Make us your home page

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Florida Gators adjusting to indoor conditions of Superdome

NEW ORLEANS — Florida's preparations for tonight's Sugar Bowl the past several days have included adjusting to the subtle changes they expect to encounter playing in the Superdome.

"Adjusting to the lights," coach Will Muschamp said. "We've worked it all week, as far as seeing the punt catchers and kickoff and receivers working and catching the football. Because it's a little different with the lights in the stadium there. We've worked on that. And the kicking environment for (Caleb) Sturgis is good for us. We can probably be at the 38-yard-line and be in range for a 55-yard, 56-yarder, maybe 40."

Sophomore P Kyle Christy said he believes the dome will be an advantage for him.

"There's no wind, it's perfect conditions," Christy said. "You couldn't ask for anything better than that. It's a cool atmosphere, and the dome is really cool."

CELEBRITY COIN TOSS: Former quarterback and Heisman Trophy winner Danny Wuerffel and former running back great Emmitt Smith will represent the Gators in tonight's coin toss. Former linebacker and ESPN NFL analyst Tom Jackson and former boxing great Muhammad Ali will represent Louisville, and the four will join the current team captains on the field for the opening toss.

MEMORIES, OLD AND NEW: Louisville coach Charlie Strong said he hadn't given it much thought until Tuesday, but he suspects he will be a little nostalgic, albeit briefly, before tonight's game. Strong is a former Florida defensive coordinator who recruited several of the current Gators.

"I guess it really hasn't hit me yet, I haven't seen many of the (UF) players," Strong said. "So probably when I walk into the stadium for the first time (tonight) and look across the sideline, you see a lot of those players you were able to recruit. Then it kind of hits you. Once you hear the band rev up and play the different songs that you're so familiar with, and we had a function last night and I saw a lot of the (UF) administrators. So it will be something special. … But I've got to get refocused and get my team going also."

PERSONNEL UPDATE: Look for Marcus Roberson to return punts for UF, while Loucheiz Purifoy and Andre Debose will return kicks.

Florida Gators adjusting to indoor conditions of Superdome 01/01/13 [Last modified: Tuesday, January 1, 2013 8:20pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. For starters: Rays at Twins, looking for another with Odorizzi starting


    UPDATE, 12:45: Cash said Robertson was taking better swings Friday and so he wanted to move him up today, liking the idea of having three straight right-handers vs. a LHP they don't know much about. ... Souza was still smiling this morning about his failed dive attempt last night, and the reaction it got. .. The …

  2. Why the Lightning would consider trading Jonathan Drouin

    Lightning Strikes

    TAMPA — This summer, the Lightning could trade one of its most dynamic young players ever.

    Tampa Bay Lightning left wing Jonathan Drouin (27) celebrates with his team on the bench after beating Chicago Blackhawks goalie Scott Darling (33) to score his second goal of the period and to tie the score at 4 to 4 during second period action at the Amalie Arena in Tampa Monday evening (03/27/17).
  3. Why the Lightning should keep Jonathan Drouin

    Lightning Strikes

    Keep him.

    Jonathan Drouin is live bait. The Lightning is ready to run the hook through him and cast him out there again. Drouin has enough talent for the Lightning to meet some defensive needs in a deal.

    Keep him.

    Lightning wing Jonathan Drouin celebrates after beating Los Angeles Kings goalie Peter Budaj during the first period of Tuesday's win in Tampa. [DOUGLAS R. CLIFFORD   |   Times]
  4. This Tampa Bay Lightning wing rides the newest wave of fan interaction

    Lightning Strikes

    TAMPA — There are photos of Lightning fan Shaun Egger as a toddler at center ice at the then-Thunderome, aka Tropicana Field. He's played in the Lightning's high school hockey league for Palm Harbor University. But his closest personal encounter with players had been waving through a crowd after a training camp …

    Tampa Bay Lightning player J.T. Brown wears his anti UV glasses as he talks over the headset with a hockey fan while they play against each other on line in an XBOX NHL video game in Brown's game room at his home in south Tampa. The fan chose to be the Washington Capitals and Brown, of course, was the Tampa Bay Lightning. Brown interacts with fans through video game systems as he streams the games live on Twitch with plans for the proceeds to go to charity.
  5. ‘Biggest fight' behind her, Petra Kvitova returns ahead of schedule


    PARIS — Five months after a home invader's knife sliced into her left hand, Petra Kvitova will return to competitive tennis at the French Open, a last-minute decision to make her comeback earlier than expected.

    Petra Kvitova adjusts her hair during a news conference at Roland Garros Stadium, where she will make her tennis return at the French Open. Kvitova's left hand was badly injured by a knife-wielding intruder in December; she has recovered ahead of schedule. [Associated Press]