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Old 12-30-2010, 01:58 PM   #1
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Default TAMPA - Mike Pouncey will play his final game as a Florida football player on Saturda

TAMPA - Mike Pouncey will play his final game as a Florida football player on Saturday against Penn State in the Outback Bowl.

It's not how he envisioned his senior season ending when he decided last January to return without his twin brother, Maurkice. Mike figured he'd be competing for another national championship.

Instead, he suffered through five losses - the first time the Gators have lost that many regular-season games since 1988 - and season-long criticism of his move to center.

At the same time, his brother was drafted in the first round by the Pittsburgh Steelers, started every game for a team headed to the playoffs, and was announced as a Pro Bowl selection.

But Mike Pouncey says he isn't jealous and has no regrets about his decision to return to school.

"Everything happens for a reason," Pouncey said Wednesday. "We [he and his brother] talk about it all the time. I don't let stuff like that get to me. I just go out there and play football. It's been a blessing to play here, and it's been a blessing to be coached by Urban Meyer."

This season hasn't been as much of a blessing for Pouncey. There was conflict from the beginning.

First he had to yell at several freshmen - including highly touted recruits Sharrif Floyd and Dominique Easley - who were pouting and upset with the way they were being treated during preseason practices. Pouncey basically told them to shut up and remember their place, a message that had to be delivered but also a sign that the chemistry on the team wasn't as good as it needed to be.

Then came a disastrous season opener in which Pouncey had trouble with the shotgun snaps. He was off target all afternoon and sent a couple flying past quarterback John Brantley.

Since that game, Pouncey has had few troubles with snaps, but the offensive line didn't play up to expectations despite having four true or fifth-year senior starters.

The offense struggled, in part because of the line but also because Brantley wasn't a fit for the spread option offense.

Losses to Alabama, LSU, Mississippi State, South Carolina and Florida State kept the Gators from playing in the Southeastern Conference championship game for the third year in a row and ruined any chance of a BCS bowl.

Three days after UF received an invitation to the Outback Bowl, Meyer announced his resignation.

And Pouncey dealt with all of that without playing alongside his brother for the first time since they started playing organized sports.

They speak almost daily, and despite his brother's success and the knowledge that he could be playing in the NFL right now, Mike Pouncey only wished he hadn't come back for one quick moment.

"At first I did, but then now all the great news I'm getting about my draft stock I'm glad I came back," he said. "I really helped myself a lot this year."

Pouncey wouldn't elaborate on that news, but he's projected to be taken during the first three rounds. He hopes by the Steelers, so he can be reunited with his brother.

And in the first round, too.

"They tell my brother all the time they want to draft me, but they'll probably going to have the 32nd pick of the draft," Pouncey said, meaning he's picking the Steelers to win the Super Bowl.

First, however, he's playing against Penn State on Saturday, and that gives him a chance to finally do something his brother also did: finish his career with a victory.

"You want to go out a winner," Pouncey said. "That would be happy. It would obviously make everybody's year on the team."
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Old 12-30-2010, 02:04 PM   #2
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Default Re: TAMPA - Mike Pouncey will play his final game as a Florida football player on Sat

i really want a corner in the 1st but i would love to trade up in the 2nd to land Mike Pouncey. i gurentee we would get them at a discount in a few years when there contracts are up just so they can stay together
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Old 12-30-2010, 02:53 PM   #3
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Default Re: TAMPA - Mike Pouncey will play his final game as a Florida football player on Sat

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i really want a corner in the 1st but i would love to trade up in the 2nd to land Mike Pouncey. i gurentee we would get them at a discount in a few years when there contracts are up just so they can stay together
I'd like to see a corner drafted as well. I'm tired of McFadden getting beat or allowing an easy 10 yard completion.

At the same time, it would be really cool to have Mike at RG. We know he has good genes.

The line is really a couple unfortunate injuries and a right guard from being pretty decent. Plus, imagine the chemestry having twins plying right beside one another. They could anchor the line for years to come.

Ideally we could draft a CB in the first, and hopefully see Mike fall to the end of the 2nd. Or we could always trade up in the 2nd to get him.
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Old 12-30-2010, 03:04 PM   #4
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Default Re: TAMPA - Mike Pouncey will play his final game as a Florida football player on Sat

Pittsburgh is pretty militant about the way they draft. They're not going to take Pouncey just because their brothers.
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Old 12-30-2010, 04:35 PM   #5
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Default Re: TAMPA - Mike Pouncey will play his final game as a Florida football player on Sat

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Pittsburgh is pretty militant about the way they draft. They're not going to take Pouncey just because their brothers.
Thats for sure!
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Old 12-30-2010, 04:48 PM   #6
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Default Re: TAMPA - Mike Pouncey will play his final game as a Florida football player on Sat

Best case scenario: Penn State (Go Nittany Lions!) rocks his ass, his draft stock falls, and we get him in the 2nd or 3rd.

Win-Win scenario for Steelers/Penn State fans
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Old 12-30-2010, 05:17 PM   #7
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Default Re: TAMPA - Mike Pouncey will play his final game as a Florida football player on Sat

What makes anyone think there will be any decent corners left by the time the Steelers pick? They are going to pick no earlier than 24th and possibly 32nd : ) This team would be awesome with a better O-line. Hopefully Pouncey will drop in the draft because he had a less than stellar season. But he will probably be long gone by the time they reach the 48th to 64th pick. They would have to trade up for sure.
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Old 12-30-2010, 06:34 PM   #8
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Default Re: TAMPA - Mike Pouncey will play his final game as a Florida football player on Sat

Looks like the Steelers actually want to draft him.
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Old 12-30-2010, 06:39 PM   #9
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Default Re: TAMPA - Mike Pouncey will play his final game as a Florida football player on Sat

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What makes anyone think there will be any decent corners left by the time the Steelers pick? They are going to pick no earlier than 24th and possibly 32nd : ) This team would be awesome with a better O-line. Hopefully Pouncey will drop in the draft because he had a less than stellar season. But he will probably be long gone by the time they reach the 48th to 64th pick. They would have to trade up for sure.
there are almost always decent corners left at that time, its whether or not you can find them
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Old 01-01-2011, 01:29 PM   #10
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Default Re: TAMPA - Mike Pouncey will play his final game as a Florida football player on Sat

Pouncey had a great block and the RB ran in for a TD. Luckily we don't need him to snap because he's not that good at it.
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