football

Gators pick up kicker

After spending the past few days at Florida, placekicker Austin Hardin of Atlanta Marist had seen enough.
Of the program. And of the school.
On Wednesday morning, Hardin committed to the Gators. He said he also had offers from Auburn, Buffalo and Tennessee.
"I went in to Coach [Will] Muschamp's office this morning and he offered," Hardin said. "I told him I was 100 percent Gator. That's where I wanted to be."
Why did Hardin, who has a 3.85 GPA, pick Florida?
"When I started getting all the offers and stuff like that, I really was looking for a combination of athletics and academics," Hardin said. "It's such a great school. I have a high GPA so it was something I wanted to carry over. I didn't want to have to choose a good football school or a good academic school. I wanted something with the combination of the two. Athletically, you can't get any better with the tradition the football team has. Even basketball and baseball - it's an all-around great school. I also really like the coaches. It just felt right."
According to Hardin, playing time should come early in Gainesville.
"They said I can come in and start right away on kickoffs," Hardin said. "At Auburn this summer, I had an 87-yard kickoff with a 4.3 hang. At Florida [camp], even with a tired leg, I was hitting 75-yard kickoffs."
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