Welcome to Bait & Bits, a series on Hail Florida Hail that will feature one “bait” about an opposing school and some bits about the Gators. Have any links that you want on Bait & Bits? Tweet it at us @HailFloridaHail or @BrettKaplan13 or email it to us at [email protected]
Memphis Tigers. The Memphis Tigers come into tomorrow’s game against Florida on a six-game winning streak, which includes a win over the fifth-ranked Oklahoma State Cowboys. The Tigers’ last win came against the University of Arkansas-Little Rock whom they defeated 73-59. The Gators also faced UALR, the only school both teams have faced, and beat them 86-56 with a shorthanded team.
Florida Climbs Three Spots in Latest Poll. Florida (7-2) jumped three spots in the AP Poll to the number 16 slot after defeating the thirteenth-ranked Kansas Jayhawks last Tuesday. Other notable teams the Gators have or will play: #4 Wisconsin and #10 Connecticut (both losses), #18 Kansas, #19 Kentucky, and #23 Missouri. Florida’s opponent Tuesday, the Memphis Tigers come in at #15.
Chris Walker Finally Joins the Gators. The super athletic, five-star, McDonald’s All-American and gem of the 2013 glass Chris Walker has officially enrolled in at UF and has begun practicing with the Gators. The 6’10″, 220-pound center has decided to wear number 23. Walker is the first scholarship basketball player to join the team mid-season since Billy Donovan took over. He hasn’t passed the NCAA Clearinghouse for eligibility yet. Here’s a little hype video to get you set for what you should expect.
Tyler Murphy Leaves Florida. After graduating Saturday, Florida quarterback Tyler Murphy added his name to the list of Gators transferring or leaving the program. The Orlando Sentinel’s Edgar Thompson tweeted the news:
#Gators announced QB Tyler Murphy will transfer after graduating Saturday, making him eligible to play in 2014.
— Edgar Thompson (@osgators) December 15, 2013
Murphy started in place of the injured Jeff Driskel and played well until he suffered a shoulder injury against LSU that basically effected the way he played the rest of the season and ended up being season ending. Murphy led Florida with 1216 yards, 6 touchdowns, and 5 interceptions, completing 60.5% of his passes. Since he graduated on Saturday, Murphy is eligible to play next season with the team he chooses. The loss of Murphy leaves Florida with only two scholarship QBs on the roster, with incoming freshman Will Grier making it three if he should sign with the Gators.
Damontre Harris Most Likely Will Never Play at UF. At the beginning of the season, Florida expected a trio of transfers to step on the court and produce. Dorian Finney-Smith, the transfer from Virginia Tech, was suspended for the first two games, but seems to be playing more and more comfortably and continues to contribute on a regular basis. Rutgers transfer Eli Carter has been hobbled by a broken leg all season, and will redshirt this year. And Damontre Harris, the transfer from South Carolina, most likely will never be a part of the team. Harris has had issues with his accountability, so much so that he doesn’t go to class or even respond to coaches texts, emails, or phone calls. It seems like the coaches are trying to get him on the right track, but he just doesn’t seem to respond. It’s too bad too. Florida could have had the deepest team in the country with all of these players playing a solid role, but it looks like Chris Walker, Kasey Hill, and Finney-Smith will have to pick up the slack for those who won’t contribute this season.