PY not tempted by football


By now, you’ve seen the video. It’s made the rounds. But in case you missed it, Florida senior forward Patric Young worked out with the Florida football team over the summer. The 6-foot-9, 245-pound Young didn’t throw the ball well, but looked more than comfortable catching the ball and running pass patterns.

Young comes from football bloodlines. His father, Robert Young, was a tight end at Bethune-Cookman and with the Jacksonville Bulls of the USFL.

Plus, we’ve seen plenty of college basketball players make the transition to tight end at football and shine — most notably, Antonio Gates with the San Diego Chargers, Tony Gonzalez with the Kansas City Chiefs and Atlanta Falcons and Jimmy Graham with the New Orleans Saints.

So, would Young consider a move to football if he isn’t taken high in the NBA draft next spring?

“I look at those guys and say, ‘Hey man, I could play football’,” Young said.  “But I look at (Miami Dolphins tight end) Dustin Keller, he just tore his knee up. I feel like I made the right choice (with basketball).”

Young also chose to return for his senior year. He underwent surgery to remove bone spurs in his ankle and admitted he endured some knee tendinitis on and off during his junior season. Even though his draft stock wasn’t high following his junior season. Young admitted he was hounded by agents last spring.

“It’s just annoying, because it’s not illegal for agents to message me on Facebook or Twitter or somehow they get my phone number,” Young said. “I know a lot of guys want to represent me because of my marketability. That’s probably the most annoying thing I had to deal with. It is a relief knowing after this year, I won’t have to deal with that.”

Asked for a goal this season, Young didn’t mention any individual stats.

“Thirty wins,” Young said. “I’ve never had a 30-win season.”

The Gators have won 29 wins, 26 wins and 29 wins in Young’s first three seasons. Win number 30 would likely put Florida in the Final Four for the first time since 2007. But it’s a long road from October to March, and Young will need to improve both his scoring and rebounding numbers (10.1 ppg, 6.3 rpg) to help get the Gators there.