College Prospect Preview – Florida vs. Georgia

It’s called the World’s Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party every year when the Gators and Bulldogs meet in Jacksonville. There are always a lot of future NFL players on that field each year – in the 2013 NFL Draft there were 16 players selected from the two schools. In the last 10 drafts, they have combined to see 106 of their players selected in the annual selection meeting.

Florida (4-3) vs. Georgia (4-3)

EverBank Field in Jacksonville

Saturday, November 2nd, 2:30 p.m. CDT, CBS


Florida CB Loucheiz Purifoy

Florida

#15 RCB Loucheiz Purifoy/Junior: 6-0, 190 pounds, 4.47 seconds in the 40-yard dash.

2013: 6g/3s, 14 tackles, 2 tackles for loss, 1 sack, 1 interception/42-yard return, 1 forced fumble, 1 recovered fumble, 3 passes broken up, 1 blocked punt. Career: 32g/15s, 92 tackles, 3 tackles for loss, 1 sack, 1 interception, 5 forced fumbles, 1 recovered fumble, 8 passes broken up, 3 blocked kicks.

Purifoy at his best seems to be in the middle of everything on the Florida defense. Earlier this season against Arkansas he earned national and SEC defensive player of the week honors for a game where he had 4 tackles, 3 passes broken up, 1 interception that he returned 42 yards for a touchdown, one sack and a forced fumble. Purifoy missed the ’13 season opener serving a 1-game suspension. He’s a very good athlete with speed and quickness and he’s made himself a major contributor in the kicking game as well as on defense. He’s blocked 3 kicks and has returned punts with some success this season. Florida plays an NFL style defense and the coaches ask Purifoy to play man-to-man press coverage and he handles those assignments well. He also is a fluid athlete who can turn and move with quickness. He enjoys supporting on the run, and is willing to fight through the blocking to reach the ball carrier. Purifoy is a first-round talent.

#5 LCB Marcus Roberson/Junior: 5-11¾, 195 pounds, 4.52 seconds in the 40-yard dash.

2013: 4g/3s, 8 tackles, 3 passes broken up. Career: 27g/17s, 53 tackles, 1.5 tackles for loss, 1 sack, 3 interceptions, 1 forced fumble, 1 recovered fumble, 17 passes broken up.

He missed 3 games due to a strained knee that he suffered on September 13th. In his true freshman season in 2011 he started 10 games before his season came to an end due to a serious neck injury, as he fractured his C6 vertebrae. He came back and played in 2012, starting four games and was back in the starting lineup this season, as well as getting time in the kicking game. Roberson has the physical characteristics to play the corner in the NFL, with quick feet, long arms, solid and active hand work and the ability to flip his hips and run with receiver. He has worked on getting stronger, something he will need to play in the NFL. He will need to play better against the run, as his support on defense is not consistent.

#14 S/CB Jaylen Watkins/Senior: 5-11½, 188 pounds, 4.43 seconds in the 40-yard dash.

2013: 7g/6s, 38 tackles, 1 tackle for loss, 6 passes broken up. Career: 43g/25s, 119 tackles, 3 tackles for loss, 3 interceptions, and 20 passes broken up.

Watkins suffered a sprained foot during the Gators pre-season camp and came into the season a bit hobbled. But early in the season, he returned an interception 26 yards for a touchdown against Kentucky. Watkins moved to safety to help the Gators replace last year’s starters Matt Elam and Josh Evans, who were both selected in the 2013 NFL Draft. Before that, he played on the corner and that’s where his future in the NFL would appear to be. He’s a lean-bodied athlete with very good speed to close the gap should a receiver give him the slip. Watkins has good vision and instincts, and he has all the intangibles when it comes to leadership and smarts.

#67 RG Jon Halapio/Redshirt-Senior: 6-3, 320 pounds, 5.28 seconds in the 40-yard dash.

2013: 5g/5s at right guard. Career: 46g/38s.

