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Tuesday, November 28, 2023

Freshman Mike Pouncey continues to impress UF coach Urban Meyer on the defensive side of the ball.

A day after confirming the converted center would play at defensive tackle against Vanderbilt, Meyer left the door open for a possible start by Pouncey.

BI?ve seen energy, I?ve seen a young guy that loves football, I?ve seen a tough guy and a big guy,C Meyer said. BHe?s got that big ol' rear end you need in there to stop some runs.C

Meyer said it would be a game-time decision as to who will start alongside senior Clint McMillan at defensive tackle.

Pouncey?s only experience on the defensive line until this week in practice was playing in goal-line situations in high school, Meyer said, so he still has a lot to learn about the position.

BHe?s really smart,C Meyer said. BThere is not an issue as far as football smart. Understanding scoop blocks and understanding what goes on on offense has actually helped him.C

Pouncey is filling in due to season-ending injuries to Javier Estopinan and possibly Brandon Antwine.

Meyer hasn?t decided whether the position switch will be permanent.

The coach expects Carl Johnson, Maurice Hurt and Marcus Gilbert to help replace Pouncey in the offensive line rotation.

Pouncey?s twin brother, Maurkice, starts at right guard on the offensive line.

TAILBACK BY COMMITTEE: After declaring the starting running back job Bwide openC earlier this week, Meyer said the Gators will go with a committee approach Saturday against Vanderbilt.

He said sophomores Brandon James, Percy Harvin and Jarred Fayson, as well as junior Kestahn Moore, will all carry the ball.

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Moore lost his hold on the starting job after a mistake-riddled performance last week against Georgia.

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