FOUR BITS: transfer, Sugar Bowl, graduation

By Adam Silverstein
December 14, 2012

1 » Florida Gators freshman defensive back Willie Bailey, a three-star recruit out of Hallandale, FL who did not see the field in his first season with the team, has decided to transfer and pursue his college football career elsewhere. According to Bryan Holt of, who spoke with Bailey’s high school coach ($) and confirmed that the decision has been made, the transfer was a long time coming though he left still very fond of Florida. The Gators are expected to see plenty of attrition this offseason with some players transferring, others graduating with eligibility remaining and even other potentially leaving early for the NFL. The school has not yet confirmed Bailey’s transfer, and the player has not determined his future destination.

2 » It is still very early in the 2012-13 season, but Florida basketball has been turning heads with its play through seven games this campaign. The Gators are now ranked second nationally in scoring defense and third in scoring margin, meaning the team is still putting up plenty of points while holding opponents to low averages. Perhaps most impressive is that Florida has accomplished all of this without a full complement of players. Read more about what the Gators have done so far and what can be made of the team’s early non-conference success in my newest commentary for ITG.

[EXPAND CLICK TO EXPAND and read two more BITS in this post.]3 » Florida is having a tough time selling tickets to the 2013 Sugar Bowl, and a recent report from the Orlando Sentinel makes the situation seem dire. According to the Sentinel’s Edgar Thompson, who spoke with UF senior associate athletic director of communications Steve McClain, the Gators have sold just 6,500 tickets to the game despite being contracted to purchase a total of 17,500. Florida’s opponent in the game, the Louisville Cardinals, has already sold more than 14,000 tickets out of its 17,500 allotment. This is the second time in as many Sugar Bowl appearances that the Gators have struggled selling tickets. Florida only sold approximately 12,000 tickets to the 2010 contest, which was also quarterback Tim Tebow’s last game in a Gators uniform. The Southeastern Conference can buy up to 3,000 tickets out of Florida’s allotment, which means the school is still on the hook for approximately 8,000 tickets. More tickets will certainly be sold in the next two weeks, but UF will not come close to selling out of its allotment as fans prefer to save significant money and watch at home or purchase tickets closer to the game at cheaper prices due to the overwhelming inventory available. If more than 7,000 tickets go unsold after the SEC helps out, those tickets will cost the university approximately $1 million.

4 » A total of 25 former and current Gators student-athletes are set to receive their degrees during fall commencement on Dec. 15. Below are some standout names on the list, which can be viewed in full by clicking here.

David Eckstein^ – Baseball – Political Science
Daniel Pigott – Baseball – Building Construction
Jon Bostic – Football – Health Education and Behavior
Frankie Hammond, Jr. – Football, Track & Field – Telecommunication
Omarius Hines – Football – Anthropology
Omar Hunter – Football – Anthropology
Lerentee McCray – Football – Anthropology
Matt Patchan* – Football – Anthropology
Sam Robey – Football – Criminology
Caleb Sturgis – Football – Sport Management
McKenzie Barney – Soccer – Telecommunication
Erika Tymrak – Soccer – Criminology
Kathryn Williamson – Soccer – Psychology
Teresa Crippen – Swimming – Sport Management
Genevieve LaCaze – Track & Field – Applied Physiology and Kinesiology
Tangerine Wiggs – Volleyball – English

^ Eckstein (1994-97) is 37 years old.
* Patchan has a year of eligibility remaining.[/EXPAND]


  1. Phil says:

    Who else is considering a transfer? I suppose most will wait until after the Sugar Bowl..

  2. Ken (CA) says:

    Sam Robey is finally graduating? Hasn’t he been the backup center for about 15 years now?

  3. Michael Jones says:

    Sorry to hear we’ll be losing Willie Bailey. I recall hearing and reading good things about him in the Spring and Summer practices. I guess that goes with the turf in collegiate athletics, though, especially when you’re blessed with a wealth of talent like we are right now at the corner back position, not to mention the load of DB talent pledged right now in the 2013 recruiting class. I get it. I wish the kid the best of luck.

  4. Michael Jones says:

    Poor Matt Patchan. Been a tough ride for him from an injury standpoint. Would love to see the kid make it through a season injury free and see him get the chance to fulfill his potential.

  5. Michael Jones says:

    Nice article/commentary on the Gator basketball team, Adam. The debacle in Arizona was tough to watch. It’s a scenario that keeps repeating itself (i.e. See Butler game two March Madnesses ago and the Louisville Elite Eight game last year). Love Billy Donovan. Great recruiter, great ambassador for the school, great person. I just wish our teams would play smarter and with more heart down the stretch.

    Have no idea what Boynton was thinking when he launched that Erving Walker-esque streetball beyond NBA 3-pointer with about 16 seconds left on the shot clock and the Gators comfortably ahead in the waning moments. That was the beginning of yet another colossal collapse.

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