Halapio suffered a torn pectoral muscle during weight lifting at the Gators pre-season camp. It cost him the first two games of the ’13 season. He’s also suffered back, shoulder and eye injuries this season, but has not been taken off the field since those first two games. Obviously, he’s one tough guy. Halapio is strong and plays with power. When he’s moving forward, he’s a road grader for the running game. However, Halapio lacks good foot quickness and does not move around the line of scrimmage with any type of speed. He’s shown the ability to pass protect, but his strength will be his strength as a run blocker.

#72 C Jonotthan Harrison/Redshirt-Senior: 6-3, 310 pounds, 5.22 seconds in the 40-yard dash.

2013:
7g/7s at center. Career: 46g/34s. A three-year starter, he now has 33 straight starting assignments for the Gators. He’s also played at left guard.

Harrison is a passionate player and that got the best of him earlier this season in the third quarter of the Gators game against Arkansas. He turned to an official after a play and said something that got him quickly thrown out of the game for unsportsmanlike conduct. He then got into it with coaches on the Florida sideline, sticking a finger into the chest of head coach Will Muschamp. That lack of control will be something that scouts investigate, but there are so many positives in Harrison’s profile. He’s big, strong and has just a bit of foot quickness. He’s intelligent and has been a leader on that Florida offensive line for some time. Harrison is just another Florida center that’s drawing interest from the NFL, like the Pouncey brothers that came before him. His opening punch is stout, but he seems to be knocked off balance because he’s not bending his knees, rather he’s bending at the waist.

Tight end Arthur Lynch (left) and quarterback Aaron Murray are the important talents in the Georgia offense

Georgia

#88 TE Arthur Lynch/Redshirt-Senior: 6-4 ½ , 254 pounds, 4.82 seconds in the 40-yard dash.

2013: 7g/6s, 14 catches, 212 yards 15.1-yard average, 2 TDs. Career: 46g/21s, 40 catches, 660 yards, 16.5-yard average, 5 TDs.

Lynch is out of Dartmouth, Massachusetts and decided to south to play in Athens because of the competition and quality of play in the SEC. He got time on the field during his true freshman season, but then redshirted the next year because the Bulldogs had a deep depth chart at the position. He began a starter in 2012 and showed his athletic ability as a receiver. He’s not especially fast or quick, but he’s able to get open with his big body and a real feel for coverage. As a blocker, Lynch has good ability, comes off the snap quickly and latches on to a defender and seldom lets go. His hands as a receiver are reliable, but he’ll need to work more on catching only with his hands. In this day when pass catching TEs are what NFL teams are looking for, Lynch is more of a classic TE, as a receiver and blocker. He will be 24 years old in June 2014.

#11 QB Aaron Murray/Redshirt-Senior: 6-0½, 208 pounds, 4.84 seconds in the 40-yard dash.

2013: 7g/7s, 139 of 224 (62.1%), 1,938 yards, 17 TD passes, 6 INTs, 3 fumbles/2 lost, 276.9 yards per game. 4 TD passes vs. LSU and South Carolina.

Career: 48g/48s, 835 of 1,355 (61.6%), 12,029 yards, 8.9 yards per attempt, 112 TD passes, 38 INTs; 233 runs for 210 net yards, 9 TD rushes.

Those 112 scoring throws is a school record. He has already set the SEC’s all-time mark in Total Offense (12,327) and Passing Yards (12,029), pushing past previous record holder Florida QB Tim Tebow. Currently, he ranks second in career TD passes for a SEC quarterback; the record is 114 by Danny Wuerffel (Florida 1993-96). Murray has 112 TD passes entering the Florida game. He’s attempting to become only the third quarterback to throw for 3,000 yards or more in four seasons. He’s trying to join Hawaii’s Timmy Chang and Kellen Moore from Boise State in the record book. Murray is 32-16 as starting quarterback for the Bulldogs. He’s out of Tampa, Florida’s Plant High School. He maintained a 4.0 GPA during his five years at Georgia and graduated with his degree in psychology in May ’12, and last season and this one he’s been taking classes toward a doctorate in the industrial-organizational psychology program. Murray considered leaving school last year and entering the NFL Draft, but he made the decision to stay at Georgia in hopes of winning a national championship. He’s ranked among the top 5 to 7 quarterbacks that will be in the 2014 NFL Draft. Scouts are concerned about his lack of size and the fact at times he’s had trouble with his passes being knocked down at the line of scrimmage. But he’s very smart, has a strong work ethic and his leadership skills are top-notch. Murray has been helped by playing in a pro-style offense at Georgia.

