Ohio State punter commit flips to UF

Published: Thursday, February 7, 2013 at 4:14 p.m.
Last Modified: Thursday, February 7, 2013 at 4:14 p.m.

Florida wasn't done recruiting for its 2013 class, as it received a national letter of intent Thursday from punter Johnny Townsend.

Townsend was an Ohio State commit up until he signed with the Gators. He is the eighth recruit who was flipped by UF coach Will Muschamp and his staff this year.

Townsend's parents, Clay and Susan, both graduated from Florida and his brother, Clay Jr., is currently a student at UF.

The 6-foot-2, 200-pounder from Orlando Boone High School is a U.S. Army All-American. Townsend was named to the 2012 Florida Class 8A All-State team. He averaged 44.6 yards per punt as a senior.

“You'd be hard-pressed to find a punter this year who is more talented than Johnny,” Boone athletic director Doug Patterson said. “I can honestly say I haven't seen someone better than him at the high school level in my eight years here.”

Although Florida punter Kyle Christy is entering his junior season and was a finalist for the Ray Guy Award in 2012, Patterson thinks Townsend will challenge him for the starting job.

“He's a very competitive kid, and he's not going step away from any competition regardless of who he's going against,” Patterson said. “I know he will be in contention and both of them will be better for having Johnny there.”

The Gators now have 29 signed players for this class and will add one more Friday when Bradenton Braden River offensive tackle Trevon Young is expected to sign.

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