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Wide receivers Justin Shorter and Trent Whittemore, along with defensive lineman Princely Umanmielen spoke to the media after practice Wednesday.
Here are the takeaways:
- Shorter asserted how ready he is for the game against Kentucky. He stated that he expects to display his physicality on Saturday despite not getting on the scoresheet against Tennessee. Shorter emphasized that he relishes the opportunity to contribute to the team in any way, especially by blocking downfield. "I actually love blocking. It lets me show how physical I am and gets me respect from DBs."
- Shorter noted that part of his job out on the field requires him to be alert in case Emory Jones breaks out for an improvised run, “I’m always ready,” Shorter said. Emory Jones contributed 147 rushing yards out of 290 total against Tennessee. Shorter assured the media that blocking was indeed as enjoyable as receiving.
- "Every time he touches the ball, I think he's going to break for a 90-yard TD.” Those were the words Shorter reserved for the awaited return of Anthony Richardson, whom Dan Mullen gave the figurative green light to at the SEC teleconference earlier this week saying: “He’s ready to go. 100% ready to go.” Mullen also said that Kaiir Elam should be available against Kentucky. Two possible returns that can push the Gators over the 4-0 Wildcats.
- One of the many Gators to receive more playing time this season, Princely Umanmielen, reflected on the opportunity to show what he can provide to the Gator pass rush. Umanmielen recognized that he could have played better in the season-opener against FAU, but he praised his play against USF and said he made the best of his opportunities against Tennessee.
- Umanmielen attributed his improvement throughout this early season to practice and the guidance of fellow lineman Zachary Carter. He explained that Carter helps him with small details that are crucial to the college game, that Umanmielen did not see much of last season. "Practice habits and how to practice. Being consistent," said Umanmielen when asked how Carter has helped him improve.
- Both Umanmielen and Trent Whittemore voiced the importance of going into the hostile environment provided by an undefeated Kentucky at Kroger Field. "It's a challenge because they're 4-0. They think that they can beat us,” said Umanmielen. Whittemore backed his teammate in what can be perceived as the consensus mentality going into Saturday’s game, "Any time you play an SEC opponent you know it's a tough task. Atmosphere will be great and they're 4-0."
WCC: Updates on everything Justin Shorter, Trent Whittemore and Princely Umanmielen had to say can be seen HERE.