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The One Nagging Doubt

DRU2012

Super Moderator
Staff member
Super Moderator
I WANT to trust our new Coach, am hoping we can count on he and his much-expanded staff to get us where we all wanna go.
It sure appears that he and they are determined to “Do things the right way”, to build this thing back, set it all on a firm foundation.
The only not-so-small question that has crept back into things of late is at QB, where Emory Jones (not so surprisingly perhaps not finding a crowd of top programs lining up to woo him through the transfer portal) has apparently backed away from leaving after all...
Now, I’ve always said that Emory would make a fine BACK UP QB for us, and he has been nothing but a friend and tight teammate to AR15; as long as things stay that way, and that there is a full and fair shakeout involving our array of talented QB alternatives (all FIVE of them, including the latest highly-rated transfer out of Ohio State), “the road back” might indeed still begin in 2022 (if somewhat modestly) after all. But if the seeds of further descent are still germinating in Gainesville, it is at the QB position I fear where that will openly manifest.
It’s gonna be a delicate situation, and I’ll say no more about it here now except to voice my concerns—my HOPE that our new Coach and staff have a solid vision and plan for fitting their offense to the talent and personalities of the players at hand.
For all his “quarterback whisperer” rep, as time went on I was less and less convinced that Coach Mullen really had so “cogent” a plan; it was his in-game play-calling skills that consistently came through for us, when things DID turn out well. And when they didn’t, well...there sure were some stomach-turning letdown performances from his chosen QB1 as the 2021 season wound down. I just can’t get those out of my mind.
Bringing Jones in to direct a mainly running-game offense when a better-rounded starting QB is banged up, or as a change-of-pace until someone like AR15 gets more experience running the first-string offense could be a big help, a real “fortunate option” if it could be managed with little in the way of resentment or controversy.
But that’s the most I tend to expect from Emory Jones on this team, off last year’s performance.
But who knows? I was wrong about so much else about Dan Mullen and the way he saw and ran things here, maybe I’m all wrong about this too.
Too much time on my hands now, maybe...So I vent my concerns, but hasten to add that hey, there are different ways of looking at all this, and probably the sooner we get to NEXT YEAR the better!
Tell me what you all think, how things are finally beginning to shape up now and what we need to look for in the weeks ahead. Me, I should probably just stay away from monitoring YouTube, etc...I’d be a more relaxed individual! (LOL)
 

Leakfan12

VIP Member
Jones is staying? CRAP!!!!!!!! I wish he went to Louisiana Tech or a non-power 5 team like Driskell which last I checked worked out well for Jeff since he's in the NFL. The good news is they have a new coach and everyone would get a chance. Napier isn't as loyal to Jones as Mullen was which didn't work out well for him.
 

Escambia94

Aerospace Cubicle Engineer (ACE)
Moderator
Look at it this way: Napier has been on campus for barely 45 days and has already convinced 90% of the veterans to stay and compete. As for Emory Jones, we should he happy for him. He is only a semester away from graduating with a degree from the University of Florida. We all know he is not going to make in the NFL, so he might as well get that degree rather than hop around the transfer portal hoping for a school that will give him a shot at the NFL.
 

DRU2012

Super Moderator
Staff member
Super Moderator
Look at it this way: Napier has been on campus for barely 45 days and has already convinced 90% of the veterans to stay and compete. As for Emory Jones, we should he happy for him. He is only a semester away from graduating with a degree from the University of Florida. We all know he is not going to make in the NFL, so he might as well get that degree rather than hop around the transfer portal hoping for a school that will give him a shot at the NFL.
Not that it really matters what WE think, but do you really think Emory himself is seeing it that way? Personally, I really hope so, for HIS sake—it would amount to a level-headed and mature way of accepting and DEALING with his Gator career so far. Frankly, regardless of exactly HOW he sees things, I am hoping it is just one more part of the positive impact that our new Coach and the “culture” he has brought and is establishing now is having across-the-board at UF.
 

Escambia94

Aerospace Cubicle Engineer (ACE)
Moderator
Not that it really matters what WE think, but do you really think Emory himself is seeing it that way? Personally, I really hope so, for HIS sake—it would amount to a level-headed and mature way of accepting and DEALING with his Gator career so far. Frankly, regardless of exactly HOW he sees things, I am hoping it is just one more part of the positive impact that our new Coach and the “culture” he has brought and is establishing now is having across-the-board at UF.
Yes. I think Emory and his family value that college diploma. I think Coach Napier reinforced that position, because the diploma helps Emory’s value not only as a graduate student athlete getting NIL, but also in terms of connecting to the Gator Nation as an alumnus.

In terms of on-field opportunities, remember that statistically he is still a good QB. With the right off-season coach (similar to Denny Thompson) and a fresh coaching staff, Emory could be turned into a serviceable QB. If that does not pan out, Emory still gets to make NIL money for another year, he gets a diploma, and he gets to enjoy being a Gator student athlete for another year. There are plenty of UF athlete graduates who did not succeed as pro athletes—not including guys like Tim Tebow. The Gator staff has a couple Gator graduates who never made it in the NFL, including Vernell Brown (B.S. Family Youth & Community Sciences (May, 2005)).
 
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DRU2012

Super Moderator
Staff member
Super Moderator
Just want to add that at this point, I am ready to “turn the page”—to finally move on: Accept the fact that it is a new day, in every meaningful way now more and more “a new PROGRAM” under our new Coach and his extensive staff.
The changes are already full and quite far-ranging, and are having an impact at all levels.
I am ready to trust them, the coaches, players and changes thus far AND the many others no doubt on the way to in turn bring a new “look” and future to our program.
I’m mostly in “wait and see” mode now, as I say, and understand that little more can be firmly judged or concluded for now—not until they get out there on the field again.
Meaningful insights will mostly have to wait until the 2022 season’s action begins.
I DO NOT necessarily predict or expect a spectacularly immediate improvement, not yet: Let’s see what we’ve got and how it develops.
There IS reason for hope, for general optimism. Even under the best of circumstances, lack of depth in certain areas will no doubt mean we’ll need a certain amount of good fortune with regard to injuries in order to begin a satisfactory return among the more competitive SEC programs; most of the other teams in our Conference are making positive moves themselves, after all.
For the moment, we must be patient. Appreciate incremental change for the better, and for the most part at least for the moment judge ourselves in terms of how we evolve together, AS A TEAM.
That, and attention-to-detail, seems to be a pervasive underlying philosophy of this Coach, his approach and that of his whole (much expanded) staff.
I really like what I see, FEEL, so far. And THAT is about as much in the way of “judgement” as I am inclined to offer for some time to come, I think. The earliest I’m likely to feel qualified to go further and/or deeper probably SHOULDN’T be until we’ve gotten at least a few GAMES under our belts next fall—and maybe a bit longer than that (though I’ll no doubt break my own self-advice on this, unwise as that may be!).
For now, I AM interested in one thing:
To what degree do y’all agree or DISAGREE with what I say here? Above all, do YOU guys feel this growing sense that we ARE “on the right track” now?
After “mistakenly buying in” before, of course it is hard to rush to any “full support” now, but even forced to careful caution, I am more and more convinced, almost in SPITE of myself, that maybe we got it right this time after all...
I came IN thinking “We damn well BETTER!”...and now, little more than a month later, I’m already moving to “Know what? Count me in.”
How bout y’all??!
 

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