On Wednesday, the SEC released a list of every player who will represent the 14 SEC schools at next week's SEC Media Days, and Florida fans should be happy about the three names picked to represent the Gators: Jeff Driskel, Dominique Easley, and Jon Halapio.
All three picks make sense individually — Driskel's the quarterback, even if he is the first junior Florida will take to Media Days under Will Muschamp, and a bright guy; Easley's a senior and a great quote; Halapio's a senior and a funny, smart quote — and philosophically for Florida, which is sending a quarterback and two linemen with a coach who repeats a mantra about the SEC as a line-of-scrimmage league. Driskel's low-key by nature, and is all the wattage Florida needs, while Easley and Halapio, both dedicated program guys, are both deserving of some pub. None of these guys is going to state statistical goals like Mike Gillislee did last year, and none really carries the threat of tiresome questions about Florida's discipline, in light of Aaron Hernandez and revelations about the Urban Meyer years, because Easley's alleged assault evaporated and Driskel and Halapio are both squeaky-clean.
For some, like 247Sports' Thomas Goldkamp, sending Driskel also means that Driskel's taking on some of the responsibilities of leading a team, which has been one of the bigger areas of concern about Driskel since he came to Florida. Florida wasn't Driskel's team in 2011, and it was only sort of Driskel's team in 2012, but it will unequivocally be Driskel's team in 2013, and that's going to bring more scrutiny for how Driskel conducts himself and communicates with his teammates than before.
Because he's going to be compared to Tim Tebow repeatedly, anything less than fiery, vocal leadership from Driskel is going to seem inadequate to some. But I'm definitely not in that group: I think Driskel's an effective, if subtle leader — he reminds me a bit of Chris Leak in that regard — and I think how he leads is going to matter a lot less than how he plays.
All that said, though, sending Driskel to Birmingham is better than the alternative, which would have brought questions about why Muschamp was hiding his quarterback. It's good that Florida made the safe, smart choices it did here.