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Florida Gators coach Urban Meyer plans to tweak offense before facing Penn State

GAINESVILLE — If you're curious about what type of offense Florida will run against Penn State in the Outback Bowl on Jan. 1, so is Urban Meyer.

The UF coach said Monday that the team will spend significant practice time figuring out what's best. Whether that will include the three-quarterback system used in the latter half of the season remains to be seen.

"These next two weeks are critical," Meyer said. "I can't tell you on this day what we'll do in this bowl game. … We're going to do the best we can to move the ball against a fine defense. And at this point, I don't know what that is. But that's what we're going to be working on."

Florida had a light practice Monday and will practice three more times this week. Next week's schedule is not set because of final exams.

Meyer plans a full week of practice in Tampa leading up to the game.

Ultimately, expect changes.

"We're going to try," Meyer said. "It doesn't matter what offense you run if you lay the ball on the ground or throw picks. But I think you'll see some (changes). Any time you have time like when we had the bye week, you're going to see something (different).

"We're going to do the best we can to move the ball against traditionally one of the great defenses in America. But you'll certainly see some changes."

A father's perspective: Along with a victory over American University on Sunday, men's basketball coach Billy Donovan had another good reason to enjoy the trip to Washington, D.C. He got to see his son William, who is a freshman basketball player at Catholic University.

"He's doing really, really well," Donovan said as the Gators prepared for the trip. "It's just amazing he's already in college. He's really happy. He's really enjoying it there."

As a coach, Donovan has had to counsel many players who struggle with waiting for playing time. Now that he has a son whose minutes are limited, he sees it from a different perspective.

"I can tell everybody now, 'I've got one going through the same thing,' " Donovan said. "He understands, which is good, that he's got a couple of guys in front of him who are older than him, who are seniors. His job, his responsibility this season is going to be as the backup. … Hopefully his time will come where maybe he plays a little bit more. But right now he needs to figure out what he's got to do to help their team."

Staying or going?: It's difficult to stem the talk about whether offensive coordinator Steve Addazio will return next season, but Meyer's emphatic endorsement has toned down a bit since last month.

Asked if Addazio will be the offensive coordinator next season, Meyer responded: "Uh, I am expecting that to happen. I'll have further updates as we get closer to the bowl game. Like I said, everybody's out recruiting and doing their business."

Graduate assistant Tony Weaver will help with the defensive line on an interim basis until Meyer replaces Dan McCarney, the new North Texas coach. Meyer said he can't say for sure what staff changes might occur because "there's so much going on in our profession." That might indicate some members of his staff will have other offers to consider.

Injury update: RB Jeff Demps is in a protective boot and has not practiced since the Florida State game. QB Jordan Reed (concussion) should be able to play but has not practiced. DT Terron Sanders had arthroscopic surgery on his shoulder, and DT Lawrence Marsh had surgery to repair a torn labrum in his hip.

All-SEC: The Associated Press named its All-SEC teams, and four Gators made the list. Junior CB Janoris Jenkins, senior S Ahmad Black and senior P Chas Henry were first-team selections, and senior C Mike Pouncey was on the second team. Auburn claimed the top three honors: QB Cam Newton, offensive player of the year; DT Nick Fairley, defensive player of the year; Gene Chizik, coach of the year. South Carolina RB Marcus Lattimore was freshman of the year.

Information from Times wires was used in this report. Antonya English can be reached at

Florida Gators coach Urban Meyer plans to tweak offense before facing Penn State 12/06/10 [Last modified: Monday, December 6, 2010 8:58pm]
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