December 15, 2007

Florida: Cast Off

Much to the Gator Nation's sigh of relief, Florida quarterback Tim Tebow had the cast removed from his broken right hand on Friday and - to no one's surprise - practiced without any problems. Remember, the Heisman Trophy winner did not have much trouble with his hand before it was placed in the cast. He sustained the non-displaced fracture during the team's Nov. 24 win over Florida State and played the majority of the game with his hand broken before seeking medical attention. The cast also did not get in the sophomore's way when he hoisted the signature Trophy after his name was called in New York last weekend. But still, getting the cast off is certainly a relief, especially coming so far ahead of the Jan. 1 kickoff of the Capital One Bowl.

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November 25, 2007

Florida: Superman Is Human

Turns out college football's Superman is human, and he's got a broken right hand to prove it. Florida quarterback Tim Tebow will be in a cast for at least two weeks after breaking his non-throwing hand during Saturday's I'm-gonna-win-me-the-Heisman performance against Florida State. After doing some preliminary sideline tests, team doctors told the sophomore he could stay in the game, but X-rays later showed the injury was far more severe than originally thought.

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November 19, 2007

Florida: There's More

As if having Superman on the team weren't enough, Florida just got another hero back. Wide receiver Percy Harvin worked out on Sunday for the first time in two weeks and head coach Urban Meyer expects Harvin, the team's second-leading receiver, to be back on the field for Saturday's game against Florida State. If Harvin starts, that will mark the first time in more than two months that the defending national champions have had all of their pass catchers healthy in the same game.

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November 11, 2007

Florida: Harvin MIA

Just when things were starting to look up for Florida's three-loss season, the Gators were primed to take another hit on Saturday, but all turned out for the best. No. 17 Florida had no trouble putting away South Carolina, 51-31, despite the fact that star receiver Percy Harvin stayed home sick. Harvin had a sinus infection that kept him in Gainesville while the rest of the team made the trip to Columbia to take on the Gamecocks.

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November 07, 2007

Florida: Wishful Thinking

Florida quarterback Tim Tebow needs both shoulders to play his best. Yes, he's got a powerful left throwing arm, but just as powerful is his head-down, hit-you-in-the-mouth running style that has not been quite the same since he suffered a bruise to that non-throwing shoulder three weeks ago. He was not himself in the team's loss to Georgia, and it became apparent how much the Gators need a healthy right shoulder on their QB. It looks like Vanderbilt was nice to Tebow, however, as the sophomore told head coach Urban Meyer that he is within striking distance of feeling 100 percent because he did not take a single hit against Vandy last Saturday. Except that Meyer isn't sure he believes his starting QB.

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November 01, 2007

Florida: A Fighting Chance

As beaten and banged up as Florida's defense is, Thursday offered some good news to the Gator faithful. Even with his broken thumb, safety Major Wright will play this Saturday against Vanderbilt, and offensive lineman Mike Pouncey may be offering some help to the flailing defense by getting into the rotation at defensive tackle.

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October 29, 2007

Florida: Defensive Pains

Florida's 2006 national championship team was known for its defense. The 2007 incarnation, not so much. Florida's defenders are young and inexperienced, and Saturday's loss to Georgia exposed them as such. The loss also banged them up even further, peppering the Gators with injuries and robbing them of at least two key contributors.

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October 26, 2007

Florida vs. Georgia: Who Knows?

While the uncertainty Florida is feeling around the shoulder health of its star quarterback is mostly over-cautious, Georgia has some legitimate uncertainty to handle before the Bulldogs take the field against the Gators on Saturday. Head coach Mark Richt may have to start freshman tailback Caleb King, stripping him of his redshirt, to compensate for the loss of senior tailback Thomas Brown. Except that Richt is not yet sure of Brown's status, and would rather keep King redshirted than play him now. Brown injured his collarbone three weeks ago against Ole Miss and may be out until the Nov. 10 matchup with Auburn, if not longer.

