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Florida Gators Football Recruiting

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ESPN SEC ‏@ESPN_SEC 18m18 minutes ago

Recapping Florida's national signing day http://es.pn/23UI0bp

--- Quote ---McElwain's second recruiting class at Florida received mixed reviews from fans. While the Gators added 12 very important early enrollees, this staff didn't exactly close as well as it would have liked. One thing's for sure, though, this staff hit the offensive side of the ball very hard.

...The biggest get was former Houston commit Tyrie Cleveland, who was the nation's No. 4 receiver and flipped to the Gators on national signing day.
--- End quote ---

び Big 10 び ‏@gloryboy_Sean 50m50 minutes ago Norland, FL

Once you commit you're no longer popular bc you're no longer news. Guys with egos struggle with this & guys without could care less.🏈

-- Vosean Joseph

In McElwain’s first full recruiting cycle, the Gators had the core of their 2016 class in place by mid-December with commitments from 23 of their 25 signees, including a school-record 12 early enrollees.

--- Quote ---UF coaches visited more than 40 recruits for 2017 and 2018 in January.

“We already have great momentum on ’17 and ’18,” McElwain said. “I’m really excited about that, just the way we were able to kind of get an earlier start with all the guys and build relationships.”

McElwain did not have the luxury of an early start on 2016 prospects. He was handicapped in recruiting when he became Florida’s coach in December 2014.

UF only had eight commitments with less two months remaining in the 2015 cycle...
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Michael Carvell ‏@Carvell_AJC 2m2 minutes ago

Gators lead for a pair of Top247 recruits http://sec.news/1SWhhrv

--- Quote ---CB Latavious Brini (Hialeah, Fla.) and DT Aubrey Solomon (Leesburg, Ga.) both attended Florida’s Junior Day on Jan. 30 and put the Gators on top after their visits.

“I liked it, I really did,” Solomon said of the trip. “They really made me feel welcomed. To me, they sit on top right now. I really like what they did. I just like what they do, so they’re at the top for sure.”

Kentucky was the leader for Brini heading into his visit to UF, but that changed after getting offered personally by Jim McElwain.

“Right now, it’s Florida,” Brini said when asked for his leader. “The coaches had great energy. The staff was great. It’s the type of staff you can talk to and have a great conversation with.

“The head coach sat us down, talked and said, ‘You know you got this offer. You’re a great student and I love your highlight.’ I was like, ‘oh DBU,’ that’s all I thought running through my head. Florida is great in defense and great in education.”

Brini has gained eight more offers since receiving one from Florida, including Arkansas, LSU and Miami. Most sites have yet to rate him, but he’s now a four-star recruit and the nation’s No. 15 cornerback on 247Sports.

Solomon is also the 15th-ranked prospect at his position by 247Sports, but he’s the No. 5 defensive tackle in the industry-generated composite rankings...

Both Brini and Solomon told SEC Country they’re taking their recruitments slow and will wait to decide.
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Zach Abolverdi ‏@ZachAbolverdi 2h2 hours ago

Gators working to flip five-star #Auburn commit http://sec.news/1XEYnUW

--- Quote ---Florida is trying to flip five-star prospect Calvin Ashley, who committed to Auburn last spring. The nation’s No. 2 offensive tackle from Orlando (Fla.) First Academy visited UF on Saturday.

“It was great,” Ashley said. “I got here, the coaches welcomed me in. It’s just great to be back here. It’s a short ride.

“I really like Florida and the facilities. It’s just beautiful. They’ve got a great indoor facility they just built.”

Ashley described this trip to Florida as “different” than his previous ones. The 6-foot-6, 330-pounder said he got a better feel for the program and spent more one-on-one time with Gators coach Jim McElwain and his staff.

“Coach Mac, we sat down and talked about life and just football and being here at Florida, new things they’ve got going,” he said. “And they want to win a national championship.

“I got to sit down and talk to the coaches more, got to go through plays and stuff, got to actually talk to the whole coaching staff individually. It was a great thing to do with my parents.”
--- End quote ---

Spent time with O-line coach Mike Summers, the former Razorback O-line coach who happens to be the son-in-law of former UK basketball coach Joe B. Hall.

New Smyrna Beach (Fla.) safety Jaleel McRae, a rising sophomore, committed to the Gators on Saturday after his visit. He was offered by UF coach Jim McElwain.

He is Florida’s first verbal commitment for 2019.

