Orange and Blue Game Wrapup

Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to go to the Orange and Blue Game. That’s one of the few sucky things about living in Charlotte (besides all the ACC fans): I can’t just go to Gainesville whenever I want.

Anyway, my parents and brother did make the game. Rather than give a rundown of all the media coverage of the game, I’ll instead tell you what they told me.

My brother was very disappointed that Tim Tebow didn’t do any downfield throwing. He said Timmy mostly was tossing swing passes, though he did run around a bit. That is, of course, until he got tagged by a defender. Ultimately though, this day wasn’t really about him.

It was John Brantley’s day. Urban Meyer has raved about Brantley’s performance in recent weeks, and for the most part he came through. My parents said his favorite target was Frankie Hammond, who had no trouble getting behind the reserve DBs according to my brother.

They also said that Tebow was conversing with Meyer the whole time while Brantley was playing, almost as though he was an assistant coach. That wouldn’t surprise me at all, and there’s precendent for it. Meyer made Chris Leak a big part of game planning in 2006, even letting Leak script the first 10 or 15 plays of the national title game himself.

My brother said one thing that stood out to him that few of the media reports mentioned was that there were some issues with shotgun snaps. Redshirt freshman Sam Robey is said to have won the starting center role not so much because he outplayed Maurkice Pouncey (because he didn’t), but because he played well enough to move Maurkice back to guard where the coaches want him. Robey apparently had issues with snapping it right into Tebow’s hands, but theoretically an off season’s worth of practice ought to straighten that out by the fall.

Walk on RB Christopher Scott ran hard and was productive, they said. Whether he’ll play much in the fall remains to be seen, but think about this for a second. The Gators now have a walk on who is behind three or four (depending on incoming freshman Mike Gillislee) other guys who is able to be a productive back against the defense. Compare that to the situation in 2005-06 (run it Wynnside!) and be grateful. Oh, and Chris Rainey still has the best moves on the team.

With all of the defensive starters injured or taking the day off, the offense was able to move nicely. Even so, there were still starter-caliber guys like Dorian Munroe available and playing. My guess is the backups are probably still a top-50 defense in the country, so it does at least give an indication that the offense progressed through the spring.

My parents are going to Meyer’s upcoming speaking engagement in Orlando, so if he says anything interesting I’ll pass it along.

3 Responses to Orange and Blue Game Wrapup

  1. O-town Gator says:

    I’ll be at the Orlando Gator Gathering this Saturday, and I’m anxious to hear Coach Meyer’s thoughts on the game as well as other things he may have to say.

    Even though Tebow weas limited as far as playing time goes and the starters, for the most part, didn’t see any action, it still was a good show – I’m VERY impressed with how Johnny Brantley is progressing. He was good last season in the limited playing time he saw, but he’s improving with the help of Scot Loefller (BTW, I liked the way he “coached up” Tebow and Brantley after each series).

    It was pretty much a “freshman and sophomore” show, but it also spoke volumes for Meyer’s recruiting efforts. If our bench is strong, our whole team is strong. We’re only as good as our weakest link, and we don’t want any weak links.

  2. Gatorfanatic says:

    Ok, let me see if I get this right. You didn’t go to the game and your writing a report? I was there and watched Robey as I had real concerns about this young guy taking over those duties and that’s all I’ve been reading about. Well, he took virtually every snap of the game (yes both orange and blue since we had no other healthy centers) and I thought he did an unbelievable job. He also made some great blocks down field and I only saw one high snap. For a lineman who had to be in there grinding the entire time all I can say is I was most impressed. Brady Ackerman’s wrote in an article today “the one guy that may have shown me the most is center Sam Robey” (He WAS there). Anyway, it was great to see all the young guys get the reps and Brantley is a stud.

  3. year2 says:

    I made it plain as day at the beginning that I am passing along what my family told me about the game.

    When my brother was talking about snapping issues with Robey, it wasn’t just about a high snap. It was also issues with getting it dead center on the x-axis too, with a particular option play where an off-target snap delayed an option play that ended up getting blown up.

    I have no doubt Robey will be fine. I trust the UF coaches, and if they say the kid is good, then he’s gotta be good. Just relax; it’s only spring football.

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