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October 23, 2007

Florida: Hurting In The Clutch

The Gators are flying high after last week's win over Kentucky, but with SEC showdowns on the horizon against Georgia, Vanderbilt and South Carolina, they cannot afford a moment's lapse. Or, as the case may be, a moment's pain. Quarterback Tim Tebow is dealing with a shoulder contusion, free safety Major Wright has a broken finger that may sit him for a few games, wide receiver Riley Cooper also has a broken finger, offensive lineman Carlton Medder has a heel injury, and cornerback Markihe Anderson and wide receiver Bubba Caldwell are still not 100 percent. If last week was Bubba at 90, the Gators have plenty to look forward to, but the other host of injuries is cause for some concern.

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October 21, 2007

Florida: Intermission At The Tebow Show

Saturday night's spectacular win over Kentucky lifted Florida in the rankings, but may have come at an immeasurable cost. Florida's Superman quarterback Tim Tebow bruised his right shoulder in the second half of that 45-37 win over Kentucky. Although he was able to play through the pain in his non-throwing arm, just because head coach Urban Meyer says that he is going to limit the number of times Tebow carries the ball does not mean that he actually wants to. Or has a game plan that will allow him to.

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October 18, 2007

Florida: Anderson Ready, At Last

Cornerback Markihe Anderson has gone from regular contributor to sideline supporter this season, as groin and knee problems have kept him off the field for two months and out of all but two games for the Gators. But the sophomore's role on the team should be changing again on Saturday, as it looks like Anderson will be ready to step onto the field against Kentucky.

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October 04, 2007

Florida-LSU: Balance Out

Saturday's probably-should-have-been-bigger SEC matchup between No. 1 LSU and No. 9 Florida should still be the game of the week, even with two key players missing the showdown due to injury. Luckily (or unluckily, depending on where your loyalties lie), the two injuries should balance out, as LSU wide receiver Early Doucet will have to sit out this one, but so will one of the Gators who would have been assigned to cover him, cornerback Markihe Anderson.

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October 01, 2007

Florida: One Step Forward, Two Steps Back

The newly-demoted No. 9 Gators are already in the midst of answering a host of questions after Saturday's loss to unranked Auburn, but the coaches suddenly have some internal questions to answer, as well. Offensive tackle Phil Trautwein and running back Chris Rainey are officially out for the rest of the season, but receiver Andre "Bubba" Caldwell numbed some of the the team's pain, since he should be back up to speed for Saturday's game at No. 1 LSU. And they will certainly need him.

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September 27, 2007

Auburn: Back In Blackmon

Auburn has been missing starting linebacker Tray Blackmon for the last three weeks, but with their biggest game of the young season scheduled for Saturday, when the Tigers travel to Gainesville to face No. 4 Florida, Auburn will have Blackmon back in the mix. The timing could not be better for the 6-foot, 223-pound linebacker, who had his first career game a year ago against the Gators. In that contest, he recovered a fumble and had a 22-yard return on the play, an effective SEC welcome for the then-freshman. Although he may not start this week, having him available to play will be a big boost for the Tigers, especially with fellow linebacker Merrill Johnson staying home to nurse a hurt shoulder.

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September 26, 2007

Florida: Harvin Not All There

Florida standout receiver Percy Harvin has been limited in practice for two days now, but that does not mean he will be limited on Saturday when Auburn comes to town. Harvin injured his hip in last week's 30-24 win at Ole Miss and has not fully recovered, but should play anyway, which is good news for Florida -- in addition to having the best game of his career last week (11 catches for 121 yards), the 5-foot-11, 187-pound sophomore leads the Gators in receiving (21 catches for 336 yards and 3 TDs) and ranks third on the team in rushing (20 carries for 155 yards and 1 TD).

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September 17, 2007

SEC: Sore Winners

Playing in the nation's toughest conference means taking some big hits, even when you win, and after this week, no one knows that better than Florida, South Carolina and Mississippi State. Each team put up a big win over the weekend, but took a big hit in personnel in the process - florida lost linebacker Jeremy Finch, South Carolina is missing tight end Weslye Saunders and Mississippi State is down quarterback Michael Henig.

