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Tuesday, July 05, 2022

RB Blakely to transfer, displeased with pro-style offense

Mike Blakely will not a play a down of football for the Florida

Gators.

The

early enrollee freshman running back announced Tuesday he will

transfer from UF after sitting out all of spring practice

recovering from arthroscopic surgery on his left shoulder.

Blakely committed under Urban Meyer but remained loyal to UF when

Will Muschamp took over — until he saw the new regime‘s on-field

product.

“I

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just didn’t like the pro-style offense once I saw what it was all

about,” Blakely said.

The

former Manatee High standout said he is used to being “the back” on

the field, and said he feels he can start immediately somewhere

else instead of waiting in line at Florida.

He

would have been competing for playing time in a crowded backfield

featuring Chris Rainey, Jeff Demps, Mike Gillislee and Mack Brown

in the fall if he stayed. Blakely said it’s clear that Charlie

Weis’ pro-style attack is only going to utilize one or two backs,

and he would prefer to play for a spread offense.

“Mike has come to the conclusion that the University of Florida is

not where he wants to play football,” Muschamp said in an official

statement. “We wish him the best of luck.”

Blakely informed the Gators head coach of his decision in a very

short phone conversation.

“(Muschamp) asked, ‘You’re going to transfer?’” Blakely said. “I

said ‘Yeah,’ and that was it.”

Blakely said transferring is something he thought about for a long

time. It was clear to him for most of the spring that UF wasn’t

where he wanted to be.

During his high school career, the 5-foot-9, 198-pound Blakely was

an All-American and was rated the No. 6 running back in the nation

by Rivals.com

He

is not yet sure where he will transfer, but it won’t be the

Southeastern Conference — at least not immediately. 

“[UF] told me I can’t transfer anywhere in the SEC, so I’m leaning

toward going [to junior college] and then coming back to the SEC,”

Blakely said. 

The

freshman is the third player to transfer from Florida in less than

a month. Wide receivers Javares McRoy and Chris Dunkley announced

they were leaving the Gators on April 15.

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