Defensive Coordinator Charlie Strong was in Tallahassee Tuesday night speaking to about 100 people with the Capital Area Gator Club. There was nothing groundbreaking, which is the way these things should go. But there was enough to get excited about.
- Strong called this the most anticipated season in Florida football history. He also warned that despite returning two-deep on defense, at some point Florida will give up a touchdown. Regarding the defense, Strong said Ryan Stamper does not get enough credit, behind Florida's outstanding secondary and Brandon Spikes. He also said Carlos Dunlap is playing like former Florida great Wilbur Marshall.
- Strong said that for Tennessee, they will "just play the game," and not try to win "fifty to nothing." Of course, that doesn't mean they aren't trying to win 70-0. Strong was very diplomatic in speaking about the SEC teams, but made the point that LSU will be the most difficult game this season since it is at Baton Rouge.
- Leadership must be a big deal because a large portion of Strong's presentation was about leadership. Strong said at 4:45am, three guys are in the gym each day; Spikes, Stamper and Tim Tebow. Those three are leaned on to motivate players and make sure no one gets complacent.
- They showed a video that was designed for recruits with quotes about leadership and how the team is a family. The best part is that they have cut in parts of Obama's speech welcoming the Gators to the White House with highlights. (Obama says something about Tebow, then a cut to Tebow screaming in the locker room at halftime of the Oklahoma game.) It's a cool piece of editing. It helps that Obama talked about character, family and leadership, which is pretty much what every college coach talks about too. But the video is a good recruiting tool. Do you want to see the President of the United States complimenting your future school? Or do you want some assistant coach ripping his shirt off during your recruiting visit?
- Strong had his polo shirt buttoned to the top, as is his style.