Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

GATORS NOTEBOOK; Harvin's Ankle Is Improving

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

GATORS NOTEBOOK; Harvin's Ankle Is Improving

Article excerpt

Byline: MICHAEL DIROCCO

GAINESVILLE - Florida coach Urban Meyer got some good news Monday morning: Percy Harvin's injured right ankle is improving enough that he might be able to play against Alabama in Saturday's SEC championship game.

"It's very positive," Meyer said. "A lot of thumbs up, including from the player - a big thumbs up, a smile on his face."

Harvin sprained his ankle during the second quarter of UF's 45-15 rout of Florida State last Saturday. Harvin is wearing a protective boot, and Meyer said Harvin is still questionable for the SEC title game.

The plan is to keep Harvin in the boot until late in the week and see how much he can do, Meyer said.

"He's doing everything he can possibly do, and our training staff's the best in college football," Meyer said. "That's all positive. The negative is it's a sprained ankle and we know what sprained ankles mean."

Harvin is UF's leading receiver (35 catches, 595 yards, seven TDs) and second-leading rusher (538 yards, nine TDs). He has scored at least one touchdown in 14 consecutive games.

The Gators would miss his speed and elusiveness on the artificial turf of the Georgia Dome. Harvin had a big game in UF's 38-28 victory over Arkansas in the 2006 SEC title game. He was named the game's MVP after rushing for 105 yards and one touchdown and catching five passes for 62 yards and another score. Both of his touchdowns came on big plays - a 67-yard run and a 37-yard pass.

"He plays well in this game," Meyer said. "He made that very clear to me a couple thousand times in the last two days."

Meyer said offensive coordinator Dan Mullen will put together two game plans, one with Harvin and one without. Even if Harvin can't do much, just having him on the field makes a difference, Meyer said.

"The biggest thing you notice is when you play him, when he's lined up somewhere, the whole defense kind of [focuses on Harvin]," Meyer said. "That's opened up some other things for us. …

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