Starting defensive end Jabari Zuniga’s sprained ankle had healed enough that he could have played against Auburn, but the coaching staff held him out with the expectation he would be 100 percent for Saturday’s game at LSU.
“He was available,” UF coach Dan Mullen said Monday. “He was cleared to play, but I don’t think he was 100 percent. Going into the game, our thoughts were, ‘Hey, if we cannot play him this week, give him the opportunity to be 100 percent next week, instead of kind of playing at 80 percent on consecutive weeks.’
“He was battling. I know he wanted to play. He didn’t get into the game, but that’s a good thing for us because we expect him to be 100 percent coming into this game.”
Mullen said there’s also a chance running back Dameon Pierce will be available for Saturday night’s game. He took a helmet-to-helmet blow in the win over Auburn.
“Dameon Pierce has got a chance to play as the week goes on,” Mullen said. “We’ll see where he’s at coming off the hit he took in the game.”