As many college football seasons are coming to an end, Florida is awaiting the 25th SEC Championship game against No. 1 Alabama.
Plenty of injuries, losing to Tennessee for the first time in 11 years and a big quarterback debate marred the season. But head coach Jim McElwain did his job nonetheless.
McElwain was brought to Florida to take the Gators to Atlanta, and so far he is 2-2, batting 1.000.
“I can shoot free throws better than Shaq,” McElwain said.
McElwain pressed on being brought in to fix offense. "I was also brought in here to get to Atlanta. How many years have I been here? OK."
— Thomas Goldkamp (@ThomasGoldkamp) November 28, 2016
McElwain Sees Positives
First, the bad:
- Florida is coming off an FSU loss with an 18 point deficit.
- The Gators lost to Tennessee breaking their 11 game winning streak.
- Florida can’t decide on a quarterback.
- Seven starters will be injured going into the SEC Championship, six of them on defense.
- The Gators won the SEC East, but let’s face it, the East is really, really bad.
All complaints that can be heard by football fans, but that doesn’t phase McElwain.
Despite fans’ criticism, McElwain sees a successful season. He said all in all, Florida has made it to the SEC Championship maybe not the way people wanted, but they are still in a position where they can win the SEC as a whole.
100% Out: Jordan Sherit (leg) and Cameron Dillard (knee)
Most Likely Out: Luke Del Rio (shoulder), Jarrad Davis (ankle), Alex Anzalone (arm), Marcus Maye (arm), Nick Washington (ankle) and Bryan Cox (ankle)
Questionable: Jeawon Taylor (arm), Martez Ivey (ankle), Ahmad Fulwood (ankle), Duke Dawson (ankle) and Daniel McMillian (shoulder)
Although Florida is limited, Alabama is also having some minor trouble on the homefront. Defensive back Eddie Jackson ended his season with a knee injury, and he was the Tide’s secondary. After losing another defensive back, Marlon Humphrey, to a leg injury on Saturday, ‘Bama threw in their former walk-on Levi Wallace against Auburn.
McElwain said he sees a lot of things that he wishes he could have done with the offense this year, but that is for the off season. He said the fact of the matter is, he is still in season when many others aren’t.
This offense, ranked 114th nationally, will take on the country’s No. 6 defense. The Gators’ defense used to be their saving grace as they were the best in the country, but now have been hit with countless injuries taking them down a notch.
Kyle Trask or Felipe Franks need to be ready next year. I can’t keep dealing with this nonsense #Gators
— Joe Colella (@JoeC1063) November 27, 2016
Former back-up quarterback Austin Appleby is leading the Gators as Luke Del Rio is out with a shoulder injury. If Appleby fails, next up would be red-shirt freshman Felipe Franks, who’s never stepped foot in a Gator game, let alone the SEC Championship.