The Long Snapper (2/22/10)

dismissed from the Gator football team
dismissed from the Gator football team /

.  It has been said that Brown has not met expectations since he joined the Gators last year and this was the last straw.  Hopefully his dismissal would have also occurred if this was the first straw.  It’s time to clean up this program.  The number of arrests is staggering and not a good reflection on a school you hear repeatedly referred to as providing a damn good public university education.  Mistakes will be made and not every player can be controlled, but hopefully Brown’s dismissal can act as a message to others going forward.  A player who had a bright future ahead of him (regardless of what people think about the incoming class, Brown had a good chance to play extensively over the next few years) is gone because of a bad decision he made.  You aren’t given multiple chances if you screw up your original ones in the way Brown did.  This should now be set as the standard.

A host of new stars take over the nation’s best conference in 2010.  Sorry USF fans, I’m not talking about the Big East.  Argue all you want about the Big 12 or even the Big Ten – as some seem to do – but the SEC has produced the last four national champions, putting them firmly on top of the heap.  So who will it be this year?  There’s a great chance Alabama and Florida will face off in Atlanta once again, but don’t count out the next set of SEC teams just yet who are ready to take over at the top for the Crimson Tide and Gators.  Auburn is a program on the rise.  You can never write off LSU.  Even South Carolina looks like it could realistically make some noise.  Any way you slice it, the Southeastern Conference will be as competitive as ever and could very easily bring home a fifth consecutive BCS National Championship.

I won’t get into the hatred that spews from the mouths of Gator fans for draft guru Todd McShay, but to say you would think people can’t change…ever.  Tim Tebow the quarterback is broken and can’t be fixed.  At least that’s what McShay and others would lead you to believe.  But Tebow is trying because he’s not going to give up based on what someone who is making a guess at his future has to say (let’s be honest for a moment, hate McShay or not, he’s got a damn cool job that most of us would take in a second).  So he’s working on a couple of specifics in preparation for his pro day.  First of all, Tebow is attempting to keep the ball closer to his shoulder instead of dropping it to his waist.  Hopefully that will reduce some of the release speed issues.  If you remember (and I think I’ve mentioned it on this site before), one of the things that got Rex Grossman drafted so high was the fact that he had such a quick release.  Tebow, does not.  Keeping the ball higher should allow him to get rid of it faster.  Tebow will also be working on his footing.  Up to his pro day – and assumedly beyond it – he’ll be working on three- and five-step drops.  All of this is in hopes that he can actually fix some of the negatives that so many seem to think he can’t.  Here’s to believing he can get better.  Tebow will never be the prototypical passer in terms of what the NFL looks for, but he will improve and should get looks at quarterback at the next level.

Sticking with orange and blue for today’s Long Snapper, former Gator defensive end Carlos Dunlap is doing everything he can to prepare for the NFL Draft.  Dunlap was once considered a lock to go in the first half of the first round in April.  There was even talk of him being a top five pick.  Then came the questions about effort; followed up by his DUI arrest which immediately put a red flag next to his name.  In response, Dunlap is training and training and training.  His goal is to get himself in the best shape possible for the NFL Combine.  On talent alone, Dunlap is one of the best athletes entering the NFL this year and that would warrant a top pick.  If he can silence the critics about the other points, he could make that happen.

My jump into the world of Facebook has been exactly what I expected for the most part.  The Bull Gator fan page has more fans than I thought it ever would and continues to grow, so that’s a plus.  But on the negative side, I check my personal account way more than most should.  I post relatively infrequently, but I still look.  Then again, I expected that from the beginning.  I do, however, stay away from controversy.  I am a fan of exactly two pages – the TBG one and the alumni association of my high school.  No political or religious affiliations for me.  No support of anything the slightest bit off color.  Nothing of the sort.  My posts are even good natured.  Basically I’m saying, I will not be taking the Jamere Holland route anytime soon.  The Oregon wide receiver has been kicked off the Ducks’ football team after a profanity-laced post that appeared on his Facebook page.  Holland had thought linebacker Kristian Kiko Alonso (I need more people named Kiko in my life) had been dismissed from the team and that apparently set off his tirade.  For good measure, Holland even brought race into it.  Oregon head coach Chip Kelly didn’t explicitly state Holland was kicked off for the post, but sure hinted at it: “I won’t get into the specifics, but you’re smart enough to figure it out.”