Florida Football: 4 Gators Most Likely to Disappoint in 2013
Although some stood out more than others in 2012, the Florida Gators found so much success because they received valuable contributions from many different players on both sides of the ball.
Unfortunately, there were also some who greatly underachieved.
Andre Debose is one name that immediately comes to mind. After a decent season in 2011, Debose caught a measly 3 passes only one calendar year later. As a result, no one is expecting much of anything from Debose on offense this season.
However, a few of his teammates are facing very high expectations. In some cases, they may be too high and extremely difficult to live up to.
Here are four cases that could fit this category in 2013.
Jeff Driskel has somewhat divided the Gator faithful. On one hand, many are confident that he can make big strides in 2013. Meanwhile, the other camp is skeptical that he can be the field general that Florida needs.
In any case, it is hard to predict how much Driskel will improve by the season opener. If the answer is "very little," he may be a huge disappointment.
Physically, the tools are all there. Driskel has size, and he is very athletic. His great speed alone sets him above many other quarterbacks.
But will the right mental aspects be there? Will he have an improved pocket presence and be able to cycle through his reads?
We just don't know at this point. If not, the Gators will be in for a long season. They can only go as far as Driskel takes them, and right now he is the epitome of a hit-or-miss player.
Most are expecting Kelvin Taylor to make a significant impact during his maiden season on the Florida campus. In terms of raw skill, this is a reasonable assertion.
However, he may need a full year to get acquainted with the offense and adjust to the speed of the collegiate level. This could be seen as a disappointment in the eyes of Gator fans.
I'm not saying Taylor will have a terrible season. I'm saying that expectations for him need to be curbed a bit.
Many expect him to be able to immediately run wild once he gets his opportunity. However, there should be a significant learning curve for Taylor. Not to mention, he has to distance himself from Matt Jones in order to merit more carries.
The fact is the Gators are facing one of the toughest schedules in the country, which includes LSU, Georgia and South Carolina. It's a huge step above the high school level, and Taylor will need time to familiarize himself. That could very well take more than one full season, which makes Taylor a potential candidate for disappointment.
Loucheiz Purifoy exploded onto the scene as an explosive defender in 2012. He forced three fumbles and blocked two kicks, which would be significant accomplishments for any player in the country.
While I expect him to be solid once again, it will be very hard for Purifoy to further elevate his game. I am still not convinced he will be the national superstar that many expect.
As great a defender as Purifoy is considered, he has no career interceptions. This is somewhat unsettling because the Gators were so reliant on winning the turnover battle last year. With a lot of younger players expected to rotate in the secondary, Purifoy will be counted on to be a veteran who puts himself in the right position to spark his teammates. He can't do that if he is unable to intercept passes.
As for his possible offensive role, I am not too optimistic in that respect either. He may see one or two plays a game, but his impact will be minimal.
SImply put, Purifoy is getting a lot of hype after his terrific 2012 season. There is a good chance he will not be able to completely live up to that hype in the coming months.
Vernon Hargreaves III
I hate to single out two freshmen, but Vernon Hargreaves III is another young Gator who simply is expected to do too much in 2013.
He was one of the most hyped recruits in the country to begin with, and his MVP performance in the Under Armour All-America Game only fueled his popularity.
But like I said with Taylor, SEC football is an entirely different animal from the high school level. It would really shock me if he was able to take the field and immediately be the next Joe Haden.
Unlike Purifoy, Hargreaves has shown himself to have great hands in the secondary. He has good instincts, and he will be a special player.
I just don't think it will happen immediately.
Unfortunately, Hargreaves is expected to come out of the gate and be a dominant and disruptive corner. For this reason, I don't think his freshman season will be seen as overly impressive.