In order to make sure Florida Gators-related news stories don't fall through the cracks, once or twice a week The Silver Lining will take on a "news and notes" format to keep you up-to-date with the latest goings on in the world of University of Florida athletics.
Looking to have charges filed against both Florida sophomore defensive tackle Dominique Easley and former Alabama cornerback Reggie Myles for the alleged altercation they got in during the early morning of Oct. 2, the University Police Department sent State Attorney Bill Cervone sworn complaints last week. Cervone on Thursday dismissed the case against both men, noting that "virtually everyone involved has provided contradictory information" and that "almost everyone involved has behaved badly in some way." He continued, "Any harm to either party is in essence canceled out by the harm to the other party. To use an appropriate analogy, I am therefore calling off setting penalties and declining to file any criminal charges." Easley has not yet nor is expected to miss any game action due to Myles's accusation.
In another instance of settling a legal issue, Gators freshman cornerback Marcus Roberson accepted deferred prosecution for the underage drinking charge he was saddled with in Sept. Roberson will perform 10 hours of community service and pay a total of $150 - $50 to the court and $100 to a charity. Roberson has not missed any time for his brush with the law; he has started all eight games for Florida and has 20 tackles on the season. He also has a fumble recovery and caught his first career interception last week against Georgia.
Now an assistant coach with the Miami Dolphins, former Gators wide receiver Ike Hilliard learned Thursday that he will be honored by the Southeastern Conference as a member of its 2011 Football Legends Class. Hilliard and 11 other former players will be recognized during the SEC "Weekend of Champions," which takes place the same weekend as the SEC Championship game. Hilliard is in the record books at Florida with 126 catches (seventh-best), 2,214 yards (fourth-best) and 29 touchdowns (third-best). His one touchdown every 4.34 reception mark is also second in UF history. Hilliard was inducted into the University of Florida Athletic Hall of Fame in 2009 as a Gator Great after spending 12 seasons in the NFL (546 receptions, 6,397 yards, 35 TDs).
In first-round SEC Tournament action this week, Florida soccer (15-6, 7-4 SEC) took down the Georgia Bulldogs (12-6, 6-3-2 SEC) 2-0 and advanced to face eighth-seeded Alabama in the second round on Friday. Senior midfielder/forward Tahnai Annis scored both of the Gators' goals in the game and hopes to lead her team to the event's finals.
Now a member of the Baltimore Orioles, former Florida right-handed pitcher Darren O'Day was picked up by the club this week after the Texas Rangers put him on waivers following their loss in the World Series to the St. Louis Cardinals. O'Day spent his last two years in Texas and was a star for the team in 2010, recording a 2.03 ERA and 0.89 WHIP in 72 regular season appearances. Dealing with injuries all year including opening the season on the 60-day disabled list, his numbers dropped off in 2011; O'Day's ERA jumped to 5.40 and his WHIP increased to 1.32.
Gators tennis may have found its next star. According to the Naples News, junior tennis "phenom" Gordon Watson has committed to play for Florida next season and plans to sign his national letter of intent with the school next week. Over the course of his young career, Watson has held national USTA ratings including No. 1 in Boys 12s and 14s and No. 2 in Boys 16s. He plans to play right away with the Gators and hopes to be in the No. 5 or No. 6 position at the start of the 2012-13 season.
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