Some good stuff from Brantley

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About a dozen members of the media had a chance to sit down with John Brantley for about 20 minutes last Friday to talk about the start of spring football on March 17. Here is some interesting stuff from Brantley that I didn’t have a chance to write about last week:

*  Brantley said he’s really developed a strong connection with redshirt junior wide receiver Deonte Thompson, and that Thompson is having a great offseason and shining in passing drills. “He’s so fast and so explosive. And his hands have gotten a lot better. We’re going to have a lot of playmakers at wide receiver,” Brantley said. When asked which young wide receiver have caught his eye, Brantley didn’t hesitate. “I’m liking Frankie Hammond and Omarius Hines. They’re looking very well,” he said.

* Brantley said new wide receivers coach Zach Azzanni is already having a positive influence on the receivers. “He’s a great coach. He came in toward the end of practice for the Sugar Bowl and he was teaching those guys a lot. I know all the receivers respect him and listen to every word he says,” Brantley said.

* Brantley said he’s been impressed with true freshman quarterback Trey Burton, an early enrollee and Brantley’s workout partner. “He’s working hard. We work out together every day. He’s doing great. He’s working his butt off. I’m very impressed with him,” he said.

* Brantley has new roommates this semester (and for the fall) — center Sam Robey and fullback T.J. Pridemore. His roommates last season were Paul Wilson and Rick Burgess.

* Brantley said he was really pumped when Michael Pouncey told him in January that he was returning for his senior season. With Pouncey moving to center, the Gators will have a veteran starting five up front that includes Pouncey, Carl Johnson, Xavier Nixon, Marcus Gilbert and James Wilson. “It’s a great thing that (Pouncey) came back. We’re going to have such a veteran line coming back. I feel very comfortable sitting behind those five,” he said.

* Brantley said the criticism Urban Meyer and the UF coaches have been receiving over Tim Tebow’s awkward throwing motion is unwarranted. Brantley said former offensive coordinator Dan Mullen and current quarterbacks coach Scot Loeffler worked extensively with Tebow and Brantley on their mechanics. “Every day during individual periods, there was a lot of work on mechanics. Just like other coaches, they want to see us perfect our mechanics. It’s tough because coaches really can’t work with us during the offseason . It’s a critical time. Once in season, you don’t really want to change much and mess with them. That’s the really tough thing about the NCAA. You can’t work with the players in the offseason.”

* Brantley said he’s seen Tebow’s new throwing motion on tape and he likes what he sees. “He looks good. He has a much quicker release. I think either way, he’s going to be fine and have a great (NFL) career,” Brantley said.

23 COMMENTS

  1. I’m wondering the same thing Ron, especially since they moved Rainey to the slot position. I bet Brantley wouldn’t be comfortable sitting behind those five if they had just polished off a big ole bowl of chilli….hahaha.

  2. Man … it sounds as though GatorInBama was at the Chili Cook-off in Mobile this past weekend. What I think we tend to forget about Thompson was he was the fastest hs football player in the nation (ran 200m?) in his senior year. If he can be more consistent catching the ball downfield, he could have a very big year. I interested in seeing Solomon Patton on campus. Very elusive like Dexter McCluster, only faster.

  3. Somebodies got to have some ensight on Dubose, there are many of us wondering whats going on with him. Did the surgery not heal yet, I know this kid is not a bust. There is too much talent in him, is he still ailing or they just want to bring him along slowly. We have two or three weapons in that slot position, so I know we are ok there but I’m just concern about Dubose. If anyone has the scoop on this, let the Gator Nation in on it.

  4. From what I’ve heard and read about Dubose, he is running in a pool and strengthening the muscles in his hamstring area. He is supposed to be on track to practice this spring, but the lack of articles or updates has me concerned along with the rest of Gator Nation. I saw this kid at Sanford Seminole and he does bring thoughts of Percy immediately to my mind. The same way he would jab the plant foot and just explode the other direction. Hopefully, he is healed up and ready to go this year. If not, I’ll continue thinking positive and hope he is ready for the 2011 season, but it would be great if Robbie, Pat, Edward, or somebody gave us an informative update about him.

