Zach’s Mail Stack 9/25

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Florida certainly dropped the ball at Alabama over the weekend, and that loss will have an impact in recruiting.

How much? That’s to be determined.

In speaking with several people involved with recruiting over the past few days, including a couple prospects, the general feeling is that UF didn’t live up to expectations.

The Gators were in it until the end of the third quarter, but they way the lost — worst defensive showing in school history, inability to move the ball offensively, poor quarterback play — did not sit well with most recruits. I’ll have a story later tonight on the fallout from the game.

No big-name prospects have or will drop Florida from consideration based on one loss, but UF has to respond and win some SEC games to gain back momentum. Some prospects also want to see Treon Harris and a few other freshmen get a shot next month.

The LSU matchup on Oct. 11 is going to be HUGE for recruiting, granted the Gators take care of business at Tennessee the week before. If they don’t, the promising outlook for this class will be in jeopardy.

On to the questions!

Is Adonis Thomas still solid to the Gators?Johnoy, Ken, @mevansfl

Thomas, one of Florida’s top commits, caused a stir Saturday when he sent out a series of tweets suggesting that he could be rethinking his pledge to UF.

“Can’t even lie Bama looked real good,” Thomas wrote on his Twitter page. “Decisions to be made.”

Thomas spurned the Tide for the Gators on Aug. 1 despite giving Alabama the last visit before his decision. His coach, Todd Wofford, told The Sun in June that Thomas wasn’t concerned about Muschamp’s future because he values the school he’ll attend more than the football program he’ll play for.

“It’s about the college,” Wofford said. “It doesn’t matter what the record is or who the coach is.”

However, Thomas still plans to officially visit Alabama and other schools in addition to UF. The Gators should remain in good shape with Thomas if Wofford’s comments hold true, but it’s always a concern when members of your class want to take trips.

Florida’s other LB commit, Jerome Baker, is attending Ohio State’s game this weekend and plans to return there for an official visit later this year. At this time, those two appear to be the only recruits UF has to worry about.

You did a make up of the class last week. If the coaches get their wishes, what players would make up the missing pieces of the class you gave?@DustinUselton

Here’s the possible class makeup I wrote for those who missed it: 1 QB, 1 RB, 4 WR, 2 TE, 6 OL, 5 DL, 4 LB, 2 DB.

If the coaches had their pick of remaining targets, I think they would want to land running back Ray-Ray McCloud III, receivers Antonio Callaway/Ryan Davis and Deon Cain/George Campbell, Devonaire Clarington or Daniel Imatorbhebhe at tight end, offensive linemen Martez Ivey and Jalen Merrick, defensive linemen Byron Cowart, CeCe Jefferson, Daylon Mack and Kendrick Norton, linebackers Jeff Holland and Roquan Smith, and defensive backs Jeremy McDuffie and Jaquan Johnson.

Do we have an impact wide receiver coming? — @lesley_andrew

I believe the Gators do in Derrick Dillon.

He put on a show at Florida’s summer camp and has accounted for 768 total yards and nine touchdowns through three games this season.

Dillon also has one of the best junior highlight tapes of any receiver in the class of 2015.

[youtube 5qGvKDkhT3A 580]

That’s all for this week! Be sure to leave your questions for the next mailbag in the comment section below.

33 COMMENTS

  1. sc gator –

    He has had plenty of time to recruit and “coach up” players to catch the ball and to find a WR coach.

    I would ask if Muschamp is a real Head Coach. He is supposedly a defensive guru and Kiffin absolutely undressed him…..,.

  2. GREAT POST Mushmouth, for a minute I thought that Zach’s story for today was going in the direction of blaming injuries, but i apologize to Zach. We have some pretty good players but they remain on the bench when we need them in the game. Note what Zach said about the prospects, they want to know why some of the players are not hitting the field. I was sure when this season staarted that we would be running platoons of players at the enemy. To show force and keep fresh talent in the game, but we went back to the ole Muschamp strategy “just run the ball and use only two players to do that. RESULTS: three and outs and WEAR OUT your own Defense. People are talking about how much yardage was given up and it being the most in history. After Scoring two touchdowns and battling a pretty good power running team they were exhausted and couldn’t make a tackle. That is a Direct result of the poor performance of the Offense. GO GATORS!!!!

  3. I understands everyone’s frustrations and all that, but I’m an old school Gator fan from 1966, been to Gainesville many times to support our Gators win or lose. I hope they are able to gather themselves, improve, mature, etc. I still support Muschamp, but he, the coaches, and the players better start producing, etc. I reckon the handwriting is on the wall. Go Gators.

