It's tough to single out just one person for a team's offensive woes, after all there are eleven men on the field. But when it is the starting center firing nearly a dozen snaps to the feet of the quarterback,
Florida starting center Mike Pouncey was criticized by fans and critics alike for the double-digit bad or mishandled snaps. The miscues were just the icing on the cake in a horrendous showing by Florida's offense. In the first three quarters, Florida gained only 26 total yards, lost three fumbles, and turned the ball over on downs twice; hardly the typical showing of an Urban Meyer offense.
"I didn't imagine the offense's incompetence that we experienced today," Meyer said after the game.
Pouncey wasted no time trying to fix the problem, and seems confident that it will not happen again.
"It's something I wish I worked on before, but I'm glad it happened at game one instead of when we're up at Tennessee or coming up this week,"Pouncey said Tuesday morning.
He took his first step toward clearing his mind and restoring his confidence by joining quarterback John Brantley for an 11 a.m. snap workout Sunday. Pouncey said there were no issues then or at Sunday night's practice.To help, Pouncey is enhancing his grip by moving his hand further up the ball in order to deliver the ball tighter and faster. He will also carry a towel to limit slipperiness.
Pouncey already has big shoes to fill at the center position, his brother Maurkice Pouncey was the starting center before him and has recently claimed the starting job with the Pittsburgh Steelers. According to Pouncey, his big brother has offered some advice and encouraged him to put the game behind him.
Florida benefited from a defense that forced four interceptions, including one pick-six from Janoris Jenkins. They may not be able to count on such errors from South Florida to keep the Gators in the game. If Florida expects to keep from being upset against their in-state rivals, center Mike Pouncey will need to snap out of this funk.