QB Jones highlights Florida’s Early Signing Class

Quarterback Emory Jones (16) throws a pass during the Under Armour Future 50 football camp in Lake Buena Vista last year. Jones signed with Florida on Wednesday. (Phelan M. Ebenhack via AP)

New Florida coach Dan Mullen scored a huge recruiting victory today when the Gators’ No. 1 quarterback target, dual-threat Emory Jones, signed with UF.

A former Ohio State commitment, Jones chose the Gators over Ohio State and Florida State.

Jones is rated the No. 4 dual-threat QB in the nation, and his skill set seems like a perfect fit for what Mullen likes to do with his offense.

Mullen and his staff got on Jones late in the process, but were able to turn him over the last few days. He visited both UF and FSU this past weekend, and it appears it came down to a battle between those two in-state rivals for Jones, the standout from Heard County (Ga.) High School.

Mullen had recruited Jones during his tenure as head coach at Mississippi State.

— Robbie Andreu


 

Noah Banks
Position: Offensive Lineman
Height: 6-foot-6
Weight: 305 pounds
Previous school: Iowa Western C.C.
Ranking: No. 6 JUCO offensive lineman by 247Sports and the No. 9 JUCO offensive lineman by ESPN.
How he fits in: Considering his age and experience, Banks gives the Gators another potential rotational lineman. He’s an ideal fit for the system Mullen plans to run, and should earn playing time from Day 1.
Will he enroll early?: A JUCO mid-year enrollee, Banks will report to campus in January.

Chris Bleich
Position: Offensive Lineman
Height: 6-foot-6
Weight: 315 pounds
High School: Wyoming Valley West (Pa.)
Ranking: No. 33 offensive lineman by 247Sports and the No. 22 offensive lineman by ESPN.
How he fits in: While Bleich may need more time progressing, he’s a potential candidate for early playing time simply due to uncertainty UF has at the position. His frame and size are ideal for the position, but his role won’t be determined until he’s arrived on campus.
Will he enroll early?: Yes, Bleich plans to enroll early at UF.

Amari Burney
Position: Defensive back/Linebacker
Height: 6-foot-2
Weight: 210 pounds
High School: Clearwater Calvary Christian
Ranking: No. 59 overall prospect in the 2018 class by ESPN and the No. 15 safety by 247Sports.
How he fits in: Burney gives the Gators a versatile playmaker able to play multiple positions. Early playing time will be determined on which position UF decides to use him at, but his upside alone gives him an opportunity to factor in from Day 1.
Will he enroll early?: Yes, Burney plans to enroll early at UF.

Iverson Clement
Position: Running back
Height: 5-foot-11
Weight: 200 pounds
High School: Rancocas Valley Regional High (NJ)
Ranking: No. 11 athlete by 247Sports and the No. 24 athlete by ESPN.
How he fits in: Clement isn’t the only signee who could be in for a position change at UF, especially considering the wealth at running back the Gators have. His opportunities to play early will be defined by his role, and it helps that he’ll be on campus in January.
Will he enroll early?: Yes, Clement plans to enroll early at UF.

 

Trey Dean

Position: Safety

Height: 6-foot-2

Weight: 185 pounds

High School: Dutchtown (Ga.)

Ranking: No. 21 safety by ESPN and the No. 22 safety by 247Sports.

How he fits in: Dean’s first priority will be getting into a collegiate weight training program, and from there the sky’s the limit. A lengthy playmaker with advanced ball skills, Dean could very well join the list of freshmen who have factored heavily into UF’s secondary.

Will he enroll early?: Yes, Dean is on track to enroll early at UF.

John Huggins
Position: Safety
Height: 6-foot-0
Weight: 195 pounds
High School: Daytona Beach Mainland
Ranking: No. 32 safety by 247Sports and
How he fits in: An underrated in-state prospect, Huggins gives the Gators an aggressive defensive back who is a sure tackler in the secondary. Huggins should see the field early for Florida barring any setbacks in his development.
Will he enroll early?: No

 

Emory Jones

Position: Dual-threat quarterback

Height: 6-foot-3

Weight: 195 pounds

High School: Heard County (Ga.)

Ranking: No. 4 dual-threat quarterback by 247Sports and the No. 2 dual-threat quarterback by ESPN

How he fits in: Let’s make one thing clear: Jones will have a legitimate shot at being UF’s quarterback as a true freshman. With the Gators once again having an open QB competition, Jones would appear to have the upper hand under new coach Dan Mullen despite the presence of redshirt sophomores Feleipe Franks and Kyle Trask.

Will he enroll early?: Yes, Jones has indicated he is on track to enroll early at UF.

 

Dante Lang

Position: Tight end/Defensive end

Height: 6-foot-5

Weight: 220 pounds

High School: Boca Raton High

Ranking: No. 27 tight end by 247Sports and the No. 61 defensive end by ESPN

How he fits in: Lang possesses advanced ball skills for someone who played primarily on the defensive side of the ball throughout high school. He’ll have work to do to progress offensively if he hopes to play early, especially with the addition of highly rated tight end Kyle Pitts.

Will he enroll early?: No

 

Evan McPherson

Position: Kicker

Height: 6-foot-0

Weight: 165 pounds

High School: Fort Payne (Ala.)

Ranking: No. 2 kicker by 247Sports

How he fits in: With kicker Eddy Pineiro declaring for the NFL Draft, McPherson is the future at the position for UF. He has big cleats to fill, especially considering the adoration bestowed upon Pineiro from the Florida faithful.

Will he enroll early?: No

 

Dameon Pierce

Position: Running back

Height: 5-foot-11

Weight: 210 pounds

High School: Bainbridge (Ga.)

Ranking: No. 10 running back by 247Sports and No. 7 running back by ESPN.

How he fits in: With UF running backs Lamical Perine and Malik Davis, Pierce will aim to find work as a situational back barring unforeseen circumstances. But considering his talent level, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see Pierce become a factor earlier than anticipated.

Will he enroll early?: Yes, Pierce plans to enroll early at UF.

 

Kyle Pitts

Position: Tight end

Height: 6-foot-5

Weight: 235 pounds

Ranking: No. 2 tight end by ESPN and No. 6 tight end by 247Sports.

How he fits in: Let’s make one thing clear: Pitts should contribute early for UF. Considering his size, offensive ability and overall football acumen, it would be a surprise if Pitts isn’t hauling in receptions vs. Charleston Southern on Sept. 1.

Will he enroll early?: No

 

David Reese

Position: Outside linebacker

Height: 6-foot-2

Weight: 215 pounds

High School: Vero Beach

Ranking: No. 28 outside linebacker by ESPN and No. 20 outside linebacker by 247Sports.

How he fits in: Reese possesses advanced coverage skills for the position, and his ability to chase down an opponent makes him an ideal candidate to see the field early for Florida. However, considering he won’t arrive until June, his early playing time will be contingent upon his weight training and progression in Fall camp.

Will he enroll early?: No

 

Randy Russell

Position: Defensive back

Height: 5-foot-11

Weight: 175 pounds

High School: Carol City

Ranking: No. 28 safety by both ESPN and 247Sports.

How he fits in: Russell is one of the hardest-hitting tacklers for his size in recent memory, and that alone should make him an ideal candidate to factor into UF’s secondary. Don’t be surprised to see him making plays within the first month of the season.

Will he enroll early?: Yes, Russell intends to enroll early at UF.


Graham Hall :