Gators’ offensive line still under construction

Florida offensive lineman Nick Villano, left, and defensive lineman Elijah Conliffe practice. [Cyndi Chambers/Gainesville Sun Correspondent] 2018

UF football coach Dan Mullen complimented the offensive line Wednesday. Well, sort of.

“I’m not upset where our (starting) offensive line is in their stage of development,” he said. “Obviously, we have a ways to go. They are not by any means the dominant unit in the country, but they are coming along and improving.”

Mullen said the big concern is what’s going on behind the starters.

“We really need the twos to come along much faster,” he said. “It’s the depth there that I’m worried about — the acceleration of the next group of guys being ready to get on the field and not skipping a beat. That’s where I wish we were a little bit further along.”

The most wide-open spot on the line is at center, where 2017 starter T.J. McCoy is battling former guard Nick Buchanan and others for the starting role.

“We are rotating guys through,” Mullen said. “I don’t know that anybody (has emerged as the leader). But we also play a bunch of guys there because that’s hard. If you don’t have a center, it makes life really hard because you can’t even snap the ball.

“That’s a pretty wide-open competition at that spot.”


  1. The reason I’m not making a comment here is because this info was lifted directly from the video available elsewhere on the site, and I made a comment in response to it. I don’t want to repeat myself, know what I mean? I don’t want to repeat myself. If you want to know what I said there, then shift yourself over there and find out. Otherwise, mind your own business.

  2. I know we are experienced here but these guys may not ever be as good as we will be at offensive line in a few years.part of good about play is being effective without the great wall of Florida blocking for you. I say this may be an impediment to this program achieving a top ten ranking this year. maybe not

  3. In order to really be good we have to have 2 full offensive lines ready to go. The 1’s will get worn down during long drives (wishful thinking here – long drives). If we can get the 2’s trained up quickly to at least be a serviceable unit we could be a force on offense. We’ll be good on D. But most importantly, we’ll have a man with a brain on the sidelines and the people working with him aren’t a gaggle of incompetent boobs.

  4. Leland….Leland…..Come in Leland….

    I had a dream last night, that like Leo Durocher and the old St Louis Browns, Mullen put in a midget at running back since the OL wasn’t performing against Charleston Southern. Damned if he didn’t gain over 100 yards and two touchdowns before somebody broke him.

    Should I be worried, or was this just an LSD flashback from the 60’s?

    • G-6–No, no, don’t worry. The kind of fitfulness you’re talking about results from reading too much of Dooley’s prose. It helps to sit in a straight-backed chair and put your head between your knees for two or three minutes before you go to bed. Good luck! Let me know.

      • Well, good question. I was stationed here from 1997 to 2003 when I retired, but had some inside information that K was going to open a store here the next year. So I thought, “Nice place, nice weather, nice people, and low cost of living….that’ll be the icing on the cake!”. And it was, too….the best years of my otherwise low class life. The Gators were on fire for a lot of it, I was having fun making soldiers out of medical residents, none of whom really appreciated it, but it was fun anyway, and best of all I could go to K any time I wanted to and usually did even tho I had to put up with the constant refrain from the otherwise lovely Gator-3, “Ick, ick, ick….you’re a piggy wig”. And then, about the same time as Urban Myer left, and with the advent of Muschamp, the bottom fell out. They closed. And the Gators began their journey thru the wilderness. And then, suddenly, there was nothing left to live for until Dan Mullen came. But alas, still no K and now I’m too old to move and have grandkids here anyway.

        Yup, that’s my shameful story. Pretty sad, ain’t it?

        • 6 I hope there is a big Gator flag flying out there. Maybe when one of the mapping satellites (google, etc not NSA)passes over they’ll pick it up and as Gator Nation returns to its rightful place K’s will right the wrong and return.

        • G-6–Not shameful and not sad. Good things happen, bad things happen. What matters is how you look at it. You know that, of course, and you seem to be doing alright. Even without K’s. Mullen is going to turn things around shortly, and about K’s, why don’t we start a campaign of some sort or other to make K. Corp come to their senses and re-open in your town? Get in touch with TampaGator–see if he wants to help.

          Do you have okra in your town and grits?

          • Oh yes, we’ve got okra coming out of our 6, if you’ll pardon the phrase, and while Toddle House doesn’t come this far west, oh baby do we have grits. We even have grits & shrimp. Low sodium, of course, since my personal 12 year old physician, aka Howdy Doody, insists on it. But since he gives me a wink and a nod on the occasional cigar, I follow orders. Just wish he’d let me bum some Copenhagen from him once in a while, he’s a selfish little critter about that.