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Mullen Thursday press conference tidbits

April 4, 2019
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Florida Gators head coach Dan Mullen met with local media to recap the first part of the Gators 2019 spring practice and scrimmage while previewing the second half of the Gators spring ball period. 

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Here are the updates and notes: 

  • Mullen says he was pleased with the intensity in the guys attitude during the scrimamge last Thursday. He wants the attitude to be the same every day but there should always be a step up when they enter the stadium (where the scrimmage was held).—“I was somewhat pleased, the guys how they went after the day...I expect everybody to go hard every day.” Mullen says the guys are practicing smart while still keeping up intensity. The plays that see Feleipe Franks lowering his shoulder and running guys over, he wants to see that on 3rd and 2 next year. And defensive guys flying in on a receiver or quarterback, he wants them to play intense but be smart. They try to hold them off from full on tackling even in the scrimmage. That being said he has asked for intensity every day and the guys are delivering.
  • When it comes to the offensive line, Mullen says that a unit that is obviously still young and inexperienced. They wouldn’t be ready for a game today according to the coach, but he says luckily they still have a while before they need to play and he sees the progress in them that is encouraging. 
  • Mullen says of wide receiver, athlete Kadarius Toney—"You flip the ball to Kadarius Toney, something exciting's gonna happen. Good or bad, you don't know what's gonna happen." So right now coaches are working with him to be an every down player. He sees Toney trusting the coaches that within a scheme, he’ll get his touches, but right now it’s about developing other parts of his game.
  • When Mullen is asked about lack of 5-stars on the roster so therefore where does he think the talent level is, he says “we’re ok.” He’s pleased with the depth needed at certain positions and feels they have the talent they need for what they want to do but the talent level is “decent. We can get better.” Adds that their development and confidence though is at a different level than it was last year. 
  • Mullen on safety Brad Stewart, who has been a practice standout in recent weeks—"He's an athletic guy, a big hitter...he can make plays whether it's agains the run or the pass, he has the athleticism to put himself in position to make plays." Says that's a position where if you make a mistake, it can result in 7 points for the other team so he's seen Stewart grow to understand putting himself in position to make the right play. He goes on to say younger guys have to learn that sometimes you doing the right thing means someone else is going to make the play and that means you're in the right place.
  • There’s an adage that once a quarterback gets to college, he is who he is and can’t be taught to be more accurate. Mullen says he doesn’t buy into that belief and actually feels like he can teach a quarterback, including Feleipe Franks, to be more accurate—"It's much easier to teach someone to be accurate than throw a spiral." Goes on to say that the biggest part of developing Franks game right now is making sure that if he makes a bad throw he doesn't then make three more. That when a bad throw happens, he moves past it right away instead of dwelling on it like he would've done in the past.
  • Mullen takes time to reflect on the last couple of weeks after losing his father. He got to go home a few weeks ago to tell him bye (he'd been sick and they knew it was coming) and then they went this past week to the funeral they held for him. He admits it’s been a tough couple of weeks but he takes time to remember how much his dad meant to him and how thankful he’s always been for his support. 

Mullen Thursday press conference tidbits

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