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Freshman LB Myles Graham enjoys first spring at UF: ‘It's been a blast’

On3 imageby:Zach Abolverdi05/16/24


Ron Roberts | Florida Co-DC

Florida freshman linebacker Myles Graham, one of 16 early enrollees in January, started his second semester at UF this week. The Gators began their next phase of offseason workouts on Tuesday.

Graham was a top-100 signee in Florida’s 2024 class. As he went through winter workouts and the first week of spring camp, the transition from high school to college was a big jump — even for him.

“The speed and the intensity of the game, of the practices, of everything really. The meetings as well. Everything is just more up-tempo and it just requires a lot of attention to detail,” Graham said Wednesday during a radio interview on ESPN Gainesville.

Graham participated in the first two spring practices before undergoing back surgery for an injury that he had coming into college. Florida coach Billy Napier said it should not be a long-term issue, and he expects Graham back for fall practice.

“I’m someone that’s gonna give relentless effort for the university. Just give it my all for the blue and orange,” said Graham, the son of former Florida running back Earnest Graham.

Graham plays the Will LB spot behind returning starter Shemar James, a junior. James and senior Derek Wingo were both non-contact this spring, but they helped Graham get acclimated early on.

“It’s been a blast. I got some great guys to look up to in Derek Wingo and Shemar James,” Graham said. “Those guys have really, really helped me out and mentored me. They’re helping me learn the playbook and learn the ropes of what it means to be a college football linebacker in the SEC. It’s not easy and it’s going to take some work. But everybody gets the opportunity to play and get on the field, so it’s really just a matter of what you do with it.”

Graham had a coaching change at his position after he signed with Florida, as Jay Bateman left to become the defensive coordinator at Texas A&M. Bateman was replaced by Ron Roberts, who serves Florida’s Co-DC and executive head coach in addition to inside linebackers coach.

Graham has enjoyed playing for Roberts and Napier so far.

“They’re the best coaches. Honestly, they just want the best for you on and off the field,” Graham said. “Coach Roberts is a tenacious coach that’s really going to get after you, but he’s a coach that cares about the academics and everything about you as well.”

RELATED: Myles Graham impressing his position coach, fellow Florida LBs

Despite being a legacy recruit, Graham said his father didn’t try to talk up the Gators. He encouraged his son to find the school that was right for him, and UF just ended up being his choice. Graham was the first commit of Florida’s 2024 recruiting class.

“He was not stressing or pushing the University of Florida at all, despite what most people think,” Graham said of his father, who ranks fifth in school history in career rushing yards (3,065). “He wanted it to be my decision. He didn’t care anywhere it was. He wanted me to identify what was important to me and go where that was. That’s what I did, and it happened to be University of Florida, where he played.

“It was just my dream school, man. Just growing up watching the orange and blue and everything that it represents, it just touched my heart. Everything about the university, I love it. My dad played here, so the legacy, that played a role into it. But they just did a really good job of recruiting me and showing me that my value is much more than a football player here. And off the field and after football here is like no other.”

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