McFarland coming in June


Michael McFarland has made yet another change in his collegiate plans.

Days after announcing that he would be grayshirting this fall and not reporting to Florida until January of 2011, the Tampa Blake tight end commit is now expected to arrive in Gainesville in June, he said Wednesday night.

McFarland said Florida coaches informed his high school coach, Harry Hubbard, Wednesday that they were no longer interested in grayshirting him. Originally, McFarland accepted the grayshirt during his official visit this past weekend because Florida’s staff felt that at 6-foot-6, 235 pounds, he was undersized and wouldn’t be physically ready to compete in the fall.

“I guess they made a mistake,” McFarland said of the coaches deciding not grayshirt him.

Soon after news of McFarland’s grayshirt situation broke, talk heated up surrounding the possibility of Auburn offering and looking to get more involved in his recruitment. When asked if Auburn offered him recently, McFarland said Auburn had offered and had always been one of the schools he was interested in.

It wasn’t until there was talk of him grayshirting at Florida that McFarland says Auburn reopened its communication with him. He added that he has no interest in Auburn and is planning to sign with Florida on National Signing Day on Feb. 3.

McFarland agreed with the staff’s decision original decision and said he planned to take the summer and fall to get his weight around 275 pounds.

Now, McFarland said he’s hoping he can add some bulk to his frame once his high school basketball and track seasons are over. McFarland said he was worried that because of the amount of muscle mass he loses during basketball and track, he would need that time during the fall to add much-needed weight. Even with a shorter amount of time to prepare, McFarland said he should be ready for summer practices.

“Two months is just enough time to try and do as much as I can do,” he said. “There’s only so much I can do.

“If I can get to a solid 245, I think I’ll be in good shape. I know my legs are going to get there because I run track. Then that turnover is going to get there, so I’m not worried about (gaining 10 pounds).”


  1. MaFarland is essentially saying: “I’m committed to being part of the Gator Nation, just let me know when you need me to arrive in Gainesville”. His “gray shirt” may become a redshirt year for him but he will have access to the strength and conditioning coaches while eating whatever he wants to gain the weigh to play tight end in the SEC. Best of luck to him during basketball and track seasons.

  2. Sounds odd that they would grayshirt him to put on weight. That’s generally what a redshirt year is for at the start of a kid’s collegiate career. Why not bring him in and redshirt him like everyone else? I suspect there was an issue with scholarships running low and they needed someone to push his scholarship out to 2011. Perhaps when the Gators cut ties with Demar Dorsey, it gave them what they needed to bring McFarland in this summer rather than waiting until 2011.

  3. Probably has more to do with the Gators eventually losing out on some of the top players they had hoped to add to this year’s class. And of course losing Dorsey, which opened up a spot this year as well.

  4. I take this as a sign that we are expecting to miss on most of the few elite recruits still on the board, thus re-opening the scholarship for McFarland. I appreciate his willingness to grayshirt, and believe the coaches will, too.