GAINESVILLE — Florida is scheduled to hold its first full spring scrimmage Thursday.
Coach Jim McElwain said the team will have between 117-128 reps inside Ben Hill Griffin Stadium, with an emphasis on situational drills.
“We’ll work some situational things, some third down, some red area, some goal-line,” McElwain said. “Just so we’re kind of doing some two-minute before the half, two-minute at the end of the game, some of those kind of things just from a situation standpoint and see how the guys handle that.”
McElwain added that all four quarterbacks — Luke Del Rio, Austin Appleby, Feleipe Franks and Kyle Trask — will get reps with the first-team offense during the scrimmage. All four are competing for the starting position, with Del Rio considered the favorite to become the starter.
However, McElwain isn’t ready to crown Del Rio as his next starting quarterback yet even though he’s said he has a leg up on numerous occasions because he’s been around the team longer.
“From a familiarity standpoint, you would hope that he is (ahead) … you know, just terminology, verbiage, that kind of thing,” McElwain said.
Appleby, Franks and Trask have a chance to make an impression on McElwain and offensive coordinator Doug Nussmeier during the scrimmage.
“I’m excited to see how all those guys kind of operate in The Swamp,” McElwain said.
Injury update: Another battle will be brewing during the scrimmage, but this time it will be due to injuries.
Senior wide receiver Ahmad Fulwood and JUCO transfer Dre Massey won’t be playing in the scrimmage after McElwain said both of them pulled something in their legs. Their loss can be early enrollee freshmen wide receivers Freddie Swain and Josh Hammond’s gain.
Both are expected to get more reps during the scrimmage, as well as redshirt junior Alvin Bailey and senior Chris Thompson.
Running back Jordan Scarlett is also dealing with a leg injury and his status for the scrimmage is uncertain.
Center Cam Dillard suffered a broken nose during practice and will also be held out, allowing reps for redshirt freshman T.J. McCoy and sophomore Tyler Jordan.
Spurrier among those watching practice: There was a familiar sight during Florida’s practice on Wednesday.
Former Gators head coach Steve Spurrier watched practice and had a chance to catch up with McElwain.
“He let me know that he was gonna be coming through and I love to have him at practice,” McElwain said. “Sitting down it’s always great to talk to him. The guy meant so much to this program obviously, not only as a player but what he did as a coach. Let’s face it, the guy’s a former Gator and that’s cool.”
Spurrier won the 1966 Heisman Trophy at Florida and later went to coach at UF, posting a 122-27-1 record, losing just five home games in his 12 seasons, and winning six Southeastern Conference titles and the 1996 National Championship.
Former Florida defensive coordinator and current Atlanta Falcons head coach Dan Quinn watched, and current Oakland Raiders head coach and Luke’s father, Jack Del Rio, was also in attendance.
Actor Gene Hackman rounded out the cast.