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September 15, 2007

Florida: Gators Update

Florida is rolling over Tennessee, but offensive lineman Maurkice Pouncey and cornerback Markihe Anderson are missing out on the fun after leaving the game in the first quarter. Pouncey, a true freshman, strained his achilles tendon and is out for the remainder of the game. Anderson, who was playing with a sprained MCL, will have an MRI on his right knee after reaggrivating the injury in the first quarter. He is still in the locker room as the third quarter ticks away. The Gators do not seem to be struggling without the two injured players as they continue to put together superior play on both sides of the ball, mostly led by the fearless offense of quaterback Tim Tebow.

Florida: Alligators Ailing

The Gators are still in the first quarter of their battle with Tennessee, but the roster has already been depleted. Freshman offensive lineman Marukice Pouncey left the field with help in the first quarter to receive an X-ray on his ankle. Cornerback Markihe Anderson, playing with a sprained MCL, was also hurt in the first quarter. He reaggrivated the existing MCL injury and also left the field in the first quarter. Urban Meyer said before the game that Anderson would not take the first rep, but would certainly see extensive playing time. Obviously that time will be cut short, as Anderson is stuck in the locker room.

September 14, 2007

Florida: Playing Through Pain

Florida wide receiver Andre Caldwell's sprained ligament is serious enough to keep him out of Saturday's SEC opener against Tennessee, but plenty of other Gators will take on the Vols, despite a variety of lingering ailments.

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September 10, 2007

Tennessee: Gaines Loses

According to Tennessee coach Phil Fulmer, cornerback Antonio Gaines has sustained a "significant injury" that will keep him out of Saturday's game against No. 5 Florida. Fulmer has not released specifics about the injury, which Gaines sustained during the Vols' 39-19 win over Southern Mississippi on Saturday. With Gaines hurting, freshman safety Eric Berry moved to corner and Jarod Parrish came into the safety spot. The Gators are also missing some personnel, as receiver Andre Caldwell is definitely out with a sprained MCL and running back Brandon James is questionable with a sprained ankle.

September 09, 2007

Florida: Down Two For 22

When No. 5 Florida takes on No. 22 Tennessee next week, the Gators may be down two game-breakers - receiver Andre Caldwell and running back Brandon James were both casualties of Florida's 59-31 win over Troy in Week 2. But they're not the only ones hurting in Gainesville.

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September 07, 2007

Florida: Anderson Downgraded

After waxing optimistic on Wednesday, Florida head coach Urban Meyer had some backpedaling to do on Thursday. He watched cornerback Markihe Anderson practice earlier in the week and saw enough healing in the sophomore's sprained knee to announce that he would start Saturday's game against Troy, but has since changed his mind. Anderson will not start Saturday's game and may not play at all.

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September 05, 2007

Mid-Week SEC Woes

The SEC may be the nation's toughest conference, but it's running the risk of becoming the nation's most depleted conference, as well. The injury reports keep mounting from the Southeast and this week was no exception, as Ole Miss and Florida both had bad news to report: Rebels receiver Dexter McCluster should keep his close relationship with the sidelines and Florida's secondary couldn't really afford another hit, but cornerback Markus Manson certainly didn't intend to be carted off the field after Tuesday's practice.

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August 30, 2007

Florida: Oh Captain, No Captain

Phil Trautwein, a senior captain who started every game for the Gators in 2006, has another stress fracture in his foot, which is nothing new for the experienced offensive lineman. What is new is the possibility that this one may take him out of the entire season. He's definitely out for this wekeend's opener against Western Kentucky and despite coach Urban Meyer's reassurances that the defending national champions have plenty of depth at O line, they have got to be feeling a certain sense of dread with one of the team's top leaders a big fat question mark for the entire 2007 season.

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