  4. I hope Adam Lane gets some playing time. I’m disappointed he didn’t get any playing time in the Alabama game. Also, I really Treon Harris needs to get some time on the field. The defense really needs to fix whatever they’re doing and if Muschamp is meddling with the offense, he better leave the play calling to Roper. If Driskell can’t move the offense and get some wins, Muschamp/Roper better play Treon or Greer. Treon deserves first shot after his performance. 7 wins should keep Muschamp’s job safe. 6-5 and 7-4 is improvement over 4-8. The Gators need to show something vs. Tenn with a win. Go Gators.

  5. I don’t think Muschamp is going to survive. The Gators need 4 more wins to have a 6-5 record and that’s going to be hard to do. I think a 6-5 record MIGHT get Muschamp another shot but he’s gone with another losing season. Give them wins over Vandy and EKU. That leaves 2 wins coming from UT, LSU, Mizzou, UGA, SC, & FSU. I don’t see it, I just don’t see it. There’s too many weaknesses on this team starting with both lines, a weak secondary, not enough quality receivers, and no experienced backup QB to go to if Driskel doesn’t get it together PDQ. I hope to god I’m wrong but I think we’re in for a coaching change and all the ramifications that it will have on holding a recruiting class together. Foley has hired 3 Head FB coaches. Meyer did a great job but Zook flopped and Muschamp is struggling. Foley has done a solid job overall except for his FB coach hires. By that, he hasn’t hired a coach who has lasted whether they won or not. More than that, I still haven’t gotten the Earnest Graham – Darnell Dockett incident out of my craw because I think Foley’s public refusal to back Spurrier on the matter probably had a lot to do with Spurrier leaving. At the time, Spurrier said that the time he was UF’s Coach, 12 years, was probably long enough for any coach to be at one place. Well, he’s in his 10th season at SC and showing no signs of leaving anytime soon. Hmmmm. And he left without another job offer. That was followed by the very public saga of Foley travelling around the country courting Bob Stoops, then Mike Shanahan with Ron Zook constantly jumping up and down in the rear of the room with both hands in the air. What a fiasco that was. At least Foley hired Meyer and that brought us 2 quick NC’s but no longevity from Meyer. Instead of learning his lesson from hiring someone with no head coaching experience (Zook), Foley repeated the same mistake with Muschamp. OK, I believe Muschamp needed a couple of years on the HC learning curve but we’re now in his 4th year and there appears to be stagnation stemming from a lack of coaching. 3 Offensive Coordinators in 4 years. No quality receivers. Weak offensive and defensive line play. A secondary that has gotten burned by UK and Bama. Finally, a QB who makes bad decisions under pressure. If Foley has to let Muschamp go then he should exit immediately afterward and let a new AD hire the next FB Coach. Tom Jurich from Louisville would be an excellent choice, IMHO. I hope I’m wrong and Muschamp survives and goes on to lead UF to play for SEC and National titles. End of Rant.

  6. I support Will and think he will right the ship if he does not sit by and let Driskel continue to be unproductive. A change is needed if Jeff cant get it done because I truly believe that Treon could have done better than 9-29-1 td 2 int’s. If our QB struggles next game, a change must come or both the coach and QB will be in search of a new job.

  7. Foley did not hire Urban that was Machin all Foley had to do was not screw it up. If you look at Foleys track record of hires other than Billy D who has he hit a home run on? Foley should be gone along with Muschamp kiss this recruiting goodbye. Now whom ever comes in will have good talent because we have recruited well the last couple years. But this year we are going to miss out on some big names unless the decision is made quickly it is not a matter of if but when.

  8. Guys, I know many in the Gator Nation are hurting, pissed off, frustrated, and all the other things that disagreement with Coach Muschamp can cause. But here is the reality of the situation – He is our head coach right now. So shut your crying and moaning, and give this season / team a chance.

    I’m not saying I disagree with many of you, but I disagree with how you are bashing our coach. Do you think this is healthy for anyone associated with our program in any way? I’ll tell you honestly, it isn’t!

    Looking back at the game last week, while Jeff still locks on to receivers, fails to see open slot receivers, and acts scared at times – he DID hit some receivers right in the chest / hands! They dropped balls, got lost in the sun, etc. That put us behind on the down and distance and impacted play calling. Which then lead to the decision to run the ball, trying to give our D a chance to catch their breath.

    So Coach did make some sound decisions trying to salvage the game. You can’t go into Tuscaloosa and beat a Bama team while failing to execute! Just not gonna happen. We failed to play Gator football and it showed.

