Appeal Denied, Defensive Tackle Dante Phillips Commits To Tennessee

After Dante Phillips was told he wouldn’t be able to enroll at the University of Florida, he tried again. After his appeal was denied and it became painfully clear he wasn’t going to play college football for the Florida Gators, he looked elsewhere. That elsewhere became clear this week. Phillips has committed to play for one of Florida’s fiercest rivals – the Tennessee Volunteers.

Phillips had also looked at Miami after he was told Florida wasn’t a possibility. In the end, his desire to stay in the SEC and “show Florida what they missed out on” may have won out. The Gators will see plenty of him in the future…in the wrong orange.

Florida Gators Video Of The Day: Tim Tebow And Eric Berry Collision

The Gators Video of the Day (GVOD) features, you guessed it, videos relating to the Florida Gators. They could be Gators athletes or homemade videos made by fans like ourselves. If you have any suggestions for GVOD, email me at evandagator@gmail.com or TBG at onegameback@gmail.com. We will try our best to live up to the “of the day” part of the title.

Superman against Superman. The Offensive Player of the Year vs. the Defensive Player of the Year. Florida vs. Tennessee. That’s what many thought when they saw the Florida quarterback Tim Tebow and Eric Berry collision.

Many Gators fans say this play was their favorite of Tebow’s career. To you, what was so great about Tebow’s and Berry’s collision? Was it the caliber of the two players who would become Heisman candidates? Or was it just the sheer force and momentum that both players had at the moment of collision?

Dante Phillips Denied Admission To Florida; Defensive Tackle Looking Elsewhere

Four-star defensive tackle Dante Phillips has been denied admission to Florida. The Venice, FL (Venice) DT was cleared academically by the NCAA, but not by the University of Florida. He has been informed that he will not be allowed to enroll and subsequently won’t play for the Florida Gators.

Although there’s a small chance Phillips could still end up at Florida (the path would probably mean heading somewhere to improve his grades before joining the Gators for the 2013 season), that seems extremely unlikely at this point. Miami has reached out to the defensive tackle, but he has mentioned his preference to play in the SEC.

“Florida is a great program; I love the school, but it’s time to open my recruitment. I’m just ready to play football. I want to show Florida what they missed out on. I’d like to go to a school in the SEC. That’s my preference.” – Dante Phillips, 2012 Defensive Tackle

While similar situations have occurred in the past, they aren’t as frequent this late in the game. The deadline to enroll for Summer B classes is Tuesday at 11:59pm.

One high profile similarity was Frostproof, FL (Frostproof) running back Travis Henry. It was rumored that Florida was Henry’s first choice, but he wouldn’t be able to qualify academically. He was cleared by the NCAA however and spent four seasons in the Tennessee backfield. The difference, of course, is that Henry wasn’t a Florida signee.

At this point, Florida doesn’t replace Phillips (the 2012 class has long been signed); they simply move on without him. Junior college transfer Damien Jacobs becomes the only defensive tackle to join the Gators as part of the class.

2013 Basketball Recruiting: Florida Gators Watching Schuyler Rimmer

Billy Donovan, Matt McCall and the Florida Gators are keeping an eye on 2013 power forward Schuyler Rimmer. Although the Gators have yet to offer a scholarship to the Orlando, FL (Boone) forward, one could come in time.

Depending on where you look, Rimmer is anywhere between 6’8″ and 6’10” and weighs in at about 230 pounds. He’ll look to add strength before heading off to college, without losing speed and the ability to get open away from the rim. The Gators see Rimmer as someone that could fit into Erik Murphy’s role in the future. He’ll need to work on his outside shot, but with time could fill that role well.

Rimmer has talked with McCall many times, but only recently got a chance to have a long conversation with Donovan. He was impressed with Donovan’s honesty and felt comfortable with the head coach’s projection for him. With Damontre Harris and Dorian Finney-Smith becoming eligible to play in the 2013-14 season, it’s unlikely Rimmer would see much time as a freshman. That’s alright with the recruit though; he’d like to find a program to grow in.

