Recruiting update


Published: Thursday, January 12, 2006 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Thursday, January 12, 2006 at 12:00 a.m.
Shelby (N.C.) Crest linebacker Brandon Spikes made sure no one but his college coach knew where he would go to school until he made his announcement over the weekend.
He didn't tell his mother, his family or his high school coach.
By Saturday, he made sure all involved knew he committed to Florida.
The Rivals100 member picked the Gators over Alabama and Virginia Tech.
"When I committed to the coaches it came down to the opportunity to be around great players and the opportunity to get on the field early," he said.
Spikes (6-4, 235) is ranked the No. 37 prospect in the country.
This was supposed to be one of the most gratifying times of Tampa Hillsborough athlete Jarred Fayson's high school football career, not the most trying.
Because of a hamstring injury, the Florida commitment has been unable to play in CaliFlorida Bowl and the U.S. Army All-American Bowl during the last month despite practicing for both.
"I worked hard to fulfill my dream of playing in these events," said Fayson, who was injured during the first practice for the CaliFlorida Bowl. "It's been very frustrating."
Springdale (Ark.) tight end Ben Cleveland de-committed from Florida to join former high school coach Gus Malzahn at Arkansas.
Malzahn was hired as Arkansas offensive coordinator in December. Cleveland committed to Florida in July.
  • FLORIDA STATE: Virginia Beach Landstown wide receiver Damon McDaniel admitted he might have made a hasty decision to commit to Florida along with wide receiver teammate Percy Harvin in December.
    To help clear things up, he will take an official visit to Florida State on Jan. 20. He said he might add another visit.
    "I think I rushed it," McDaniel said. "I don't want to have any doubts."
    McDaniel, the No. 6 wide receiver in the country, said he remains committed to Florida.
    It's better late than never for Rivals100 linebacker Michael Morgan.
    Morgan, from Dallas Skyline, has been discussing an official visit to Tallahassee for months, but this week he set a date. He will visit FSU on Jan. 27, the last weekend for official visits.
    Morgan has also taken official visits to Oklahoma and Southern California and plans a visit to Texas A&M.
    Lake Butler Union County running back C.J. Spiller will continue to draw out the suspense.
    The No. 5 prospect in Florida said he will decide from among Florida, Florida State, Miami, Clemson and Southern California on Signing Day in his high school auditorium.
    He visited USC in November and will take visits to the other four in January, the last coming on Jan. 27 to FSU.
    "That is a crucial visit," he said. "There's a lot of pressure because it's the last one."
  • MIAMI: Three Miami coaches visited Rivals100 running back Kylan Robinson last week at his Tampa home, taking Robinson somewhat by surprise.
    Coach Larry Coker, secondary coach Tim Walton and strength coach Andreu Swasey stayed at Robinson's house for an hour and watched his basketball game at Hillsborough.
    "I was surprised three of them came in," said Robinson, who moved from Alaska to Tampa this year. "I was expecting maybe two."
    Robinson visited Ohio State last week and plans visits to Miami, South Carolina and Florida.
    Emmanuel Moody's official visit to Miami on Dec. 16 complicated his college decision, but in the end, the Coppell, Texas, running back stuck with his first choice.
    Moody, a Rivals100 recruit, committed to USC last weekend.
    Moody de-committed from Texas in November, expecting to go to USC. However, an official visit to Miami put the Hurricanes into his top two.
    For more recruiting news, and daily reports from your favorite school, join Rivals.com. Just go to the Web site at www.rivals.com or call (866) 2-RIVALS to sign up.
    Reggie Odom stands 6 feet, 290 pounds but brings all the talent and skills a high school defensive lineman is expected to have in order to make a successful jump to Division I.
    Rated as the No. 26 defensive tackle in the nation, Odom was a selection for the annual CaliFlorida Bowl and showed well through all days of practice. He was also a strong piece of a very powerful Florida defensive line.
    His footwork, quickness and technique also are skills that college coaches caught on to early. He picked up offers from Auburn, Louisville, Mississippi State, South Carolina and Wake Forest among others.- John Talman
    I was a first-team all-state linebacker at White Springs Hamilton County in 1996. I was also an all-state basketball player. At Florida, I had 33 career sacks, a school record. I was an All-America defensive end and SEC Defensive Player of the Year. ... The Bears selected me in the fourth round. I had 20 sacks in my first four seasons in Chicago ... Who am I?
    Last week's answer: Chad Johnson
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