    I’ve seen signs, and heard comments that indicate this is a team on the verge of fracturing under the stress of Offense vs. Defense – Let’s not add to the pressure! Instead, support our beloved Gators and like mom always said…

    If you don’t have something nice to say, don’t say anything at all!

    Go Gators! Beat Tennessee!

  9. Stanley,
    I will stand up for Muschamp if you are looking for someone to do that. Im not saying he is doing a good job but I will say a lot of the criticism he is getting right now is premature. We lost A Alabama. Badly. So what? 6 months ago, before the delusion started to set in on most fans, just about anyone you asked was saying that if Florida just didnt get blown out, it would be progress in the right direction. Well, the game was tied near the end of the 3rd qtr and we ended up loosing by 21 in a game where Vegas had us 20 pt underdogs. I know the defense looked particularly bad, but if there is any part of the team that Muschamp can coach well, its the defense. The doom and gloom is just premature. If we beat Tennessee, We will be exactly where I hoped we would be before the season began. IF we lose to Tennessee, then the doom and gloom isnt as premature. But for people to have already formed opinions this negative of the team this early is basing your opinion on not a large pool of data. Tennessee will show us more about this team than any other game they have played so far.

  10. @ Stanley – Don’t even try it! You had no proof that we would be in this position. If you did, you would have been able to convince every Gator fan and expert, who thought Florida had a chance to turn things around. Plus, if you go back and read the majority of my posts, you will find that I pointed out comments that were false, because I knew what the facts were. I will never apologize for being optimistic. I’m remain optimistic and will remain that easy until the war is over. I don’t believe in laying down in the middle of a battle. I don’t like what I have seen during the past 2 games, but, if you go back and look there where approximately 3 plays in each game that made the entire effort look bad. In the Kenturkey game, Pittman dropped a perfect pad during the first drive. That play could have made all the difference in the world. In both games, we had two blown coverages that lead to TD’s. Take those few plays out and each game would have had totally different outcomes. So, we’re not far off from playing solid football. Now, if things don’t improve. We make a change and I have said that many times. As far as your question about where I was – I had major surgery last Thursday; so, I haven’t been on line much. I assure you, I’m not afraid to stand up and defend my position on anything. Hopefully, you will support our program as long as our guys are out there fighting. Don’t be like Harry Reid, who said, “This war is lost”, when we had trips on the ground in Iraq. I realize that is something much more important; however, it’s the same principle.

  11. I support Coach Boom too. Actually, when I look at positives I thought the OL and DL held up well, early on. The OL did not give up any sacks and the DL unfortunately, got worn out late and missed tackles, etc.

    We all knew the DB were young. Here’s hoping the coaches /dbs watch some film and correct the mistakes. We all K ow they were highly recruited 4 and 5 star athletes.

    go Gators

  12. Sorry, but Gators can’t be great with Driskel unless defense dominant. Driskel, simply put, does not have the goods to be above average QB. He panics, does not make good decisions, and is at times inaccurate. This is recipe for poor QB play usually, and at best, inconsistent. The brighter the lights, the poorer these types of QBs play as every mistake magnified.

  13. I hope recruits don’t read these comments and think they are indicative of most gator fans, If it were me I’d turn and run. All these chicken littles and I told you so-ers bashing the program and criticizing a 20-year-old kid that is trying harder than anyone of us are doing much more harm than good. If friends and family are down are you going to point your finger and say I told you so you dumb bastard? No, you offer a helping hand and words of encouragement. In the end if those in charge are getting it done, changes will be made, regardless of your comments…. Until then I suggest you pick up a weapon and stand a post, either way I don’t give a damn what you think you’re entitled to.

  14. Mr. Fatback,

    I am criticizing a man getting paid millions per year to put a high school team on the field. I do not balme the players – they are coached and then you see the results on the field. This hire was bad from the beginning. This should not be a place to learn how to become a head coach. He is absolutely lost and it shows on the field….

  15. Definitely a lot to be said for playing younger players and how that can positively affect recruiting. Both UT and UK are very good at advertising this as a recruiting strategy, and despite both losing to UF last year and UK this year they are having far more successful fall recruiting cycles. UT has played something like 71% of their true freshmen. No doubt that coaching stability probably ranks first in a recruit’s head, but don’t overlook that HS players take note of where they may play first too.

  16. Adonis Thomas ….can’t lie Alabama looked good of course they did they have tons of 5 star players…..remember when Gators won 2 National Championships not to long ago? If all you 5 star players keep going to Alabama and Fsu,Ga,ect and none to Gators, you wonder why we are n the shape we’re in , give e a break.

