UF’s Cleveland likely out vs. LSU with high-ankle sprain
Published on Monday, 10/2/17, at 1:53 p.m. Eastern.
According to Jim McElwain’s remarks at Monday’s presser, Florida star sophomore wide receiver will most likely miss Saturday’s SEC showdown vs. LSU at The Swamp in Gainesville.
With junior WR Antonio Callaway suspended since August and unlikely to ever return, Cleveland has emerged as Florida’s top WR and one of best young wideouts in the nation. However, he sustained a high-ankle sprain in the second half of this past Saturday’s 38-24 win over Vanderbilt as a nine-point home favorite.
Cleveland put his name into UF lore forever with his game-winning, 63-yard, walk-off TD catch from Feleipe Franks on the final play of a Week 2 win over Tennessee by a 26-20 count. He already had etched his name into Gator history with last year’s 98-yard TD catch from Austin Appleby that was the catalyst — along with a large-and-in-charge goal-line stand in the final seconds — in Florida’s epic 16-10 win at LSU to lock up the SEC East in Baton Rouge.
Cleveland has made 15 receptions for 326 yards and two TDs, averaging 21.7 yards per catch. He also had a big kickoff return that was crucial in setting up a short TD drive in the fourth quarter of the win over UT. Cleveland has 21 touches for 450 all-purpose yards.
As of Monday afternoon, most books had the Gators installed as 3.5 or four-point home favorites against the Tigers, who fell to 3-2 after dropping a 24-21 decision to Troy as 20.5-point home favorites this past Saturday night.
Before Cleveland’s status was downgraded from ‘questionable’ to ‘doubtful,’ many shops had UF favored by 5.5 or six points late Sunday night. LSU star RB Derrius Guice is ‘questionable’ after missing the Troy game.
Florida has won 13 of its 14 home games during McElwain’s tenure and has yet to drop an SEC contest at The Swamp on his watch.
The Gators have won three in a row since losing their season opener to Michigan at Jerry World. They take a 3-0 SEC record into the LSU showdown.