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Saturday, June 15, 2024

Caldwell 'written in stone' to play against No. 1 LSU

Andre Caldwell is back, and so is his swagger.

BThis is my time, also my team?s time to show the world,C he said.

Caldwell, UF?s standout senior wide receiver, played sparingly last week against Auburn due to a sprained MCL.

But he won?t be kept off the field Saturday when the No. 9 Gators (4-1, 2-1 Southeastern Conference) face freshly minted No. 1 LSU (5-0, 3-0 SEC).

Caldwell deemed himself 90 percent healthy after Monday night?s practice.

He said he would be back to full strength by the end of the week.

BIt?s written in stone,C Caldwell said. BIt?s a done deal. I wouldn?t let them sit me out this game. I?m going regardless. This is one of those games, whatever is wrong with you, you?re going to get over it.C

Caldwell caught four passes for 111 yards in the first two games.

He then sat out wins against Tennessee and Ole Miss, but surprisingly caught passes in warm-ups and started against Auburn.

He only got his feet wet - failing to touch the ball in the game - and spent most of the night on UF?s sideline.

BI told Coach (Urban Meyer) I thought I was good enough to go,C Caldwell said. BBut he was looking out for my future.C

Caldwell?s return should give a stagnant offense more versatility.

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He provides a third option to complement Tim Tebow and Percy Harvin, the only players who are consistently receiving touches.

BIt helps because he?s such a threat over there and the trickle-down effect [benefits other receivers],C UF offensive coordinator Dan Mullen said.

Caldwell broke his leg in 2005 against Tennessee, forcing him to miss the final nine games of his junior year and take a medical redshirt.

But missing two games this year - his final year - provided much more pain.

BI?ve only got a couple more games at UF,C Caldwell said. BSo this hurt a little more than the first time, when I had a couple more years left.C

TRAUTWEIN OUT FOR SEASON: Meyer confirmed the inevitable Monday, announcing that senior tackle Phil Trautwein would miss the rest of the season with a stress fracture in his right foot.

Trautwein, a preseason All-SEC second-team selection, can apply for a medical redshirt to come back for one more season.

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