UF's Driskel doubtful for Saturday
Published: Monday, November 12, 2012 at 12:54 p.m.
Last Modified: Monday, November 12, 2012 at 3:25 p.m.
Florida quarterback Jeff Driskel is in a walking boot with a sprained ankle and is doubtful for Saturday's Senior Day game against Jacksonville State, UF coach Will Muschamp said Monday.
“(He's) probably doubtful for this weekend based on the information I have today,” Muschamp said. “We'll try to get him on the field Wednesday. If he can't go by then, certainly we'll go with Jacoby (Brissett). We have all the confidence in the world Jacoby will play well.”
Driskel sprained his ankle in the third quarter of Saturday's game against Louisiana-Lafayette and did not return. Brissett, a fellow true sophomore, came off the bench and helped the No. 7 Gators rally for a 27-20 victory. Brissett threw the tying touchdown pass to wide receiver Quinton Dunbar with only 1:42 left in the game.
Driskel's right ankle will be re-evaluated on a daily basis.
“We're going to continue to work through the week and see if he can do anything,” Muschamp said. “If he can, great. If he can't, we'll move forward. Man down, man up.
“We'll see how the swelling goes on the ankle and see where it goes. Some guys recover quicker than others. Based on what (trainer) Anthony Pass and I talked about this morning, I feel like we'll see Wednesday what he can do or if he can do anything.”
Dating back to last spring, Driskel and Brissett were basically in a dead heat for the starting role before Driskel edged ahead in the season opener against Bowling Green and was named the starter the following week.
Although he had played only a handful of plays going into last Saturday's game, Brissett appeared ready when his number was called in the second half. He just missed on a deep pass to wide receiver Frankie Hammond Jr. and connected with tight end Jordan Reed for a 39-yard completion that set up the late tying touchdown pass.
“You never know when your number is going to be called,” Muschamp said. “There's no question, I think it's a great example for us all. When your number is called, you better hurry up and perform and perform well.
“We always talk about man down, man up. In that situation, you've got to man up and play. I'm certainly very proud of his effort and what he did when he went into the game.”
Muschamp said it isn't just the performance off the bench Saturday that gives him confidence in Brissett.
“I've seen over a year-and-a-half that we've been together,” Muschamp said. “He's a guy who has prepared himself well, is very talented. He's going to have the opportunity to make good choices and decisions on the field, which he'll do.
“I've got a lot of confidence in him. I don't think it's just any one day that you say this gives you confidence. I think it's over a period of time that builds confidence with him.”
Brissett and Driskel have similar skill sets, although Driskel is more mobile and slightly faster, and more of a threat to run.
Hammond said he doesn't anticipate any major changes in the offense if Brissett starts Saturday's game.
“Not a thing,” Hammond said. ‘Driskel is more of a mobile guy. He can get out of the pocket a little faster. But I don't think that will close anything as far as our offense is concerned. Jacoby does just as good a job as Driskel does.”
If Brissett is the guy, it's doubtful there will be as many designed quarterback runs in the game plan.
“Obviously, that will change a little bit,” Muschamp said. “Jeff has a little more penchant for that. But we'll run what we run and (be) who we are.”
Driskel is one of several injured players UF will monitor this week.
Muschamp said wide receiver/return man Andre Debose (knee) and outside linebacker Neiron Ball (ankle) are doubtful for Saturday's game. Safety Valdez Showers (shoulder), offensive guard Ian Silberman (shoulder) and safety Pop Saunders (knee) will be re-evaluated on Wednesday.
Offensive guard James Wilson (ankle), offensive tackle Xavier Nixon (knee) and tailback Mack Brown (ankle) are expected to return to practice today, Muschamp said.
Contact Robbie Andreu at 352-374-5022 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Also check out Andreu's blog at Gatorsports.com.
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