ESPN SEC ‏@ESPN_SEC 2h2 hours ago

Florida coach Jim McElwain recruiting Q&A http://es.pn/1OTAcuZ

--- Quote ---McElwain: I think we are definitely making up ground. We struck on some pretty good guys that first year, especially for how late we got a jump on it. We landed some guys that fit some specific needs. Having a full year and now another cycle with a crew of 17’s that we were able to start on as far as identification more than anything and where our roster needed some holes to be filled. Obviously there were some good players here, let’s call it the way it is. That’s a good thing, but on the flip side of that we knew there was a need to bring in some numbers at certain spots. We’ve answered some of that.

I’d say the biggest thing for us was saving up those mid-year spots and being actually to put some quality players in those mid-year spots. We brought in 12 of our signing class, so half of our signing class is here for spring practice at some real need areas. That’s the exciting piece. Getting them here early, identifying who and getting them convinced to come.
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The numbers will work out for Jim. They always do.

It may be tough for the Gators to pull a top-five class this year because of numbers. Only 13 scholarships are available for 2017 at this time, so UF probably won’t sign more than 20 prospects.

--- Quote ---I do think with the potential losses on defense after next season, UF has a better chance of playing for a natty this year than in 2017. And with the titles of ’96 and ’06, maybe the Gators are due for one again.
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 Zach Abolverdi ‏@ZachAbolverdi 23h23 hours ago

Latest edition of Zach's Mail Stack http://sec.news/1ZSb3c7

--- Quote --- think these are the No. 1 targets for Florida at each position:

QB – Jake Allen (Florida commit)
RB – Adarius Lemons (North Carolina commit)
WR – Donovan Peoples-Jones
TE – Tre’ McKitty
OL – Calvin Ashley (Auburn commit)
DT – Aubrey Solomon
DE – Jarez Parks
LB – K.J. Britt
CB – Shaun Wade (Ohio State commit)
S – Xavier McKinney (Alabama commit)
ATH – Devan Barrett
--- End quote ---


--- Quote ---In-state prospects will always be the priority for the Gators, but they’re starting to show the ability to recruit nationally as well. UF coach Jim McElwain and his staff expanded Florida’s recruiting footprint in the last class, and the envelope is being pushed even more for the 2017 cycle.

In the past two years, McElwain has landed three players from both Alabama and Texas. He also signed a prospect from Mississippi and Michigan, two states that don’t typically produce players for the Gators.

“There were some guys in particular that we evaluated and felt like they were in need positions for us,” McElwain said on signing day.

During the six-year period from 2003-08, the Gators signed a total of eight players from talent-rich Texas and five players out of Alabama, many of them a by-product of Florida’s 2006 and 2008 national championships.

But in the six years following those title runs, UF signed just two Alabama prospects and zero from Texas.
--- End quote ---

Florida coaches to visit more than 300 in-state high schools this week

--- Quote ---UF coaching staff hits the road Monday for the first time in the evaluation period, and they’ll be hammering the state of Florida.

UF coach Jim McElwain wants SEC-caliber athletes in Florida to stay in their home state and play for the Gators.

“We’ve still got a long ways to go, but we’ll continue to work that in all those areas,” McElwain said of in-state recruiting on signing day. “That’s something we still need to get better at, and we’ll keep working at it.”

All nine assistants will be in a specified area each day, and they’re scheduled to visit more than 300 high schools this week to evaluate 2017, 2018 and 2019 recruits.

Here’s a breakdown of the areas they will focus on:

Monday: Central Florida and Jacksonville
Tuesday: Southwest Florida and Fort Myers, where McElwain will be speaking
Wednesday: Polk County, St. Petersburg and Tampa, where McElwain will be speaking
Thursday and Friday: South Florida and the Panhandle

On Monday, offensive coordinator Doug Nussmeier and defensive line coach Chris Rumph are attending practice at IMG Academy, where they will see the likes of five-star linebacker Dylan Moses, five-star defensive end Joshua Kaindoh, ...
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Three-star athlete Kadarius Toney became the latest recruit to give his pledge to Florida

--- Quote ---6-foot-1, 185-pounder plays quarterback for Blount High School (Eight Mile, Ala.), but committed to the Gators as an athlete. Toney holds eight reported offers and chose UF over Georgia Tech and South Carolina, among others. He becomes the fifth member of the Gators’ 2017 recruiting class and the first from outside the state of Florida.

