Based on conversations I’ve had with fans and friends, and after listening to talk radio the past few weeks, the consensus out there seems to be that Feleipe Franks has little or no chance of being Florida’s starting quarterback on opening day Sept. 1 against Charleston Southern.
My response to that is this: Hold on for a little bit and let’s wait and see what happens in the first two weeks of spring practice. By then, we’re going to know a lot more about Franks and the other quarterbacks in terms of how they’re fitting into Dan Mullen’s offense and what kind of potential they have.
There are certain things about Franks that we all agree on. He’s got a great arm. He’s got great size (and getting bigger and stronger if you check out a recent photo of a shirtless Franks on Twitter following a workout). He’s got athletic ability. He’s got a considerable upside. What he doesn’t seem to have is a natural feel for playing the position in terms of pocket presence, reading defenses and the ability to make quick, and correct, decisions where to go with the ball.
Reversing the negative side of Franks is where Mullen comes in. His track record for developing quarterbacks, and fitting the offense around them, is exemplary. In Franks, Mullen is going to have a lot of ability and potential to work with. And he’s getting a kid who has a great work ethic and wants to be coached. He wants to be a great quarterback.
So, before we cast off Franks, let’s give Mullen a chance to work with him, to coach him, to develop him. I would think Gator fans would be excited about the possibility of what might happen putting a kid with this much raw talent with a coach who really knows what he’s doing.
If anyone can transform Franks, it’s Mullen. Let’s give it some time to see if that transformation occurs in the spring. If it doesn’t, maybe Franks will be at FAU or some other school by the time the fall rolls around. But I just have this feeling that Franks might be right here on Sept. 1, in The Swamp, Florida’s opening-day starter at quarterback.