

Hopefully there is a week off ahead of the showdown with Georgia Southern.

And there it is again the 12 year old mentality. I only do it because you do. Grow up loser!! That's about as immature as it gets. And the fact that you continue to admit that's why you do what you do, is even more pathetic.

LOL. JESSE, you need to change the name of this article to " let's hope for progress ". How does someone play football for this long and make it to this level and still have that many bad snaps? I could maybe see in a big first game with nerves and all , but in a practice? Who evaluates talent here?

So much for the BB title....how's the gymnastics team faring?

You all are actually fielding a team for a spring game this year....congrats!!!!

What I am MORE impressed with is....there has not been a Turd arrest for QUITE some time now.....WOW....TRIPLE CONGRATS!!!!!!!

Wow...just looked at your schedule.....you all have 8 home games and 4 road games this year. You all REALLY are pathetic.....AFRAID TO TRAVEL?????

You have to ACTUALLY come out of your hole to be competitive!!!!!

The SEC.....where it's ALL MOKE AND MIRRORS!!

12 troll posts before noon. Sid you really should get a job, a hobby, some friends, a girl and a life. But who am I kidding, 40 year old smelly virgin, you can't get any of those that's why you are here.

"I am here because of all the trolls on the Canes blog last year. All we heard was sec sec se c .told us how uf would hand us our first lose. Then by mid season it was all sec sec sec talk."
sid that's what you said LAST year, about the one before.
Is this some kind of cane thing like "always next year".
Like "we are back" repeated every year.
No matter your excuse you are here because you are an A hole and have no life. You can't spell either. Or put more than one sentence in proper syntax.

Jesse when Mus says that last year they had lost confidence in what they were doing and now they regained it without "having to do anything", I agree with you that is not true. As you point out coaching changes were made. Obviously this brings a change in scheme, a whole new offense. But I also think that having the starting players that were hurt back in action a big change as well. That combination of new coaches with new schemes and getting all our guys back is what has me believing in this team again.
Go gators!!!

Didnt help against the Canes last season before injuries. Muschamp is a politician holding onto his job by a thread. He will tell U what you want to hear. He is gonna get his payout and laugh all the way to his next assistant job.

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