  17. Adonis Thomas ….can’t lie Alabama looked good of course they did they have tons of 5 star players…..remember when Gators won 2 National Championships not to long ago? If all you 5 star players keep going to Alabama and Fsu,Ga,ect and none to Gators, you wonder why we are n the shape we’re in , give me a break.

  18. (Adonis Thomas ….can’t lie Alabama looked good ) of course they did they have tons of 5 star players…..remember when Gators won 2 National Championships not to long ago? If all you 5 star players keep going to Alabama and Fsu,Ga,ect and none to Gators, you wonder why we are n the shape we’re in , give me a break.

  19. GoGator you expressed that everyone was a little frustrated, in a way that it seemed that you were telling all of us to chill out. But immediately after that you showed your frustrations, It’s hard for a veteran since 1966 to handle also. We feel your pain, you are trying to be more Diplomatic about it but it the frustration has shown thru. GO GATORS!!!!

  20. If Florida can finish with at least 6 wins, I think Muschamp should keep his job and look for more growth and maturity next year. Should there be a coaching change after this season, that means another rebuilding of the program, to me that just doesn’t look good, especially in recruiting, where it takes a couple of years building relationships with the schools and recruits. What high profile coach would even come here, think about It? is there another Urban Meyer out there? I really think we should be patient and go along with these growing pains. Go Gators.

  21. wow….smh since when did we the almighty GATORS go settle for under achievement……..we are on the same level as bama etc…..now we don’t expect to beat good teams and settle a 6_7 game win season that’s sad for a coach that’s been in place for 4years…….We are Florida we should be loaded……something in program ain’t right…..no swag…..wrong qb……favoritism coaching…….etc…….gone are the days win we won with ease……he’ll outta the next 8 we favored in like 2 teams bullcrap……

  22. GoGator don’t accept MEDIOCRITY, no one in GATORNATION should accept that especially after 4 years under the same HBC.So far there are not many excuses to blame the O-Line, injuries. the D-Backs are young and if we didn’t do a better job on recruiting before this year and we are stuck with TALENTED FRESHMEN, but the bottom line on that leads back to coaches and recruiting.I believe most of us THINK we know what the programs problem is but we can’t fix it. We can only express our opinion. My opinion is it’s not the freshmen D-Back and the few droppedd passes, they drop passes in the pros. Defensive failure are direct results of offensive failures. GOGATORS!!!!

  23. GoGator don’t accept MEDIOCRITY, no one in GATORNATION should accept that especially after 4 years under the same HBC.So far there are not many excuses to blame the O-Line, injuries. the D-Backs are young and if we didn’t do a better job on recruiting before this year and we are stuck with TALENTED FRESHMEN, but the bottom line on that leads back to coaches and recruiting.I believe most of us THINK we know what the programs problem is but we can’t fix it. We can only express our opinion. My opinion is it’s not the freshmen D-Back and the few droppedd passes, they drop passes in the pros. Defensive failure are direct results of offensive failures. GOGATORS!!!!

  24. GoGator don’t accept MEDIOCRITY, no one in GATORNATION should accept that especially after 4 years under the same HBC.So far there are not many excuses to blame the O-Line, injuries. the D-Backs are young and if we didn’t do a better job on recruiting before this year and we are stuck with TALENTED FRESHMEN, but the bottom line on that leads back to coaches and recruiting.I believe most of us THINK we know what the programs problem is but we can’t fix it. We can only express our opinion. My opinion is it’s not the freshmen D-Back and the few dropped passes, they drop passes in the pros. Defensive failure are direct results of offensive failures. How many very poor throws have we had vs the amount of dropped balls.GOGATORS!!!!

  25. Question for your next mail stack:

    I am a big Muschamp believer, but clearly things are teetering on disaster for him. I know that he believes in Driskel, and I want too, but unfortunately outside of his size he does not have the “it” and simply has not performed in the most basic of skills for the QB position. I am afraid that if Champ sticks with D, he is as good as gone. I wonder what you think if he were to go with Treon? I am thinking that even if the Gators do not perform extremely well that recruits will still come if they see that Treon has some swagger and continues to be accurate?

  26. “How do I know this? Because it takes one to know one…”

    I appreciate somebody at least reading the post and pretending to be me. Oddly enough whoever you are you did not disagree with the comment that was made.

    Post away and use whatever screen name you choose, it will not take away the fact Muschamp is lost…………