Florida quarterback John Brantley told Will Muschamp after he suffered a sprained right ankle in a loss to Alabama on Oct. 1 that he “wanted to get back for Georgia,” the Gators coach said Monday.
Muschamp labeled the fifth-year senior as “probable” to return as starter Saturday in Jacksonville and said he was expected to practice in a limited role Monday.
“We feel like John will be ready to go for the game,” Muschamp said. “We expect his reps to increase as the week grows. … I fully expect him to continue to progress through the week unless we hit something that we’re not predicting. I fully expect him to be fine.”
The Georgia game is “important to John,” Muschamp said. “His dad and uncle were both Gators, they understand the importance of this game. There is no question that he has really pinpointed trying to get back for this game.”
Brantley has passed for 942 yards with five touchdowns with three interceptions in five games while completing 64.7 percent of his passes.
“When he’s out there, obviously he’s their playmaker,” Georgia nose guard John Jenkins said.
Brantley did not practice last week, but did throw on the practice field.
“If you really look at the first four-and-a-half ballgames, he was playing very well,” Muschamp said.
With freshmen Jacoby Brissett and Jeff Driskel replacing Brantley, the Gators have scored one touchdown and scored 17 total points in the past 10 quarters.
“Certainly, getting him back is going to be a huge psychological shock for our football team — I really believe that,” Muschamp said.
Mitchell’s hamstring again?
Malcolm Mitchell, Georgia’s leading receiver, returned to practice Monday for the first time since pulling a hamstring against Tennessee on Oct. 8, but the freshman left drills early in practice in the portion open to the media.
Georgia provided no information on whether Mitchell had a setback with the injury or returned to practice.
Director of sports medicine Ron Courson talked to Mitchell, who was walking on the side.
Coach Mark Richt did not meet with reporters after practice. He wasn’t asked on his radio show Monday night directly about Mitchell’s status for Saturday.
Mitchell has 25 catches for 438 yards and three touchdowns.
Boykin expected to play Saturday
Safety Bacarri Rambo sprained his left big toe at the end of the game against Vanderbilt on Oct. 15, but expects to play Saturday.
The junior returned to practice Monday, but the injury kept him down on the field when things got heated between the players and coaches after the 33-28 Georgia win over the Commodores.
“I’m kind of glad I wasn’t in there because I know me, I probably would have hit somebody or something,” Rambo said. “Nah, I’m just playing.”
Rambo injured the toe when he jumped up and said he came down on it wrong on the second to last play of the game. Rambo said he did everything in Monday’s full-contact practice.
“It didn’t really slow me down at all,” Rambo said.
Jones a semifinalist for Butkus Award
Jarvis Jones’ first season for Georgia has landed him as one of 12 semifinalists for the Butkus Award for nation’s top linebacker.
The redshirt sophomore from Columbus, a transfer from Southern California, leads Georgia with four sacks and 10 tackles for loss and is second on the team with 39 tackles. Finalists will be announced November 22 and a winner on Dec. 7.
This and that
Georgia’s homecoming game on Nov. 5 against New Mexico State is set for a 12:30 p.m. kickoff and will be shown on CSS. … Cornerback Brandon Boykin missed practice Wednesday because he was getting work done on teeth that were loosened on a kickoff return against Mississippi State. “I got them back straight and set and I got my smile back without the braces,” said Boykin, who also had a root canal. “A lot of stuff for that kicker. He hit me. He got me good.” … Inside linebacker Christian Robinson said he “was able to go to another gear today I felt for the first time,” since he missed two games with a foot injury. “Not trying to baby my foot or anything, but just running and not worrying anymore.” …Saturday’s captains: offensive tackle Cordy Glenn, center Ben Jones and defensive ends Abry Jones and DeAngelo Tyson.