Florida has found its quarterback of the future.
One week after “managing” his team to an improbable win over Georgia when he only attempted six passes, Treon Harris showed his playmaking ability in the Gators’ 34–10 win at Vanderbilt. The diminutive true freshman — Harris is listed at 5-11 — completed 13-of-21 passes for 215 yards while adding 49 yards and two scores on the ground.
Harris averaged 10.2 yards on his 21 passes against Vanderbilt and is now up to an SEC-high 11.2 yards per attempt for the season. The player he replaced, Jeff Driskel, ranks last in the league with only 5.0 yards per attempt.
“We have all the confidence in him moving forward,” Florida coach Will Muschamp said after his team improved to 4–3 in the SEC. “The thing that strikes me is his maturity. He doesn’t get fazed. He’s been accurate in practice so that’s nothing that shocks me there. The maturity of carrying it to a game has been outstanding.”
The Florida coaching staff is doing its best to keep Driskel, the former starter, engaged in the offense. Driskel was on the field for five snaps Saturday night, netting 10 yards on four runs (most near the goal line) and badly misfiring on a short-passing attempting. But it’s clear this offense operates far more efficiently with Harris at quarterback. Maybe the offensive line has played better in the past two weeks — as Muschamp maintains — but it can’t be a coincidence that Florida has averaged 437 yards and 6.3 yards per play since the staff made the move at quarterback.
“He’s a special player,” says Gator All-America cornerback Vernon Hargreaves III. “As a freshman just to come in and do whatever the coach asks, whether it’s handing the ball off six times or throwing the ball however many times he did today, he does it to a high level and that’s impressive for a freshman.”