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Chomping at Bits: Florida's kicker tryouts get over 200 sign-ups, including former walk-ons

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Florida will have more than a few prospective kickers to choose from.

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Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

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Florida kicker tryouts net more than 200 sign-ups, including former walk-on: Turns out that an open call for walk-on football players posted on Twitter can be wildly successful.

The Gators are looking for a kicker to add to the mix behind Jorge Powell and Austin Hardin, both listed as starters on last week's depth chart, because the injury Powell suffered at LSU is reportedly "significant", and because Hardin has dealt with his own injury concerns this year. If Powell's hurt, and Hardin is close to hurt, having another kicker in uniform at least prevents Florida from having to turn to Johnny Townsend as its kicker, much as the 2010 Gators did with punter extraordinaire Chas Henry.

Henry made seven of 11 field goals that year while filling in for an injured Caleb Sturgis, and memorably made a game-winning field goal in overtime to beat Georgia, but he also missed a field goal in a 33-29 loss to LSU, and went 0-for-2 in Florida's 10-7 loss to Mississippi State in its homecoming game. (You thought Will Muschamp invented Florida losing its homecoming game?) Essentially, even though Hardin was obviously healthy enough to play against LSU on Saturday, and will likely be fine enough to prevent a walk-on from being immediately pressed into service, Florida needs a buffer between Hardin and a total unknown kicking.

The favorites to win a role as Florida's walk-on kicker? Former Florida walk-on kicker Brooks Abbott, who transferred to Florida from Virginia Tech in 2014, then left the program this spring, tweeting Monday that he was "burnt out," and former Florida walk-on kicker Dallas Stubbs, whom The Gainesville Sun suggests will try out.

Abbott appeared to be well behind Hardin and Powell in the kicker pecking order during practices in 2014, and did not participate in the 2014 season beyond a single kickoff in Florida's season opener, while I don't recall Stubbs kicking at practice at all. But bringing former walk-ons back into the fold would seem like a better idea than plucking a student from obscurity.

Florida, LSU can't claim "DBU" title anymore: Also: One-game samples are totally valid for sweeping conclusions. (Graham Hack, The Independent Florida Alligator | Jesse Simonton, Miami Herald)

Gators remain confident entering bye week: Maybe because their defense played well below its normal standards, they have reason to believe this was a blip rather than a trend, and they can still say they only really lost because of a gutsy trick play? (Robbie Andreu, The Gainesville Sun)

Why Florida should press under Mike White: I mean, Florida's gonna press. It pressed under Billy Donovan, too. The difference is in style and rate of use. (Austyn Szempruch, Gator Country)

Stop getting worked up over social media threats: Was a handful of idiots saying dumb stuff to Michigan's punter a bad thing? Yes. Did that phenomenon deserve the overheated headlines and righteous Joe Tessitore knockdown it got? Probably not. (Brian Cook, mgoblog)

Stanford's business school roiled by love triangle: Rich, successful, and famous people do stupid things for love and sex, just like the rest of us. (David Margolick, Vanity Fair)

Chris Hansen returns to vigilante justice: With a special appearance by Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd! (Spencer Woodman, The New Republic)

Appreciating Anthony Bourdain: I've never watched quite as much Bourdain as I'd like, but this fantastic essay is a great reason for me (and maybe you) to reconsider. (Andy Greenwald, Grantland)

Today's favor for friends: Two friends of the blog and UF law students are now recording a weekly podcast reviewing a movie per week. It's called 52? in 52, which is super creative, right? They're also spoiler-sensitive, in case you, like me, don't see movies until about three months after their release. (52? in 52)

The Tuesday Tune: The video for Drake's inescapable "Hotline Bling" dropped last night, and caused only slightly less of a furor than that Star Wars: The Force Awakens trailer, because it's Drake, and there are voluptuous women, and there is dancing, and more dancing, and also "Hotline Bling." But I hate "Hotline Bling" — which is undeniably a good song — for what it represents, so the Tuesday Tune is D.R.A.M.'s "Cha Cha," or the song that inspired "Hotline Bling" before it got neutered by whatever lawyer figured out that Nintendo wasn't getting paid off the Super Mario World sample.

Your Gators moments of zen:

That's Florida baseball player Buddy Reed, potentially the No. 1 pick in the 2016 MLB Draft, banging a deep (it's so not 55 yards, as the caption claims) field goal.

And Florida's soccer team tried their feet at it kicking, too.

The comments are yours.