Toney is rated as the nation’s No. 16 dual-threat quarterback and the state of Alabama’s No. 33 prospect
--- End quote ---



Gators picked up a commitment from three-star defensive tackle Jordon Scott

--- Quote ---6-foot-1, 345-pound prospect from Largo, Fla., is rated as the No. 60 defensive tackle nationally in the Class of 2017. He had reported offers from SEC counterparts Kentucky, Ole Miss and Tennessee...

McElwain now has six pledges for next year’s class.
--- End quote ---

UF landed its second defensive tackle in as many weeks Thursday when junior college prospect Javier Edwards committed to the Gators on the spot after receiving an offer.

He’s the seventh member of Florida’s 2017 class...


Jordan Pouncey’s Florida ties not enough as he commits to Notre Dame

--- Quote ---Jordan Pouncey’s cousins, Maurkice and Mike, both starred as Florida Gators, but it does not appear that the 3-star athlete from Winter Park, Fla. will be following in their footsteps.

Pouncey committed to Notre Dame on Saturday, according to reports, just days after telling SEC Country that he had no timetable for a decision.

“When I was a little kid I use to watch the movie Rudy at least once a week,” Jordan Pouncey said.

Pouncey, who plays both as a wide receiver and defensive back, is expected to play on the offensive side of the ball, according to the Rivals report. That’s the position Pouncey prefers.
--- End quote ---


--- Quote ---Elijah Blades, a 4-star cornerback from John Muir High School in Pasadena, Calif.  announced his decision on Twitter, choosing the Gators over Arizona.
--- End quote ---

Gators landed their third commitment in as many days Friday when Lakeland (Fla.) linebacker Ventrell Miller made his pledge

--- Quote ---6-foot, 227-pounder also held offers from Miami, Ole Miss, South Carolina and more than 30 other schools despite his 3-star rating.
--- End quote ---


--- Quote ---GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Since he was a kid growing up in Mississippi, playing for the Florida Gators was the goal for Quincy Lenton.

Prior to the last recruiting cycle, the Gators hadn’t signed a prep prospect from Mississippi in 13 years.

Lenton, a 3-star safety from Meridian High School, stopped the streak.

Lenton became a Gators fan during their 2006 national championship season. At the time, Mississippi State and Ole Miss had combined records of 20-48 in the last three years. So the Bulldogs and Rebels didn’t give him much to celebrate.

“I was just drawn to Florida,” Lenton said. “I loved those championship teams they had and the swag they played with. That’s also when they started becoming DBU.”

But as Lenton’s recruiting process picked up, the Bulldogs and Gators were trending in opposite directions. He committed to Mississippi State near the end of its 10-3 season in 2014. Florida fired former coach Will Muschamp that same year.

“As soon as coach (Geoff) Collins went to Florida,” Lenton said, “that caught my attention.”

His first offer came from Collins when he served as Mississippi State’s defensive coordinator. Auburn, Arkansas, Georgia, Ole Miss, Missouri and Vanderbilt all joined the race for Lenton afterward.

But playing for Collins — and the Gators —
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Michael Carvell ‏@Carvell_AJC 5m5 minutes ago

Florida TE prospect Tre’ McKitty commits to Oregon

 Josh Vitale ‏@AUBlog 13m13 minutes ago

Three-star Florida tight end Tre' McKitty (IMG Academy) commits to Oregon. Auburn had been in his final three schools along with Florida.

Florida picked up its first commitment from its Friday Night Lights recruiting event: Class of 2017 three-star linebacker James Houston

--- Quote ---Houston, from American Heritage School in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., is the Gators’ 11th commit in the Class of 2017.

Houston said he tore his ACL a few weeks ago running a route as a tight end during a 7-on-7 competition...
--- End quote ---

Gators land Florida’s No. 1 RB, Adarius Lemons

--- Quote ---Adarius Lemons, a 4-star running back from Clearwater, Fla., flipped from North Carolina to UF.

Florida now has 12 members in its 2017 class following the additions of Lemons and linebacker James Houston this weekend.
--- End quote ---

Gators landed a verbal commitment Monday from 4-star cornerback Marco Wilson from American Heritage High School in Fort Lauderdale. He chose UF over Miami, Georgia, Ohio State and Southern Cal.

--- Quote ---UF is up to 13 members in its 2017 class, and nine of them are rated 4-star prospects by at least two recruiting services.
--- End quote ---

SEC Country ‏@seccountry 5h5 hours ago

The #Gators currently have the nation's 15th ranked recruiting class for 2017, but still ranks at 8th in the #SEC.

Seven 4★'s and six 3★'s.

Ever wonder how Florida is making the numbers work?