#56 DE Garrison Smith/Senior: 6-3, 299 pounds, 5.02 seconds in the 40-yard dash.

2013: 7g/7s, 35 tackles, 3.5 tackles for loss, 1.5 sacks. Career: 42g/17s, 117 tackles, 9.5 tackles for loss, 2.5 sacks, 13 quarterback pressures, 1 recovered fumble

Began the season as the only senior starter on the Georgia defense, Smith is out of Douglass High School in Atlanta, where he was highly rated as a senior. In the Bulldogs 3-4 defense, he’s been playing the five-technique DE spot and has shown greater ability to make plays inside than on the edge. Smith has only in the last two years really been able to make a big contribution to the Bulldogs defense. He’s not gifted with great speed or explosion, but he plays smart football and his motor never stops. Smith also has great intangibles – academic honors and conference/school honor rolls. He participate in the 2013 NFL/NCAA Student-Athlete Life Skills Roundtable designed to be a forum for college players to discuss the resources and support that they need in order to meet their personal and professional goals. He was also named a recipient of Georgia Athletic Achievement Award for exhibiting intense focus and displaying a marked improvement in the classroom.

#68 RG Chris Burnette/Redshirt-Senior: 6-2, 315 pounds, 5.23 seconds in the 40-yard dash.

2013: 7g/7s at right guard. Career: 31g/31s at right guard.

Burnette is a 3-year starter for UGA, all of those at right guard. Physically, he’s stocky and squatty and while he does not possess great foot quickness, he shows the ability to move laterally and he does a good job of latching on to opponents and not letting go. He’s got very strong hands. He missed 2 games in 2011 because of a knee injury and 2 games in 2012 due to a torn labrum in his left shoulder that required surgery after the season. He ended up playing the second half of the season with the dislocated shoulder that kept popping out of its socket. Intelligence and leadership traits are through the roof. Burnette graduated in December 2012 with his degree in finance and he’s been taking classes in the MBA program at Georgia since, focusing in on finance and risk management. He’s one of two student-athlete representatives on the UGA .Athletic Board. Burnette earned one of the team’s David Jacobs Awards as a player who by example portrays courage, spirit, character and determination. He’s been named repeatedly to the SEC Academic Honor Roll and Athletic Director’s Honor Roll. He was inducted into UGA’s Student-Athlete Leadership Academy known as L.E.A.D. He was named one of 10 finalists for the 2013 Arthur Ashe Jr. Sports Scholar Award. In May, Burnette married his girlfriend of 3 years Arielle Haynes.

#64 LG Dallas Lee/Redshirt-Senior: 6-4, 295 pounds, 5.18 seconds in the 40-yard dash.

2013: 7g/6s at left guard. Career: 32g/27s, with 25 at LG and 2 starts at RG.

He does not have the bulk of many college guards these days, and he’s gotten the job done with his quickness more than power. Some scouts think he’s better suited to move to center in the NFL. Lee missed the last part of 2011 season when he suffered a broken right fibula playing against Florida and missed 7 games. Going into that season, he struggled with a respiratory problem that doctors were unable to diagnose, but left him unable to maintain any type of physical exercise. Eventually doctors found a drug that alleviated his lung problems and he was able to get back to conditioning for football. His younger brother Dillon is a sophomore linebacker for the Alabama Crimson Tide.

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