Florida Gators athletic program heads into offseason on a high note
Welcome to another installment of Good Morning, Gators, SEC Country’s daily morning column covering Florida athletics with beat writer Jordan McPherson. Here’s a look at what you might have missed on Thursday.
Florida athletics ends season on a high note
What a year it was for the Gators athletic program. Florida won three national championships in the closing five weeks of the athletic year and, in turn, finished third nationally and first in the SEC in the Learfield Directors’ Cup standings. Overall, Florida had 10 top-10 team national finishes this season
Closing the door on the Florida baseball season
The championship has been won and the celebration has subsided. Here are some pieces of reflection as this season of Florida baseball closes.
- Coach Kevin O’Sullivan’s legacy at Florida was only bolstered by winning the program’s first national championship.
- O’Sullivan’s kids — 6-year-old Payton and 4-year-old Finn — played a valuable role in the national championship run, as well.
- The Gators needed ace pitcher Alex Faedo to be dominant in the College World Series. He was.
- The story of how the “rally cup” came to be in the College World Series Finals.
- The family of the Florida fan who collapsed during the CWS finals and was revived by two fathers of members of the LSU baseball program released a genuine message of thanks for all who helped.
Also, the O’Sullivan to South Carolina rumors can be put to rest. The Gamecocks are expected to hire South Florida’s Mark Kingston as their next head coach.
Gators in the minor leagues
- Left-handed pitcher A.J. Puk, who is now playing for the double-A affiliate of the Oakland Athletics, is one of 49 players who will compete in the 2017 MLB Futures Game.
- Outfielder Buddy Reed, playing for a single-A affiliate of the San Diego Padres, talks his love for hockey, his minor-league career to this point, and Sour Patch Kids.
- Tim Tebow speaks about not wanting ‘what if’ life and reflects on Peyton Manning going to Denver.
Former UF track athlete talks about competing with cancer
Jamaican Olympian and former Florida track star Novlene Williams-Mills opened up to ESPN.com about competing on the biggest stage of sports after battling breast cancer in 2012. An excerpt:
“I went to Jamaica, and to be honest, I went into the national championship and I just went about my business. I was just trying to carry on. What am I supposed to do? Am I supposed to just sit at home? One of the things I asked was, “Can I continue to run until we’re ready to do the surgery?” [My doctor] said yes. I needed something to distract me, because I know sitting at home I was just going to worry. I was going to cry. You know, my husband was going to work, all my friends at that time were competing, so I had nobody to talk to at home.”
Florida football players recount LSU game
Do you remember the Florida-LSU game? The goal-line stand? The home game played in Death Valley? The Gators certainly do. Coach Jim McElwain and an assortment of players reminisced on the 16-10 win on the SEC Network on Thursday.
Transfer reportedly quits football team
Just three days after McElwain publicly welcomed tackle Jake Fruhmorgen to the Gators football team, the Clemson transfer has reportedly left the Florida program.
Let’s keep talking
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What they’re saying on Twitter
Linebacker Vosean Joseph
I stay like that steak sauce cause I keep it A1- @dhatboi_slim
— Vosean Joseph (@gloryboy_Sean) June 30, 2017
Olympic swimmer Ryan Lochte
— Ryan Lochte (@RyanLochte) June 30, 2017
Defensive lineman Zachary Carter
New Beginnings 🤑 pic.twitter.com/wDH9J0jtDK
— Zachary L Carter (@_ZachAttacks) June 30, 2017
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