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50 For 50, No. 41: In All Kinds Of Weather, Gators Stick Together

Florida Matt Elam was cited/arrested for underage drinking early Sunday morning. Offensive lineman Jon Halapio had this to say on Sunday night on Twitter.


Yes, to some degree, that's a tacit endorsement of underage drinking, which isn't something that Halapio (still underage) or any other Gator should necessarily be endorsing. (Let he or she who teetotaled until 21 indignantly raise the first mug of root beer.) But more importantly, it's a show of support for Elam, and recognition that while what he did was criminal, it wasn't unforgivable. That's being a good teammate.

The best teams always seem to have some sort of familial structure. They have talent, too, of course, but the players exhibiting it are usually part of a network of people trying to make sure it shows all the time. It's easier to want to play hard for coaches and teammates you life, easier to get up at pre-dawn hours if you're doing so with friends. When Janoris Jenkins was kicked off the team, a few Gators sent "We'll miss you, bruh"-type tweets to him; that's what teammates who care about each other tend to do.

Team Speed Kills' David Wunderlich is hearing Will Muschamp, in his endless string of interviews, imply that the 2010 Florida team lacked leadership and chemistry. I don't think that's going to be the case this year, and that's partly because of things like this that prove in all kinds of weather, Gators stick together. That still matters.