It's all on the O-line for No. 23 Florida

By: Matt Harris Email
By: Matt Harris Email

GAINESVILLE, Fla. (AP) -- Florida returns six of its top seven offensive linemen from last season.

That could be good or bad.

The 23rd-ranked Gators were mostly mediocre up front in 2011, failing to consistently open holes for the running game and giving up almost as many sacks (23) as the offense scored touchdowns (30).

The result was a 7-6 season -- Florida barely avoided its first losing season since 1979 -- and then some major offseason changes aimed at rebuilding the trenches.

Coach Will Muschamp hired Tim Davis to replace Frank Verducci, who followed former offensive coordinator Charlie Weis to Kansas, and completely revamped the team's weight-lifting program in hopes of getting bulkier and brawnier linemen.

The first test comes Sept. 1, when Florida hosts Bowling Green in The Swamp.


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