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)

UF guessing game at QB

 Quarterback Feleipe Franks (13)  warms up before the Orange and Blue Debut at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium in Gainesville, Fla.


Quarterback Feleipe Franks (13) warms up before the Orange and Blue Debut at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium in Gainesville, Fla.

GAINESVILLE — The question about his team's most prominent position was asked directly and indirectly. It was nuanced and framed in myriad fashions.

Jim McElwain, quarterback in a previous life, sidestepped all of it at his Monday news conference.

Five days before the No. 17 Gators face No. 11 Michigan in arguably their biggest season opener ever, he's simply not saying who will start behind center.

"The quarterback situation, we have a plan that's in place," McElwain said. "I'm not going to tell you what it is, so there's no reason to ask, but we're excited about that. We'll leave that for them to guess as well."

The answer was in partial response to the Wolverines, who still haven't even released a legitimate roster As if to add intrigue, McElwain jokingly suggested (at least we think he was joking) the battle for the right to take the first snap may extend to four guys.

Don't be totally floored if Luke Del Rio, Feleipe Franks and Malik Zaire all remained sidelined the first play.

"I'm going to let you in on a hint: We're going to open up in wildcat with (freshman) Kadarius Toney there, all right?" McElwain said. "There you go. There's your starter."

Robinson out: McElwain confirmed WR James Robinson, cited recently with LB Ventrell Miller for marijuana possession, is suspended for Saturday's contest. Miller is among seven Gators players who already had been suspended for the game. Robinson, a four-star recruit from Lakeland, was previously cited on a complaint of marijuana possession during his official visit to Ohio State on the weekend before signing day.

"Well, it's always disappointing. That's part of growing up …" McElwain said. "Yet, like I said, I'm not giving up on him."

Injury updates: McElwain said DB C.J. McWilliams (hamstring) remains out while TE Kemore Gamble (foot) is questionable.

He called LB Kylan Johnson (hamstring) "iffy," but may have been erring on the side of caution.

"He's a guy we need to have," McElwain said. "But he went through practice on Friday, some of the individual stuff and some of the walk-through stuff. We're looking to see how that goes today but we're expecting him to be able to play."

Seminole x2: Two of the local receivers on No. 3 Florida State's depth chart against No. 1 Alabama were obvious: Wharton High alumnus Auden Tate and former five-star recruit George Campbell (East Lake High). But Tampa Catholic product Justin Motlow was on there, too, backing up Nyqwan Murray. The 5-foot-11, 183-pound redshirt junior was on the scout team last year and contributed twice on special teams in 2015. Motlow is also believed to be the first member of the Seminole Tribe of Florida to play for FSU's Seminoles.

Thomas back: FSU's defense was set to get a boost with the likely return of LB Matthew Thomas. The former five-star recruit had been out with an illness and other unspecified issues, but coach Jimbo Fisher said he expected Thomas back at practice Monday. Thomas started 12 games last season and led the team with 77 tackles.

Audibles: "He obviously felt that they needed to do some things to become relevant. That was his choice in doing it. It's probably not something I'd do. That's all right." — McElwain, on Jim Harbaugh's attempts to make Michigan relevant again

"Been fun to watch him play. Ain't going to be fun this weekend. That guy's too daggum good." — FSU coach Jimbo Fisher on Alabama DB Minkah Fitzpatrick

Saturday's games

FSU vs. Alabama, at Mercedes-Benz Stadium, Atlanta; 8:14 p.m. TV: ABC

Michigan vs. Florida, at AT&T Stadium, Arlington, Texas; 3:30 p.m. TV: ABC

Stony Brook at USF, 4 p.m.

UF guessing game at QB 08/28/17 [Last modified: Monday, August 28, 2017 9:39pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Dirk Koetter to Bucs: Take your complaints to someone who can help


    TAMPA — It was just another day of aching bellies at One Save Face.

    Dirk Koetter: “All of our issues are self-inflicted right now.”
  2. Bucs journal: Few complaints about Jameis Winston's play


    TAMPA — It wasn't enough to pull out a win Sunday at Buffalo, but a week removed from a shoulder sprain, Bucs quarterback Jameis Winston threw for 384 yards and three touchdowns against the NFL's No. 2 pass defense.

    Tampa Bay Buccaneers cornerback Brent Grimes (24) signs autographs for fans before an NFL game between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Minnesota Vikings at U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis, Minn., on Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017.
  3. Lightning's Jon Cooper uses unusual tactic to create mismatches

    Lightning Strikes

    TAMPA — Tyler Johnson is about to swing his left leg over the boards for his next shift alongside linemate Alex Killorn and … who else?

    Stamkos? Kucherov? Point?

    Tampa Bay Lightning head coach Jon Cooper argues the called as his team gets a faceoff violation, leading to penalty and #Caps PP goal, during second period action at the Amalie Arena in Tampa Monday evening (10/09/17).DIRK SHADD   |   Times
  4. A buzz-worthy look at the Astros-Dodgers World Series matchup

    The Heater

    Houston Astros' Yuli Gurriel is congratulated by Jose Altuve after scoring during the fifth inning of Game 7 of baseball's American League Championship Series against the New York Yankees Saturday, Oct. 21, 2017, in Houston. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip) TXMG170
  5. Florida, FSU try to ignore death threats, angry fans


    GAINESVILLE — Frustration over uncharacteristically down seasons at Florida and Florida State has started to spill over from message boards and start crossing real-world lines.

    Fans watch the Florida Gators game against Texas A&M, at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium, in Gainesville, Fla. At the half, Florida was up 10 to 3.