Harvin, Spikes still uncertain for opener


Published: Tuesday, August 26, 2008 at 11:55 p.m.
Last Modified: Tuesday, August 26, 2008 at 11:55 p.m.

With four days left until Florida's season opener against Hawaii, the injury bug is still lurking around UF's practices.

"Bloody Tuesday" as UF coach Urban Meyer likes to call his toughest practice of the week ended with uncertainty on the statuses of juniors Percy Harvin (heel) and Brandon Spikes (foot) for Saturday's game.

Meyer said Tuesday that Harvin practiced with the team and participated in seven-on-seven drills, but is still questionable for this weekend.

"I think you know our stance around here," Meyer said about Harvin's status. "You've gotta be ready to play. If he's ready to play, he'll play."

The news on Spikes wasn't so assuring.

Meyer said Spikes was kept out of practice again and he's unsure how long he'll be sidelined.

If Spikes is unable to go Saturday, Meyer said redshirt junior Ryan Stamper would fill in for him. He said he could also use junior Dustin Doe there if needed.

The Gators also had a couple more offensive players sit out Tuesday's practice.

Redshirt freshman quarterback John Brantley is recovering from a staph infection on his arm. Meyer said it isn't serious and he expects Brantley back today.

"I think it's under control and he'll practice tomorrow," he said. "He's gotta go tomorrow."

Junior college transfer wide receiver Carl Moore is also battling through a staph infection, but Meyer said he should be back soon.

Two offensive linemen also suffered setbacks as redshirt sophomores Corey Hobbs and Maurice Hurt were sidelined.

Meyer said Hobbs injured his neck Monday and is in a neck brace. He was not hospitalized, but the severity of the injury is unknown. Hurt suffered a stinger in his shoulder.

MARSH READY

After a couple unproductive years at UF, Lawrence Marsh is finally making a name for himself on the defensive line.

Coming in as a defensive end, Marsh will now start for the Gators at nose tackle Saturday.

"I was very excited," the redshirt sophomore said of his reaction when he found out he was starting. "You think you're going to start, but you don't really know sometimes. Your play just takes care of it and if you just keep making plays during practice and keep working hard and the coaches start believing in you, then you know you're going to start. When I was getting the coaches believing in me, I felt like I was good to go."

Meyer's been pleased with Marsh's production all camp, but he tried not to pump up his rising star too much Tuesday.

"I gotta be careful because I usually pump guys up too much and they break our hearts," Meyer said of Marsh. "He's really worked hard. If I can get him to shave he'll be much better. He's had a great camp."

WILLIAMS BEHIND

A year removed from a devastating ACL tear that ended his sophomore season, running back Mon Williams is struggling to move up the depth chart.

Meyer cited injuries as the main reason he's yet to gain ground on the other backs.

"He sprained his ankle the other day and he's a battler," he said. "He's not with those other (running backs) right now. He's a little bit behind them. He can't get off the injury list. I think he's not that far behind. I just think the other guys are more consistent."

ETC.

Meyer said sophomore offensive lineman Maurkice Pouncey practiced Tuesday after suffering a sprained ankle a few days ago. Freshman defensive lineman Matt Patchan (peck) practiced full speed, Meyer said. Meyer said that he expects to have a perfect graduation rate from his seniors and grad students as all 13 will graduate this year.

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