Six Gators on AP All-SEC team

Florida punter Johnny Townsend gets emotional singing the Gator fight song after the FSU game Nov. 25 at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium. This was Townsend's final game as a Gator. [Cyndi Chambers/Correspondent]

Florida’s difficult, losing football season is reflected in The Associated Press All-SEC team that was released Monday.

Senior punter Johnny Townsend is the only Gator on the first team. Five are on the second team — offensive tackle Martez Ivey, cornerback C.J. Henderson, place-kicker Eddy Pineiro, defensive tackle Taven Bryan and cornerback Duke Dawson.

Townsend was probably the Gators’ most valuable player this season, averaging 47.5 yards a punt and consistently flipping field position in UF’s favor. He holds the school record for most career punts.

The other half of UF’s kicking game also had a productive 2017 season. Pineiro, a junior, was perfect on the season after missing a field-goal attempt in the opener against Michigan. He made 17 of 18 attempts. He also excelled on kickoffs, having 39 go for touchbacks.

Henderson, a true freshman, turned out to be one of the Gators’ biggest playmakers on defense. He tied for the team lead in interceptions with four, two of which he returned for touchdowns.

Bryan, a junior who likely will declare for the NFL draft, was dominant in the middle of the UF defensive line. He had six tackles for losses and 4.0 sacks.

Dawson, who elected to return for his senior season rather than enter the draft a year ago, recorded four interceptions and was second on the team in pass breakups with nine.

In the AP individual awards, Auburn running back Kerryon Johnson is the offensive player of the year, Georgia linebacker Roquan Smith is the defensive player of the year and Georgia’s Kirby Smart is the coach of the year. There are two newcomers of the year — Auburn quarterback Jarrett Stidham and Georgia quarterback Jake Fromm.

The AP team is voted on by members of the media. The coaches’ All-SEC team is coming out later this week.


  1. sarcasm and mean spirit are what has got us in this hole! I’ve been a gator all my life. win or loose i stay to the end of every game. we r the 12th man and we need to recruit us. empty seats, quitters, haters how about some gators!!!!!! in all kinds of weather we are the team! we make a difference by being there bringing the noise. quit the bs! if you can’t play better yourself shut up and support the team!!! we will always have some bad bumps in sports!