GAINESVILLE, Fla. (AP) – While the Florida Gators lost one weapon when Andre Debose went down with a knee injury, the team also welcomed back starting quarterback Jeff Driskel and suspended linebacker Antonio Morrison Thursday night.
Driskel missed the first week of fall practice following an appendectomy, but coach Will Muschamp expected him to return early in camp.
It had been less clear when Morrison would be back. But the Gators said Morrison rejoined the team Thursday, attending meetings and then doing side work at practice.
Morrison, a projected starter at middle linebacker, was suspended indefinitely last month following his second arrest in less than five weeks. He was arrested July 21 for allegedly barking at a police dog. The charges were dropped a few days later.
He also was arrested in May for allegedly punching a bouncer. He signed a deferred prosecution deal on that charge.
Muschamp suspended Morrison for the first two games of the season, but added last week that Morrison would return at some point during camp.
Driskel, meanwhile, was cleared by doctors to return to action Thursday, nine days after emergency surgery.
The second-year starter attended the first six days of practice even though he couldn’t participate and had been doing everything in meetings.
“It’s definitely frustrating,” Driskel said last week. “But injuries happen. It’s part of life. I’m starting to feel better already. We’ll see. Recovery time they said it varies for everybody. We’re not going to rush anything. But I don’t think I’m going to miss too much.”
Driskel started 12 games last season, completing 64 percent of his passes for 1,646 yards and 12 touchdowns. He was the team’s second-leading rusher, finishing with 413 yards and four scores. He also broke the school record for rushing yards in a game with 177 against Vanderbilt.
In other injury news, freshman linebacker Matt Rolin reportedly tore the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee during practice Wednesday. It was the same knee he had surgery on in January. Florida officials also declined comment on the injury, but Rolin tweeted that “Some things in life just aren’t fair.”
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