--- Quote ---GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Florida was expected to have a smaller class size for 2017, but roster turnover may change that.

Former starting quarterback Treon Harris transferred from the program last week [possible deal related to the Title IX incident], and defensive linemen Thomas Holley and Andrew Ivie have received medical hardships.

With those developments, UF now has 17 scholarships available in this year’s recruiting cycle. That number will increase between now and signing day with additional attrition and early departures for the NFL.

Four juniors — linebacker Alex Anzalone, defensive tackle Caleb Brantley and cornerbacks Jalen Tabor and Quincy Wilson — could potentially turn pro after this season. There’s also a few more transfer candidates remaining on the roster.

It was initially thought the Gators would sign around 20 recruits in their 2017 class, but they could finish closer to a full class size of 25. Florida currently has 13 verbal commitments.
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--- Quote ---Six months away from signing day, Florida is close to meeting its major needs in the 2017 class.

Coming into this cycle, the priorities for UF were cornerback, defensive tackle, tight end, linebacker and offensive line. The Gators have now hit their needs at tight end with Saturday’s commitment of Zech Byrd and Kemore Gamble already in the fold.

By the end of this month, they could also be done at two more positions. A pair of Florida’s top cornerback targets have decision dates set for Aug. 17 (Brad Stewart) and Aug. 26 (Shawn Davis). Following a weekend trip to UF, 4-star defensive tackle Fred Hansard plans to decide any day now.

Those additions would give the Gators four cornerbacks and three defensive tackles in their class. They could use a third linebacker and a couple more offensive linemen, which they’ll likely land, but the aforementioned positions (CB, DT, TE) are the biggest priorities this year.

With 14 commitments and more scholarships available after the team’s latest attrition, Florida is able add about eight or nine recruits to the class. Expect those numbers to be filled with a wide receiver, two more O-linemen, another defensive tackle and end, a linebacker, two more cornerbacks and a safety.

For fans who care about star ratings and recruiting rankings, the Gators are doing well in both of those areas. Nine of their 14 commits are rated 4-star recruits by at least two recruiting services, an improvement from where last year’s class was at this time.

Of the Gators’ five consensus 3-star commits, four of them hold offers from at least two of these schools — Alabama, Florida State, Ole Miss and South Carolina. Houston, who committed at Friday Night Lights, has Auburn, Clemson, LSU, Michigan and Tennessee as well. He is also Florida’s only in-state pledge with offers from both FSU and Miami.

UF coach Jim McElwain and his staff made in-state recruiting the ‘first and foremost’ priority in this cycle, and the results are impressive thus far.

Excluding three IMG Academy players, none of whom are from Florida, the Gators have the state’s No. 1 quarterback, running back, tight end and strongside defensive end. They also have the No. 4 cornerback, No. 5 wide receiver and No. 5 offensive tackle in the Sunshine State.

UF has continued expanding its national recruiting footprint as well, landing two prospects from Alabama (both with Crimson Tide offers) and California cornerback Elijah Blades...
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Why has Florida struck out at IMG Academy?

--- Quote ---IMG Academy fielded its first football team in 2013, and every year top recruits from around the country transfer to the school.

“They’re getting great people in there,” McElwain said at SEC spring meetings. “The concept is fine. They do a great job. Hopefully one of these days they like us, too. I don’t know.”

Florida hasn’t signed an IMG player in the last three recruiting cycles, and it doesn’t look like that will change in the 2017 class.

Florida State and Miami have landed multiple prospects from the school, as have Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, LSU, Ole Miss and A&M.

This year the Gators were unable to land IMG targets Grant Delpit (LSU) or tight end Tre’ McKitty (Oregon).

While IMG Academy is in Florida, the majority of its players are not...
--- End quote ---

Top-ranked running back in the state of Florida, Adarius Lemons, announced via Twitter that he was rescinding his commitment


--- Quote ---This isn’t Lemons’ first decommitment. Clearwater (Fla.) High running back originally committed to North Carolina in March but broke that commitment to flip to head coach Jim McElwain and the Gators on July 24.

Prior to Lemons’ decommitment, the Gators’ Class of 2017 was ranked as 15th in the nation. But Lemons was a key part of the class, one of seven 4-star recruits and the second-highest ranked. He also was the only running back commitment and one of only two skill-position players.
--- End quote ---


Which sites rankings are being used?

