Florida QB Jeff Driskel signs with Boston Red Sox
Florida Gators quarterback Jeff Driskel was unexpectedly drafted by the Boston Red Sox last month, and the junior now has a backup plan in case football doesn’t work out.
Driskel was selected in the 29th round by the Sox and confirmed over Twitter Thursday that he signed with the team:
Yes I signed with the Red Sox. Nothing changes. I am still a full time student athlete at UF, fully committed to playing football. #GoGators
— Jeff Driskel (@jeffdriskel) July 4, 2013
Though Driskel’s mother told the Orlando Sentinel that her son hadn’t done anything since being drafted, his father confirmed to the paper that his son signed.
“Heck yeah he signed,” Jerry Driskel said. “If football doesn’t work out, he’ll play baseball, but he’s still playing football [at Florida next season].”
Driskel is a top athlete and helped lead Florida to an 11-2 season last year. He threw for 1,646 yards while rushing for 408. He accounted for 16 touchdowns (12 passing/four rushing).
Driskel has not played baseball since his senior season at Hagerty High School in 2011. Scouts reportedly told Driskel’s high school coach that the quarterback had first-round talent. This story from Gator Zone describes how Driskel played baseball in Japan growing up and traveling baseball as he got older. At one point in high school, Driskell supposedly hit a 477-foot home run. Perfect Game even clocked his fastball at 94 mph.
After reading all that about him, I’m wondering why Driskel didn’t just pursue baseball instead of football. But based on this tweet from last month, it sounds like Driskel really put baseball out of his mind:
Got drafted by the Red Sox today. Did not see that coming.
— Jeff Driskel (@jeffdriskel) June 8, 2013
By signing with the Red Sox, Driskel forfeits the ability to play college baseball at Florida, but Boston now has his baseball rights.