The 2018 Gator Football season kicks off this weekend with the Orange and Blue Debut on Saturday at 3 p.m. All eyes will be on Dan Mullen’s offense, including the returning and debuting receivers.
— Dan Mullen (@CoachDanMullen) April 13, 2018
One of the vital returning pieces of the Gator offense is 6-foot-2 junior receiver Tyrie Cleveland. In 2017, he finished with 22 receptions for a team-leading 410 yards and two touchdowns. Cleveland is a big-play threat, catching the game-winning 63-yard touchdown bomb from Feleipe Franks to beat Tennessee last season.
Kadarius Toney plays in a plethora of positions. In 2017, he finished with 14 receptions for 121 yards, 15 rushes for 152 yards and one pass for 50 yards. As long as he can keep his health, he can be a dangerous man on the offense in a number of positions.
In 11 games in 2017, 6-foot receiver Freddie Swain recorded eight receptions for 96 yards and one touchdown. His highlight of the season was his game-winning catch against Kentucky, which marked a 13-point comeback victory for the Gators.
One of the biggest stories out of the Gator football camp is whether or not transfers Van Jefferson or Trevon Grimes will be deemed eligible to play. Although their future is clouded in uncertainty, Gators head coach Dan Mullen says that the transfers have remained positive and worked hard.
One thing is for certain: the Gator offense can use all of the help it can get, and these guys would undoubtedly provide that.
Van Jefferson (Ole Miss)
Van Jefferson, a 6-foot-2 redshirt junior, transferred to Florida from Ole Miss this year. His high school coach cites a lack of involvement as his reason for looking for a new challenge in Gainesville. Despite his feelings, Jefferson finished second in receiving at Ole Miss with 42 receptions, 456 receiving yards and one touchdown. He was generally deployed in the slot but played elsewhere occasionally.
Trevon Grimes (Ohio State)
Trevon Grimes, a 6-foot-5 sophomore, also transferred to Florida this year, but from Ohio State. Grimes has much less collegiate experience, making three receptions in two games in the 2017 season. However, he was highly rated coming out of high school. Although he only played three games of his senior year due to injury, Rivals rated him a 5-star recruit.
Something that Mullen and wide receiver coach Billy Gonzales have stressed is hard work. Gonzales says that the guys need to work harder than they have in the past. He stresses the importance of giving absolutely everything until the end of the whistle and wants to focus on the little things with the players.
Orange and Blue
The game will kick off at 3 p.m. on Saturday.