This time, Mark Thompson will run silently.
Thompson, the senior running back for the University of Florida, entered talking last year. He was going to have 1,000 yards by the Georgia game, remember? He was going to kick the doors open in the SEC.
It didn’t quite turn out that way.
Thompson, a second-team junior college All-American at Dodge City Community College, finished the regular season with only 299 yards rushing a year ago.
“I would say last year did motivate me and humble me,” Thompson said. “I made some predictions, I said some things. I was saying a lot before even stepping on the field. Yes, it humbled me a lot. And this year I’m just looking forward to my progress from year one to year two and I will have a lot of focus.”
Thompson said he is better prepared this season.
“Hey, just get on the field, make some film for the NFL guys to look at and get some stock to my name,” he said. “I’m headed in the right direction. I’m not heading backward, I’m not taking any steps back. I’m very, very ready to see what’s in store for me these next few months.”
“I had some hiccups learning, not only football, but things off the field as well. I could have had a way better first year in all aspects of being at the University of Florida. But, you make the biggest transition from year one to year two, so I’m looking forward to it.”
Thompson said the low point last season was being suspended from the Georgia game after being cited for possession of marijuana the Thursday before the game.
“Definitely, missing that Georgia game. It hurt,” he said. “Growing up, that was the main game. I was always like, ‘Florida-Georgia, I got to watch this’. So not being able to play in that game really hurt, and it really made me realize, ‘Hey, I’m not doing the right thing, let me step back and really re-evaluate everything I’m doing, and stay on the right track’.”