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After a 21-3 win at Missouri, No. 8 Florida heads into its undefeated matchup at No. 6 LSU on a down note.
On Monday, Florida announced that starting redshirt freshman quarterback Will Grier is suspended indefinitely after failing an NCAA administrated drug test.
Grier said he took an over-the-counter supplement that "had something in it" but refused to disclose the specific substance.
"I did not check (it) with the medical staff," Grier said in a tearful apology. "I really hope people can learn from this, learn from my mistake. I'm really sorry to everyone."
The penalty is a one-year suspension, but Florida plans to appeal to have it reduced. Grier can practice with the team but is ineligible for competition until the suspension is lifted.
With Grier out, Florida will turn to sophomore quarterback Treon Harris, who started Florida's season opener against New Mexico State and has started seven games over two seasons with the Gators. McElwain said he's confident that Harris can make the throws that Grier made, but it won't be easy. In five starts, Grier led the SEC in completion percentage (65.3 percent) and passed for 1,204 yards with 10 TDs and 3 interceptions.
"We embrace moving forward as a team and as a program to have an opportunity to play in this kind of game on a Saturday night in October," McElwain said.
Florida's defense continues to play at a high-level, but will face a challenge against LSU Heisman candidate running back Leonard Fournette. The 6-foot-1, 230-pound sophomore has rushed for 1,022 yards and 12 TDs already this season.
"It will be a great challenge for our defense, to kind of see who we are," McElwain said