A three-star prospect, Rimmer will look to improve his stock during the AAU season and then his senior year. He currently holds a number of offers including ones from Miami, Penn State and Tennessee. Rimmer has spoken favorably of the Vols ($), but hasn’t rule anyone out regardless of whether he has received on offer or not. He hopes to get to Gainesville for an unofficial visit sometime this summer.

Florida Gators Video Of The Day: Danny Wuerffel Tribute

The Gators Video of the Day (GVOD) features, you guessed it, videos relating to the Florida Gators. They could be Gators athletes or homemade videos made by fans like ourselves. If you have any suggestions for GVOD, email me at evandagator@gmail.com or TBG at onegameback@gmail.com. We will try our best to live up to the “of the day” part of the title.

Many of you miss “Danny” as you call him. You watched Danny Wuerffel lead the Florida Gators to a National Championship, and you also saw him win a Heisman. Some of your best memories come from his duelings with Peyton Manning and Tennessee. The Wuerffel era was one of the best sports times of your life.

But for me and many others who where born in the 1990s and were simply too young to efficiently follow the Gators at the time, we missed the era. Instead, we grew up in the Tim Tebow and Urban Meyer era. As I wrote this post up, I couldn’t even spell “Wuerffel” correctly. I’d like to blame this mistake on the generation gap.

Of course, it is always great to look back at the players who made it great to watch and somewhat built up Gators sports. One of those players was Danny Wuerffel. Even though I didn’t grow up watching him, through a quick highlight tape or by watching one of his games, I can tell that he was great.

Wuerffel was truly one of the greatest Gators ever. What were some of your best “Danny” memories? Other 90s memories? What made him so special as a player?

2013 Football Recruiting: Athlete Derrick Henry No Longer Committed To Georgia Bulldogs

During the 2012 recruiting cycle, an athlete from the 2013 class jumped to the top of many wish lists. While programs focused on putting together their 2012 classes, they couldn’t help but notice Yulee, FL (Yulee) athlete Derrick Henry. One of the nation’s best in his class, Henry was a want of nearly every major program in the nation. Among those were the Florida Gators.

With a need a running back, wide receiver, and virtually every other position Henry could conceivably play, the Gators kept an eye on Henry. There was even a time when Florida was considered the leader. But not long after that news began to surface, Henry pulled the trigger and committed to Georgia. After 11 months and numerous other visits, Henry is a free agent again. On Wednesday, the athlete announced he was no longer committed to the Bulldogs.

The news comes after a weekend Henry spent at Alabama – considered to be among his favorites. Also on that list is another SEC program, Tennessee. It seems more and more likely that Henry will end up in the Southeastern Conference, but Georgia may now be a long shot.

As for Florida? Well, the Gators could be as well. Since Henry’s commitment to the Bulldogs, the Gators have added Adam Lane and Kelvin Taylor. Although Henry has also been mentioned as a possible receiver or defensive back, Florida has added numbers at those positions as well. They could always use more, but a lot of time has passed with Henry.

The coaching staff may test the waters and see where Henry’s mind is now that he is no longer committed to Georgia, but nearly one year after being rumored as the leader for him, Florida has an uphill battle if they want to join in the fight again.

Gators Brian Johnson Named SEC Player Of The Week

Being a good pitcher and being reliable at the plate has its advantages. For the Florida Gators Brian Johnson, it meant being named SEC Player of the Week. Johnson was a key member of a Florida squad that beat No. 1 Florida State and took two of three from conference rival Tennessee.

Johnson had a great all-around week, both batting and on the mound. He went 8-for-17 and led the Gators with seven RBI as they went 3-1 and moved back into the top five of the Baseball America Top 25 while reclaiming the top spot in the USA Today/ESPN Coaces’ Poll.

