Jonathan Bullard has his grandmother's memory to uphold. And he's got that story to tell — which is part of why he'll be one of Florida's representatives at the 2015 edition of SEC Media Days later in July, as the conference announced Thursday.
Florida - Jonathan Bullard (Senior, Defensive Line) was raised in part by a grandmother who battled cancer during his high school career. Despite his intention to play at a school near her home, she encouraged him to follow his dream and play at Florida. She saw him play his freshman year but soon became ill and passed away the week after he played the best game of his young career vs. Missouri. She remains an inspiration to him.
GatorZone's Scott Carter detailed the relationship between Bullard and his "mawmaw" last fall:
Jonathan recently got a tattoo of his grandmother on his chest to make sure she is close at all times.
"She was just a big part of my life," he said. "That just motivates me. I want to do the right things because I feel like she is watching me at all times. She was real supportive and she would give me her last. I just want to go through this and do it for her."
Whenever Jonathan comes home, it never fails that at least once Monica asks where he is going and he’ll reply: "To go see mawmaw."
Bullard's decision to return to Florida for his senior season was a mild surprise when announced in January: He would likely have been selected in the 2015 NFL Draft, though maybe not as early as he would've liked. Instead, he'll be a leader on Jim McElwain's first Florida team.
Florida will send two other players with Bullard to SEC Media Days, and is likely to announce those players next week. SEC Media Days runs from July 13 to 16.