Notebook: Gators name starting offensive line; injury report
After a month of evaluating their offensive linemen, the Gators made their first attempt at naming the five starters.
Florida released its depth chart for the season opener Monday and it listed transfer Mason Halter (LT), redshirt senior Trip Thurman (LG), sophomore Cam Dillard (C), sophomore Antonio Riles (RG), and sophomore David Sharpe (RT) as the starters.
Thurman is the only returning Gators offensive lineman with collegiate starts under his belt, logging 10 starts at left guard last season. Halter, who transferred in from Fordham in June, will be relied upon to start immediately after arriving at Gainesville as a two-time Division I-AA All-American left tackle at Fordham.
“That’s a position we’ve talked about it in depth all through camp, trying to find those eight or nine pieces and exactly what the best ones are in combination,” coach Jim McElwain said of the offensive line. “You’re going to see a lot of rotation in there as we go through this game.”
The depth chart might have looked different if freshman Martez Ivey hadn’t suffered a leg injury that required arthroscopic surgery last week. Ivey was working with the first-team offense as the left tackle before the injury.
But McElwain did not rule Ivey out from playing in Saturday’s season opener against New Mexico State. Ivey did miss practice Monday, however.
Injury report: Along with Ivey, safety Keanu Neal also missed practice Monday.
“They’ll work on rehab,” McElwain said of Ivey and Neal on Monday. “However, I wouldn’t put [their availability for Saturday’s game] out of the question believe it or not. But we’ll hit that on Wednesday when we talk about the injury report heading into the weekend.”