--- Quote ---Excluding three IMG Academy players, none of whom are from Florida, the Gators have the state’s No. 1 quarterback, running back, tight end and strongside defensive end. They also have the No. 4 cornerback, No. 5 wide receiver and No. 5 offensive tackle in the Sunshine State.

--- End quote ---

'17 3-star Miami Southridge CB Shawn Davis has given a verbal to the Gators.

Mail Stack: Could Florida poach any LSU commits? You betcha.

--- Quote ---GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Florida took one on the chin last Saturday, but the players have put the loss behind them as they look to bounce back Saturday at Vanderbilt.

Then comes the LSU game, which will be the biggest weekend of the year for UF recruiting and a chance for the Gators to put on a show in The Swamp.

The Tigers are reeling following the firing of their head coach, Les Miles. His dismissal will not only benefit the Gators on the gridiron, but potentially in recruiting as well.

LSU has the nation’s No. 4 class and 20 verbal commitments for 2017.

Two of them have heavy interest in Florida — 4-star cornerback Grant Delpit (Bradenton, Fla.) and 4-star cornerback Kary Vincent (Port Arthur, Texas).

They committed to the Tigers in July but still plan to officially visit UF. Delpit is a New Orleans native who was displaced by Hurricane Katrina and relocated in Houston before transferring to IMG.

Florida’s best shot, of course, is Delpit. Both he and Vincent told SEC Country’s Sam Spiegelman they’re sticking with LSU.
--- End quote ---




--- Quote ---4-star running back from Clearwater, Fla., announced the move Tuesday, which had been expected with his recent troubles off the field. Lemons was dismissed from his high school football team in early October following his second suspension this year.

The 6-foot-1, 195-pound prospect flipped from North Carolina to Florida after visiting the Gators for Friday Night Lights...

Lemons hopes to rejoin Florida’s class down the road if he can pass his ACT and qualify academically. UF now has 15 verbal commitments for 2017.

The Gators are expected to land Malik Davis, a 3-star running back from Tampa.
--- End quote ---

Michael Carvell ‏@Michael_Carvell 9m9 minutes ago

Florida lands RB Malik Davis


--- Quote ---ACT test and qualifying academically is not the only concern with Lemons. With two suspensions this year, he obviously has some issues off the field and I know Florida is trying to help him address those.

If he shows significant progress in that area and also makes the necessary grades, I think the UF staff would consider taking Lemons.

Q: there’s many backs, if you were to see one of them leaving, which would it be?

This seems somewhat inevitable with all four scholarship backs returning next year, another one coming in (new commit Malik Davis) and 5-star recruit Lorenzo Lingard lurking for 2018.

The obvious candidate to me would be Jordan Cronkrite...
--- End quote ---

... That's the way it is.


--- Quote ---This may sound surprising, but those limitations actually appeal to most offensive recruits. They see it as an opportunity to play right away at a big-time program, and Florida has done enough good things under McElwain to show them the offense can be productive...

There have still been more negatives than positives, but McElwain can sell the highlights to recruits. That success gives them confidence in the offensive system, but the struggles indicate that there’s still a lack of talent on the roster.
--- End quote ---

'17 Mallard Creek OT, a biscuit shy of .9 and 3 bills, TJ Moore gave a verbal to Florida.


Gators lose out on Aubrey Phillips - Solomon Thomas combo

Bama and UGa still in with SC and Michigan



--- Quote ---Gators have their first commitment of the 2018 recruiting cycle.

The Gators have landed 2018 athlete Jaylynn Williams, a 3-star recruit from the state of Florida.
--- End quote ---



ex-Arkansas O-line coach left Florida to work for Bobby again




Zach Abolverdi ‏@ZachAbolverdi 11h11 hours ago

Nick Smith and Brad Stewart were two of the eight recruits I expected Florida to land on signing day. #Gators got them to commit early.



--- Quote ---James Robinson, a 4-star wide receiver from Lakeland, Fla., is no longer a target for the Gators. As of Saturday, UF coach Jim McElwain had chosen to continue recruiting Robinson after meeting with him on Friday and vetting his marijuana citation while on an official visit to Ohio State.

However, the UF administration got involved Monday and Florida won’t be sending Robinson a letter of intent.

Twin brothers Brandon Gaddy and Breyon Gaddy, Maryland defensive tackles, have academic hurdles ahead of them and the Gators must sign at least two more defensive tackles. Florida cannot afford to pass on other targets and fill its needs at the position with a pair of prospects who may not qualify.

Gators are also still in play for JUCO defensive tackle Malik Young (Eastern Arizona C.C.).
--- End quote ---


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