University of Florida quarterback Feleipe Franks warms up before the Florida Gators game vs. Iowa in the Outback Bowl / Gator Country photo by David Bowie Steve Spurrier is in the Florida Gators football offices. He has his own office at the end of the hall in the communications wing and occasionally meets with the football coaches to talk ball, watch film and stay around the team. He isn’t, however, making decisions about personnel; so don’t expect to see Jim McElwain and Doug Nussmeier playing on the quarterback carousel that Spurrier set up with Noah Brindise and Doug Johnson in 1997.
For the first time since they’ve been together in Gainesville Nussmeier and McElwain will have a quarterback under center that they recruited to run their system.
They’re just still not sure which one that will be.
This isn’t their first spring camp. Both Kyle Trask and Feleipe Franks enrolled early in 2016, going through spring practice in more of a learning, intern capacity than a true competitor for playing time. That internship went into the season where both took redshirts, watching from the sideline as Luke Del Rio and Austin Appleby took turns leading the Gators.
This spring is different. The internship is over; both have their eyes fixed on a full-time job as the Gators’ signal caller. The problem is, there’s only one ball. Only one of them can start, which on the surface, could create tension.
According to the two quarterbacks, who also double as ping-pong opponents, the competition hasn’t affected them or their teammates negatively.
“It’s never been like that in any competition I’ve been in, but it’s important to have that on-field help,” Franks said of any potential animosity during a position battle. “Me and him helping each on the field and then as well as off the field. Me and him just helping each other and being there for each other. It’s not what people make it to be – hatred. It’s a friendship that could possibly last for a lifetime. It’s really fun.”
Unlike Franks, who was a three-year starter at Wakulla high school, Trask had to battle adversity in high school and is familiar with battling for a starting role. Trask attended Manvel High School in Texas where the offensive system was spread out, not the best fit for his skillset. Due to a Texas High School rule, Trask would have had to sit out a season if he transferred, so he remained at Manvel where head coach Kirk Marvin promised he would help Trask out when it came to playing time and his recruitment.
“I think I just kind of took that as a blessing. It taught me to never take a rep off, make every rep count,” Trask said of his high school experience. “I’m always in a competition. I’ve always been in a competition all throughout high school. It’s been a blessing for me just to teach me harder work ethic.”
Trask and Franks are in an interesting situation. The pair enrolled in school at the same […]