In the final game of the week – a 8-1 win over Tennessee – Johnson pitched six innings, got the win to improve to 5-1, and drove in what would end up being the winning run.

This is the first time Johnson has received the honor.

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Baseball Recap: Florida 8 – Tennessee 1; Gators Rebound To Take Series

The No. 7 Florida Gators baseball team rebounded from Saturday’s loss to defeat the Tennessee Volunteers 8-1 on Sunday. Six Gators pitchers combined to hold the Vols to the one run and only seven hits. Florida pushed their record to 28-8 (9-6 SEC) with the win.

Brian Johnson, Greg Larson, Daniel Gibson, Ryan Harris, Bobby Poyner and Keenan Kish were the six that shut down the Vols. Johnson started and pitched six solid innings to improve his record to 5-1. In addition to his success on the mound, Johnson helped the Gators at the plate. He doubled in the top of the first inning, driving in three runs, including what would be the game winner.

Florida got multiple hits from shortstop Nolan Fontana, right fielder Preston Tucker and first baseman Vickash Ramjit. Ramjit led off the second inning with his fourth homerun of the season.

The Gators return home on Tuesday against Georgia Southern. The game will be the first in a nine-game homestand.

Baseball previews and recaps are sponsored by Ben Versnik and Advocare – a world-class nutrition company specializing in health and wellness, weight management, vibrant energy and sports performance.

Baseball Recap: Tennessee 5 – Florida 4; Vols Even Series At 1-1

For the second game in a row, generating runs wasn’t easy for the No. 7 Florida Gators baseball team. In game one against the Tennessee Volunteers, three runs was enough. In game two, four wasn’t. Tennessee evened the series at one game a piece with a 5-4 victory on Saturday.

The Vols actually had one less hit than they had on Friday night (eight compared to nine), but their run production was more efficient this time around. Tennessee led 4-3 after three innings then held on for the victory. The win improved the Vols record to 21-14 (7-7 SEC) while the loss dropped the Gators to 27-8 (8-6).

Karsten Whiston started for the Gators and despite leaving with a deficit, ended with a no-decision. Whiston allowed four runs (three earned) over three innings of work. Johnny Magliozzi only allowed one run over five innings of relief, but was credited with the loss. Magliozzi is 4-1 this season.

Coming off of a 4-for-4 performance on Friday, shortstop Nolan Fontana had a box score to remember. Fontana was credit with only one at-bat, but four walks. Unfortunately, he wasn’t able to score during the game.

The Gators and Vols do it one more time on Sunday at 2:00pm.

Baseball previews and recaps are sponsored by Ben Versnik and Advocare – a world-class nutrition company specializing in health and wellness, weight management, vibrant energy and sports performance.

Baseball Recap: Florida 3 – Tennessee 1; Gators Take Game Over Vols

On Friday night, the No. 7 Florida Gators baseball team defeated the Tennessee Volunteers 3-2 in Knoxville, TN. The win marked the second in a row for the Gators and may have provided the team with a boost as they look to put that past stumble behind them. Florida improves to 27-7 (8-5 SEC) while Tennessee falls to 20-14 (6-7 SEC).

The Gators were led by shortstop Nolan Fontana who went 4-for-4 with two doubles, a run scored and an RBI. Second baseman Casey Turgeon and catcher Mike Zunino also scored runs and Zunino and designated hitter/first baseman Brian Johnson also had RBI.

The real treat was the pitching as three Florida pitchers combined to only allow one run despite nine hits from Tennessee. Starter Jonathon Crawford pitched five strong innings to get the win to improve to 4-1. Austin Maddox closed out the Vols for his tenth save.

The Gators face their SEC rival again on Saturday at 3:00pm. The game can be seen on Fox Sports Florida.

Baseball previews and recaps are sponsored by Ben Versnik and Advocare – a world-class nutrition company specializing in health and wellness, weight management, vibrant energy and sports performance.