  5. First of all guys it’s Debose not Dubose. I doubt we’ll see much of him this spring as I’m sure the coaches will want to be very cautious. That will give him an additional 3+ months to get ready and to proper condition himself back to football. Will probably hear alot more over the summer about his conditioning. As for Johnny Brantley, this is a really good kid and I hope he embraces and enjoys every moment of the next 2 years and doesn’t take it all on his shoulders like Tim felt like he had to do at times. I hope all of his teammates step up and do their part. Who knows, while I wouldn’t want to put rediculous expectations on them, they might be a better “team” even if the record doesn’t match up to last year. Wouldn’t be at all surprised to see them back in the SECCG. I think they’re gonna be alot of fun to watch.

  6. First off Brantley will be much better than Tebow throwing wise. Secondly Thompson didn’t get the recognition he deserved last year and the year before that. Yea I know he drop a couple of balls last year, but does that mean don’t throw him the ball any more and belittle his confidence. If anything I would have threw the ball to him five times to every ball he dropped. Obviously, Tebow was not looking his way until the sugar bowl. We would’ve been much better with him as a third receiver that actually got the ball thrown to him. Brantley will shine brighter than Tebow because he is a real QB and HE WILL GET THE BALL INTO THE HANDS OF HIS PLAY MAKING RECEIVERS! Instead of sitting in the pocket and holding the ball for five min and there’s open PM everywhere…

  7. I agree with TampaDave here. They are going to be very cautious with him. Brantley did not reference him at all due to the fact he did not play at all last year. And I am sure that they have him on a plan for rehab that will not include some of the stuff that JB, DT, OH, FH are doing right now. I am sure that the medical staff and MM will have him ready. They will take care of him.

  8. TAMPA DAVE, as usual I agree wholeheartedly with your post. Bringing Debose along very slowly is the right thing to do, so that he will be a full go when fall practice opens. Although he hasn’t had the reps, I would have to think he has ingested the playbook during his rehabbing, and will know his assignments when he does hit the field.
    Adding to your take on JB, I think he has said all the right things about using his playmakers around him. His time to be in the spotlight has arrived and I believe he will grab it and run with it,(or throw with it). Like you, I think this team will have more balance and be a little less predictable at times, which should make for some big plays. I can’t wait to watch this team begin its journey. Hopefully, that journey gets them to Atlanta and beyond.

  9. Hey ALC I really dont think its a matter of Thompson becoming “a better
    pass catcher down field”, its a matter of THROWING the ball to him down field. He was so wide open last year (as were others) & Timmy seemed a little hesitant to deliver. Only to zero in on his faves. And even THEY were overlooked at times.
    This year Johnny B. will change all that. Look for an air attack not seen since the Ol ball coach days.
    Go Gators!

  10. Nice comments about Trey Burton. Despite what others say, the kid can play. Remember the last Gator recrit from Venice, Donnie Young. Member of the 96 championship team, made the 100 year All-Gator team. Venice kids are universally uderrated, stuck between Sarasota/Bradenton and Ft. Myers. Kinda like that Matt Porta kid nobody heard about in baseball. From Punta Gorda, also stuck between Sarasota/Bradenton and Ft. Myers.

  11. Chad – nobody boos Moody, it is “MOOOOOO” the fans say. Andre Debose had a very serious injury and a pretty complicated surgery from what I read last year – I believe it was a hamstring tear up high requiring attachment to the pelvic bone. I’d say that is a LONG recovery first and also a very good reason to bring him along slowly. Sprinting and cutting are major stessors to the hamstrings. Would love to see him play this year but would not be surprised if we don’t.

  12. I am a Gator from the Steve Spurrier era — when he played; not during his great coaching era. I am a 1967 graduate with a BS in Journalism (the school was in the stadium then.) I am still a diehard Gator fan. Please let me make a few predictions. 1. John Brantley will set all kind of records in passing. He is probably the greatest passer we ever had; considering that we had three Heisman Trophy quarterbacks that is saying a lot. 2. I think we will be a top five team this year, but considering that we have road games at FSU, Tennessee and Alabama, a BCS title is not likely. 3. Given Urban Meyer’s record in developing players, the recruiting class we just had and a more favorable home schedule in 2011, a BCS title in 2011 is a realistic shot. 4. Meyer will make Trey Burton a key third down option with five or less yards to go. 5.I think these speed receivers — Frank Hammond, Deonte Thompson, Amarilus Hines — will develop into a great bunch.

    By Ray Cohn