Tuesday July 30, 2013A look at those behind Gators QB Driskel on depth chart
Updated: 5:34pm, July 30
Updated: 5:34pm, July 30
Backup quarterbacks Tyler Murphy (10) and Skyler Mornhinweg will earn extra work early in camp.
GAINESVILLE, Fla. – Jeff Driskel’s offseason has been an eventful one.
Besides attending classes and team workouts, Driskel was drafted by the Boston Red Sox in June’s amateur draft.
Driskel later signed as a 29th-round pick as a security blanket should football not pan out the way he envisions.
Driskel also attended the Manning Passing Academy camp earlier this month to serve as a counselor and went to SEC Football Media Days with Florida coach Will Muschamp and teammates Dominique Easley and Jon Halapio.
On Tuesday Driskel had to go to UF Health Shands Hospital for an event he would have soon skipped: appendectomy surgery.
“Jeff had acute appendicitis and fortunately the medical staff caught it very quickly,” said Muschamp. “His surgery went well and how long he is out will be determined by how his body responds, which could be two weeks.”
Firmly entrenched as the Gators’ starting quarterback, barring any setbacks, Driskel should be back in time to participate in fall camp and for Florida’s season opener Aug. 31 against Toledo. He will not be available when camp opens Friday.
The junior from Oviedo passed for 1,646 yards, 12 touchdowns and five interceptions as a sophomore and expects to do more in the second year in offensive coordinator Brent Pease’s offense as the offense’s leader.
For now Driskel must recover, which raised the obvious question after Tuesday’s announcement: Who will be Florida’s quarterback in camp until Driskel returns?
Redshirt junior Tyler Murphy is listed No. 2 on the depth chart and redshirt freshman Skyler Mornhinweg is third on the depth chart. To read more about the two backups, here is a story I wrote on Murphy and Mornhinweg during spring practice.
Meanwhile, another player the Gators added at quarterback since last season is 23-year-old Chris Wilkes.
Wilkes played at Dr. Phillips High in Orlando and has spent the past five years playing professional baseball as a 22nd-round draft pick of the San Diego Padres.
Wilkes turns 24 in September and signed with Ole Miss coming out of high school in 2008 before opting to pursue a professional baseball career.
In the meantime, the Gators give the other quarterbacks on the roster an opportunity to take snaps and wait on Driskel’s return.