A Sun Blog

Gators Gone Pro

Tracking former UF athletes through their professional sports careers

Earnest goodbye to The Gainesville Sun

After 10 years, it’s time to bid a very bittersweet farewell to The Gainesville Sun. I recently accepted a job in production at ESPN in Bristol, CT. I’ll get the chance to write behind the scenes and blog. It’ll be hard to move away from Gainesville, where I was born and raised. It’ll also be difficult to trade the sun for the snow, which I’ve never seen in my life. I just wanted to say thanks to Sports Editor Arnold… Read More »

Gillislee grateful for chance as Dolphins camp begins

Another NFL offseason has proven itself to be an inescapable black hole for stars or potential stars. But not all get devoured like Aaron Hernandez, Titus Young, etc., leaving behind nothing except another unceremonious story to read. They shouldn’t eclipse those players that use the hottest time of year to shine the brightest in the fall. And running back Mike Gillislee, with his down-to-earth demeanor, seems poised to do just that with the Dolphins as they begin training camp in… Read More »

Dunlap’s deal a sign of NFL’s changing times

He’s not great against the run. He’s yet to play a full season in the NFL. Bengals defensive end Carlos Dunlap has received criticism about what he can’t do, but there’s no question about what he can do. And that just so happens to be the main thing defenses are looking for in today’s NFL. Get to the quarterback. That’s why despite his shortcomings, Cincinnati signed the 6-foot-6, 280-pound pass-rushing menace to a six-year, $40 million extension on Monday. Dunlap… Read More »

Tebow’s signing with Patriots filled with irony

We thought we had possibly seen the last of Tim Tebow. There’s no doubt some in the New York Jets organization believed the same thing. It turns out the Jets may be seeing him twice a year. That’s because their AFC East rivals, the New England Patriots, are expected to sign Tebow and see him at minicamp on Tuesday, according to ESPN sources. The network’s Ed Werder couldn’t release details of Tebow’s contract, but he said the Patriots did bring… Read More »

Haslem key again for sluggish Heat in pivotal Game 5

It was halftime, and the Heat needed an igniter. The defending champs didn’t need to sweat their 44-40 deficit as much as their lackluster sense of urgency in an Eastern Conference final that was tied 2-2 and headed back to Indiana for Game 6. LeBron James, likely feeling like he was back in his days as a Cavalier, needed serious help. Luckily, Miami has loads of options in times like these. Obvious ones like Dwyane Wade or Chris Bosh. Less… Read More »

Bonner spearheads biggest wild card of NBA playoffs

The San Antonio Spurs’ ability to make it rain from long range is the biggest X-factor in this year’s NBA playoffs, and Matt Bonner is their ace. The Memphis Grizzlies got that memo in Sunday’s 105-83 Game 1 loss. Bonner is on fire from beyond the arc in these playoffs (60 percent) and after going 4-of-6 from deep in Game 1, the Grizzlies know they need a defender attached to his right shoulder cannon at all times. Only problem is,… Read More »

Jets fumble on Tebow Time

Tebow Time only lasted a New York minute. Tim Tebow arrived at the Jets’ facility on Monday morning and was told he had been cut. As if it would fly under the radar, a three-paragraph news release was sent out at 8:18 a.m. That early exit from Florham Park, N.J., serves as a microcosm for the quarterback’s one-year stint in the Big Apple. The truth is, we learned a lot more about the New York Jets than we did about… Read More »

How Gators can make an impact in NBA playoffs

Even more impressive than the fact that eight of 10 former Gators in the NBA will be playing in the NBA playoffs is the fact that each of those eight players are key contributors, if not cornerstones, to their respective teams. While The Sun’s Kevin Brockway highlighted each player that will be in action starting today, I’ll go into each first-round matchup and what role each Gator can play to help their respective teams. DAVID LEE: The All-Star forward/center always… Read More »

Nelson a good addition to Browns’ receiving corps

The last time I saw David Nelson, it was in the visitors’ locker room of the Georgia Dome in 2009. The far corner of the locker room. The only thing you could hear was the sound of Gator players slowly taking off their equipment. All other media, and the hundreds that comprised it, were already gone. They had pooled at the podium not far away to lob the easy questions to Alabama coach Nick Saban, who had led the program… Read More »

Brewer clutch as Nuggets extend NBA’s other streak

Corey Brewer spiked the ball, then roared at midcourt. Fitting that his primal scream came on top of a logo with pickaxes since it was Brewer who dug the Denver Nuggets out of an improbable hole in a streak-saving 101-100 win over the Philadelphia 76ers on Thursday night. With the victory, the Nuggets extended their franchise record with a 14th straight win, a mark that would’ve ended if it weren’t for Brewer’s heroics. Denver trailed by five before the sixth-year… Read More »