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Saturday, December 09, 2023

UF may be without one of its starting cornerbacks for the season opener.

Sophomore Markihe Anderson sprained the MCL in his right knee on Saturday and is questionable for this weekend's game against Western Kentucky.

"We're making an effort to get him back, but there's a strong possibility that he won't play," defensive backs coach Chuck Heater said. "If he doesn't, it'll be Joe Haden and Wondy Pierre-Louis."

Anderson and converted running back Markus Manson were the projected starters after spring practice, but Haden - who is likely the only true freshman to start - and Pierre-Louis have both since passed Manson on the depth chart.

After a stint on special teams last year, Pierre-Louis may be one of the most improved players on the team.

"Physically he made some strides and improved some areas he needed to improve to function as a corner," Heater said. "He's playing more consistently, and he's more focused now."

While they won't start, Manson and Jacques Rickerson should still see playing time.

"They are in the mix, we'll have a few substitution groups," Heater said.

RETURN GAME: With the NCAA pushing back the kickoff spot to the 30-yard line, coaches and players are expecting more kicks to be returned. With that in mind, UF running back Kestahn Moore has some lofty goals for the Gators return unit this season.

"I'm planning on six (team return touchdowns)," Moore said.

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