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SEC Recruiting Headlines – 1/31/12

1. Offensive lineman Kevin McCoy is the latest commit for Vanderbilt’s class of 2012.

2. Quarterback Jeremy Liggins chose LSU because he’s “used to winning.”

3. Here’s a nice story on Dorial Green-Beckham that is worth your time.

4. It’s just another year of incredible recruiting for Alabama coach Nick Saban.

5. Coach Urban Meyer is feeling “refreshed” at Ohio State. He will battle SEC schools in recruiting.

6. There are still several prospects on Auburn’s board heading into Signing Day.

7. Linebacker Josh Harvey-Clemons will trim his list of schools to two before he announces a decision tomorrow.

8. Linebacker Markuss Eligwe has decided to postpone his announcement.

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Early Outback Bowl injury update for Florida

Content provided by Swamp Things – Gators Blog.

Florida QB/TE Jordan Reed has seven touchdowns in the Gators' past four games. (AP photo)

With about three weeks before the Florida’s Jan. 1 Outback Bowl game, the Gators have some time to get healthy. Here’s the latest injury update:

– QB/TE Jordan Reed has not practiced because of a concussion he suffered against Florida State in the final regular season game. Coach Urban Meyer said Reed “looks really good” and expected a light practice for him on Monday. “As I’ve been told, he should be fine in the bowl game,” Meyer said.

– RB Jeff Demps is still in a boot because of a stress reaction in his foot. He has not practiced but Meyer said he is hoping Demps can be available for the bowl game.

– Defensive tackle Terron Sanders will not be available after having surgery.

– DT Lawrence Marsh has a torn labrum in his hip, Meyer said.

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Gators add to injury list after loss to FSU

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Injuries only added to the misery of Florida's loss to FSU on Saturday. (Photo by Gary W. Green, Orlando Sentinel)

Adding injury to insult, Florida did not make it out of Tallahassee without more injuries. Here’s the latest on the hurt Gators after their 31-7 loss to the Seminoles:

– Backup quarterback Jordan Reed left in the third quarter with a concussion. On third-and-1, Reed dove over the pile for the conversion.

– DT Jaye Howard left the game on crutches and with a boot on his right leg. Coach Urban Meyer said he re-sprained the ankle he initially hurt against Mississippi State on Oct. 16.

– WR Omarius Hines left the game with a shoulder injury.

– Center Mike Pouncey left the game with about six minutes left in the fourth quarter. He returned without shoulder pads and said after the game that he had a chest injury. Pouncey added that he would get X-rays when the team returned to Gainesville.

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Urban Meyer calls for blue out of game vs. South Carolina

Content provided by Swamp Things – Gators Blog.

Florida wore blue uniforms for four games last year, winning them all. (Orlando Sentinel photo)

Minus the Smurf Turf, Florida is borrowing a page out of the Boise State playbook. Coach Urban Meyer is calling for a blue out, asking fans to dress in blue from head to toe. The team, for its part, will wear all blue unis and orange helmets.

Meyer said he’d like a big crowd for the No. 24 Gators’ matchup with No. 22 South Carolina. Both come in with 6-3 overall records and 4-3 marks in the SEC.

The winner of the game will play in the SEC Championship Game on Dec. 4 in Atlanta.

“I’d like to make this one go down in the books,” Meyer said. “Obviously, the football team’s gotta do their part, which is the most important one, but I’d like to see this stadium absolutely out of control. The best home field advantage in America, let’s use it to the maximum.  Unless people got something else to do, I’d love to see a couple hundred thousand people here, packed house.”

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Injuries, improvement earn more playing time for Frankie Hammond Jr.

Content provided by Swamp Things – Gators Blog.

Very quietly, Frankie Hammond Jr. turned in an standout performance last week against Georgia. Coach Urban Meyer selected Hammond, a redshirt sophomore, as one of three offensive players of the game in his 34-31 overtime win. He had three receptions for 46 yards, which seems insignificant enough until you consider that he played 70 snaps on offense and 20 more on special teams.

“He played all his special teams reps, all his offensive snaps, the plays that he made in the game,” said offensive coordinator Steve Addazio. “Really terrific to see him come back. Really, he’s a very quiet guy and he’s a real unassuming guy and just works really hard. That’s what he did before too. I think it’s a great sense of pride for him to bring value to this football team like he has, and he’s doing a great job.”

Hammond’s tumultuous path to this point goes back to a June DUI arrest that cost the receiver his scholarship. He had to meet conditions to return to the team, and is paying his own tuition this semester.

Coach Urban Meyer has said he will review Hammond’s scholarship situation after the season, but it’s clear that the receiver is working his way back into his coaches’ good graces.

“You talk about a kid that kind of came from the abyss. He made an awful choice in his life, and he’s really learning from it,” said receivers coach Zach Azzanni. “He’s come to work every day. He’s shut his mouth and he’s working really hard.”

Hammond has 11 catches for 150 yards and one touchdown this season; but like his stats in Saturday’s game, those are deceiving. Coaches have praised Hammond for his willingness to block, an attribute that has helped get him on the field.

“They always emphasize blocking on the perimeter, and  that’s one thing I’ve really tried to get good at as far as blocking,” Hammond said. “Because as far as springing Jeff and those running backs in games, I just tried to get better at blocking.”

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