Florida Football
Gators quarterback Graham Mertz throws the ball in the football team's scrimmage on Tuesday. Photo courtesy of Brieanna Andrews.

Florida Football Begins Spring Practice

The Florida football team is set to kick off spring practice Thursday to commence Billy Napier’s third season as coach.

2023 Season

The Gators finished their 2023 season with a 5-7 record, losing their last five games.

It was Florida’s second straight season with a losing record and the first season since 2017 when the Gators did not qualify for a bowl game.

Offseason Changes

During the offseason the program made various changes to the coaching staff.

The Gators brought in a new linebackers coach, Ron Roberts, who will also serve as the Gators’ executive head coach and co-defensive coordinator.

Florida also snagged former Los Angeles Charger’s assistant secondary coach Will Harris, as the Gator’s secondary coach after letting Corey Raymond go.

The Gators also hired former Tulane defensive line coach Gerald Chatman, Cleveland Browns offensive line coach Jonathan Decoster and promoted Tyler Miles to director of football strength & conditioning.

Player Changes

Eleven transfers will join the Gators, along with Florida’s highly anticipated 2024 recruiting class.

The ’24 recruiting class is led by quarterback DJ Lagway. He is a five-star recruit who earned various awards in high school, including Gatorade National Player of the Year.

A number of key pieces are returning for the Gators. Coming back at quarterback is Graham Mertz. Running back Montrell Johnson Jr., and wide receiver Eugene Wilson III will also be back.

There is a major component not returning. Wide receiver Ricky Pearsall Jr. declared for the 2024 NFL draft, and recently participated in the NFL Combine.


Former Florida edge rusher Princely Umanmielen also left the Gators’ roster this offseason, transferring to Ole Miss.

Looking Ahead

The Gators will compete in their annual Orange and Blue Game at 1 p.m. April 13 at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium.

The 2024 season will kick off Aug. 31 when the Gators welcome Miami to The Swamp.

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