Oct 29, 2016; Jacksonville, FL, USA; Georgia Bulldogs defense and Florida Gators offense at the line of scrimmage during the second half at EverBank Field. Florida Gators defeated the Georgia Bulldogs 24-10. Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Spring Preview: O-Line Shaping Up Under New Leadership

Florida Gators 2017 Coaching Staff: Brad Davis – Assistant Coach, Offensive Line

Under a new coach and high expectations, Florida’s offensive line shaped up throughout the spring and is ready to get to the nitty-gritty for the Orange and Blue Debut.

Florida football welcomed new o-line coach Brad Davis to the staff this season, in replacement of Mike Summers. He joins the Gators from North Texas, where he was the run-game coordinator and offensive line coach. The year before that he coached at East Carolina.

Davis said his integration into coaching the Florida offensive line hasn’t been a difficult one because familiarity and experience of the players. What he couldn’t stop raving about was the group he had to work with. Davis said his room of players  are not only great off the field but are ready to meet expectations.

Low Numbers, High Intensity

Much of a struggle that can come from spring football is the lack of bodies on the field to even out drills and reps. The offensive line is waiting on around seven freshman linemen to join them, but Davis said the group he’s had out there this spring has understood that they can’t drop the tempo.

Davis said the buy in really started when they began to see results. He said they focused on being more physical at the point of attack and being able to run the ball.

Filling The Gaps

The biggest role that will need to be filled is left tackle David Sharpe. One of the consistent forces for the Gators on the line, Sharpe stared in all 13 games, one of only two Florida players to do so.

There’s a lot of talk of who will be the Gators quarterback in the fall, but there’s also some competition for who will be hiking it to him. Cameron Dillard, the 2016 season center, announced his transferring after the Outback Bowl. Although Dillard suffered a season-ending knee injury, he played and started in Florida’s first eight games.

Coming Into Their Roles

The competition is led by redshirt-freshman T.J. McCoy. McCoy appeared in seven games throughout last season and made four starts. He took over at the role in the game against South Carolina and then started the final four contests of the season under center. Brett Heggie is his less experienced counterpart who didn’t see game action last season but adds depth to the position.

Sophomore Martez Ivey is also returning to the line and made thirteen starts last season at left guard and has continued development inside out this spring. He’s a two-time SEC Offensive Lineman of the Week (UGA, South Carolina) and was named Second Team All-SEC by the league’s Coaches and the Associated Press.

Jawaan Taylor was the only freshman to play on the offensive line last season and will most likely continue to have a role this season. He played in all 13 games throughout the season and started 12 at right tackle. The young player proved himself on the field and was selected to the Freshman All-SEC Team by the leagues Coaches’ and Gridiron Now… Member of ESPN All-SEC Bowl Team.

Although Tyler Jordan faced some injury last season there is promise in his return. He has experience at right tackle and center and gained game time in 11 appearances.

The season may not start officially for another five months, but Florida fans will get a taste on Friday night at the annual Orange & Blue Debut. Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m.

About Savanna Collins

Check Also

LIVE THREAD: National Signing Day

Here’s an updated thread of all the recruits who picked the Gator hat today! RB …

AFC Divisional Round Preview: Pittsburgh Steelers

During last weekend’s NFL Wild Card round, the Steelers made a statement by handing the Dolphins a …

Houston Looking For an Upset in Foxborough

The saying has always been “it’s hard to beat a good team twice,” and in …

Blue Jackets vs. Lightning Tonight

The Columbus Blue Jackets and the Tampa Bay Lightning will be facing each other once …

Possible Additions to McElwain’s Recruiting Class Visiting this Weekend

With National Signing Day less than three weeks away, the Gators are hosting several talented …

Florida Gymnastics Prepares for Season Opener

GAINESVILLE, FL – The Florida Gator gymnastics team will kick off their season this Sunday …

Surprised Gators Promote Randy Shannon To Defensive Coordinator? You Shouldn’t Be

Florida’s head coach, Jim McElwain, announced Friday morning that Randy Shannon would be making the …

Quarterbacks in Spotlight for NFL Wild Card Weekend

The NFL Wild Card kicks off Saturday and the quarterback situations could not be any more different. On …

College Football Playoff Shakes Up Schedule

The College Football Playoff was a success in its first year. Yet, that doesn’t stop …

Michael Jordan Speaks out about Shootings, Police Officers

NBA great Michael Jordan opened up about his thoughts about shootings of African-Americans and the …

Treon Harris to Transfer

With the college football season approaching, the Florida Gators have announced that former starting QB …

USA Basketball Wins Second Exhibition Game

Just a few short days after their big win over Argentina, team USA won its …

Charlotte Is No Longer The Home Of The 2017 NBA All-Star Game

The House Bill 2 came between Charlotte, North Carolina and the 2017 All-Star Game. The …

Tampa Bay Rays Continue Series Against Oakland

The Tampa Bay Rays are continuing their three-game winning streak. The Rays defeated the Oakland …

MLB Preview Tonight

It’s summer time—the best time to go to a baseball game and experience the atmosphere. …

Braves Begin Series With Rockies

The Atlanta Braves (33-62) open up a four-game road series with the Rockies (43-51) tonight …

Marlins To Close Out Series With The Phillies

The Miami Marlins are in the middle of a crucial ten game span against NL East …

Rays Crush Rockies 11-3, Face A’s Next

In the midst of a terrible season that has seen the Tampa Bay Rays (37-57) …

American League Second Half Outlook

The second half of the baseball season is in full swing which translates to? Pennant races. Teams …

National League Evening Preview

Tonight is a busy night for the National League in the MLB. Starting with the …

Big 12 Looks To Expand

Following a Tuesday meeting between Big 12 presidents, Oklahoma president David Boren announced that the …

LSU Looks To Capitalize On Its Opportunity

The Louisiana State University Tigers will enter the 2016 college football season with high expectations, …

Muschamp Helps Close Out SEC Media Days 2016

It wasn’t Will Muschamps first SEC Media Days experience, but 2016 marked the first time …

Phil Mickelson Leads British Open After First Day

The 145th annual 2016 British Open is underway at Royal Troon Golf Club in Scotland. The …

Missouri’s Football Crisis: Rebuilding A Program

On the final day of SEC Media Days, Barry Odom took the stand as Missouri’s head …

Second Half Of MLB Season Begins

The All-Star Break is a good time for teams to rest up and reform themselves …

British Open Underway

The 145th Open Championship is already underway at the Royal Troon Golf Club in Scotland. Welcome …

Lightning, Panthers Set for Battle for Florida

It’s the battle for Florida. The team on the Gulf Coast against the team on …

Leave a Reply