Florida’s spring game was a success.
Not only does it look like the Gators have found a new starting quarterback in Luke Del Rio, who completed 10 of 11 passes for 176 yards and two touchdowns in last week’s Orange & Blue Debut. But Florida’s decision to move the spring game from Saturday afternoon to Friday night worked out.
The University of Florida estimates that 46,000 fans attended the game compared to about 25,000 last year. Sure, a 10-win season and a trip to the SEC championship game helps generate excitement among the fan base, but the belief is the comfortable weather that comes along with a night game helped bring more people to the Swamp.
“Change is hard for a lot of people. It’s hard,” Gators coach Jim McElwain said Friday night after the spring game. “And yet the success of this is something that will always just keep growing as we go through this Friday night game, and it was great. We doubled the crowd from what we had a year ago. All the events going along with it. The students were jacked up. They were in it. I think it was really good.”
Moving Florida’s spring game to Friday night for the first time ever also allowed Gators coaches to have a full day with recruits who were in town on Saturday. Florida received one commitment from 2017 three-star tight end Kemore Gamble over this past weekend.
“I think it was a success,” McElwain said of the change. “Now, it made some people who had been doing the same thing over and over and over for a lot of years, it made them kind of maybe have to recheck and change some things, right? But I think overall, it was a great success.”