Gators suspend Dunker, part ways with three
For three of his teammates, their time with the team is over.
Coach Will Muschamp suspended Dunker on Friday following his arrest for allegedly stealing a scooter. Muschamp made the announcement two days after Dunker was charged with a third-degree felony.
Muschamp suspended Dunker, a redshirt freshman expected to compete for a starting job this spring, from all team activities until “we get more information.”
“Once we get a little more information, we’ll move forward,” Muschamp said. “But he’s suspended from the team at this time. We’ll address that further when I know more.”
Dunker’s attorney said Thursday that his client paid $600 for the scooter and had no idea it had been reported stolen. The State Attorney’s Office is investigating the case and will decide whether to proceed with the charges.
Dunker likely will end up getting reinstated. That won’t happen for defensive end Kendric Johnson, receiver Stephen Alli and offensive lineman Tommy Jordan. Muschamp is parting ways with all three of them.
Johnson and Alli, both fourth-year juniors, are scheduled to graduate this spring and will no longer be on scholarship. Jordan, meanwhile, is applying for medical exemption because of a shoulder injury.
“We appreciate those guys’ contributions,” Muschamp said.
Getting rid of them frees up more scholarships heading into the final few weeks of recruiting.
Two starting offensive linemen, guard Jon Halapio and right tackle Chaz Green, had surgery. So did linebacker Neiron Ball and punt Kyle Christy.
Halapio had arthroscopic knee surgery. Green and Ball had arthroscopic ankle surgery. And Christy had shoulder surgery.
“All of those guys will be able to take part in spring,” Muschamp said. “I just don’t know how much at this point.”
Muschamp also addressed several recent departures.
Defensive coordinator Dan Quinn left Florida on Thursday to take the same position with the NFL’s Seattle Seahawks.
“That’s probably the only job he would have left here for because of his relationship with John Snyder, the general manger at Seattle, and his relationship with (coach) Pete Carroll,” said Muschamp, who promoted linebacker coach D.J. Durkin to coordinator.
Four juniors also made the move to the next level.
Safety Matt Elam, defensive Sharrif Floyd, Linebacker Jelani Jenkins and tight end Jordan Reed all declared for the draft shortly after Florida’s 33-23 loss to Louisville in the Sugar Bowl.
“At the end of the day, this is a family decision and it’s a personal decision,” Muschamp said. “It’s not mine or the University of Florida’s, and we support them 100 percent. No one understands the situations these guys are in and the circumstances in which they are basing their decisions on. … Our doors are always open for those guys.”