Ask Aschoff 8/12

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Lots of questions this week, so I won’t bore you with a long intro. Gotta love the recruiting queries during the start of fall practice. On to the questions!

With 16 commitments already before fall practice, how many do you see Florida ending up with on National Signing Day? Also, how many potential five-stars?
— gator4life94

I think the goal for Florida’s coaches was to have either 26 or 25 commitments by the end of Signing Day. With Stephen Alli already enrolled, I think the Gators will end up with 25 in the class. So the Gators still have nine spots to work with from now until February, which isn’t a bad deal at all because most of the players the Gators are looking at are top-rated guys.

As far as five-stars go, who knows with all the different Web sites and their rankings? And who knows what will happen if a five-star has an off year or a four-star ends up being incredible? So far, Scout.com has 11 five-stars (10 uncommitted, one Florida commit), Rivals.com has 17 (13 uncommitted, one Florida commit) and ESPN has 12 (10 undecided, two Florida commits). There’s a lot of Florida love still left for most of the uncommitted players in all three rankings.

Here’s a breakdown of the five-stars prospects who like Florida:

Rivals.com
Seantrel Henderson (Saint Paul, Minn., Cretin-Derham Hall) OL
Ronald Powell (Moreno Valley, Cali., Rancho Verde) DE
Matt Elam (Committed, West Palm Beach, Dwyer) S
Sharrif Floyd (Philadelphia, George Washington) DT
Jeff Luc (Port St. Lucie, Treasure Coast) LB

Florida could land all but Henderson.

Scout.com
Ronald Powell (Moreno Valley, Cali., Rancho Verde) DE
Matt Elam (Committed, West Palm Beach, Dwyer) S
Sharrif Floyd (Philadelphia, George Washington) DT
Jeff Luc (Port St. Lucie, Treasure Coast) LB
Jordan Hicks (West Chester (OH) Lakota West) LB

Same four possible signees as Rivals.

ESPN
Ronald Powell (Moreno Valley (CA) Rancho Verde) DE
Jeff Luc (Port St. Lucie, Treasure Coast) LB
Jordan Hicks (West Chester (OH) Lakota West) LB
Jonathan Dowling (Committed, Bradenton, Southeast) S
Demar Dorsey (Committed, Lauderdale Lakes, Boyd Anderson) DB

Throw Hicks out and Florida has got its guys.

With Leon Orr able to play either offense or defensive line and us not taking Easley’s commitment, do you think we might be done at DT this year? Is it Sharrif Floyd or nobody at this point?
— flbball23

Floyd is too talented not to take if he’s really interested in Florida. The Gators are in his top two along with Penn State, and he’s planning to take an official to Gainesville this fall. I think you’re right when you say “Floyd or nobody.” Unless Miami commit Louis Nix de-commits and starts talking to Florida’s staff more, I don’t see any other defensive tackle in this class. Easley is still being recruited, but as an end.

Ed, any news about Justin McCay? Previously he has mentioned that Florida was on his list but did not show up to FNL. Is he on the coaches’ radar?
— Gator Al

Well, he committed to Oklahoma Tuesday, but I’m not sure Florida was really recruiting him as hard as some might think. He didn’t camp much this summer and wasn’t the best at Friday Night Lights. I think he might have fallen off the radar at that point.

What is the feedback from recruits on how and how hard our coaches recruit compared to brand x and y?
— Rick H

I talked to a couple guys in the past couple weeks and asked them this exact question. The main thing I get is that Florida’s coaches talk more about stuff outside of football. Family, friends, hobbies, religion, etc. Miami, Booker T. Washington defensive end Lynden Trail said that Florida was his No. 1 mainly because of his relationship with Urban Meyer. He said Meyer sometimes talks to his girlfriend before he’ll talk to him and that football is rarely talked about. Ronald Powell talked about how the family atmosphere is selling hard as well. Even my boy O.J. Ross, who still doesn’t have a Florida offer, said Florida feels like a huge family. I think Meyer’s got the recruiting talk down pat. With the way his players bond so quickly, recruits just feel comfortable with Florida.

Plus, they have to love the thought of winning a championship, and Gainesville is the place for that these days.

WR and DE seem to be our two biggest areas of need for this class. Who do we have on our board that we have the best chance of signing?
— TampaDave

Even with Alli on campus, there are still a few prospects Florida is interested in:

Wide Receiver
Chris Dunkley (Pahokee)
Ivan McCartney (Miramar)
Quinton Dunbar (Miami, Booker T. Washington)
Kenny Stills (Carlsbad, Cali., La Costa Canyon)
Darius Millines (Delray Beach, American Heritage School)
Kenbrell Thompkins (Torrance, Cali., El Camino C.C.)

I think Florida would want to get Dunkley and McCartney and could get both. Dunbar and Stills are very high on Florida.

Florida obviously wants Powell to headline its class so he’s the top target at defensive end as well.

Defensive End
Owamagbe Odighizuwa (Portland, Ore., David Douglas)
Corey Lemonier (Hialeah)
Lynden Trail (Miami, Booker T. Washington)
Dominique Easley (Staten Island, Curtis)

If Florida doesn’t get Powell, Odighizuwa and Trail are the ones to keep an eye on. Trail is all but locked up at this point, and “Owa” will visit.

Ed, can you give us the inside scoop on what happened with James Louis? Also, can you provide some commentary on us not accepting kids who want to commit that had an offer (like Louis, Easley and Markeith Ambles apparently). I think the whole thing is poor form, although I know this is big business and that it’s a tough process to manage.
— ccb223

The Louis situation is just another case of preference. Is it fair? Not really. But like you said, it’s a business. I talked to a very reliable source who asked not to be named, who said that it came down to Dunkley. He’s the top receiver on Florida’s board and the staff wasn’t going to risk losing him. Someone close to Dunkley told a couple Florida coaches that if Louis committed, he was gone. Apparently, the two just don’t like each other for some reason. So, Florida’s coaches decided to hold out for Dunk, who has yet to commit and is taking his sweet time. Dunkley wouldn’t confirm this, unfortunately.

It’s all about getting the best in recruiting, and if Louis and the others you mentioned aren’t high enough on the board, then they’ve got to wait. It’s tough, but it’s reality. Sometimes there are things behind the scenes that people outside of the situation don’t know about. Grades can be an issue as well. Off-the-field issues (like the ones that plagued Ambles) come up. I don’t like the idea of “uncommitable offers,” but coaches have them for a reason. I would say a handful of offers given are uncommitable.

6 COMMENTS

  1. Edward, You grew up in Oxfird, Lafayette, Ms? A Reb?
    Spurned Ole Miss for UF? That’s pretty intersting.

    I grew up a Gator and we have two daughters who
    spurned UF for Ole Miss! It’s been a great
    experience for them and for us…Of the 4 games between Ole Miss and Florida since they ‘ve been there
    the Rebels have one 3 times. Good for the girls I guess.

    Just wanted to share…I do enjoy your column.

    Jay Williams UF 1977

  2. I was at FNL and Saw 2 brothers from Lakeland high School There names were Ben and Javares McRoy I think they are going into 11th and 12th grade.Ben was with the Running Backs and was 1 if not the best Runnning Back there his speed was crazy and foot work lookedto be awesome as well why haven’t we heaqrd more about him? Javares was a rise 1st team all american and I heard people talking about him and they said that at the Meyer Camp in June that he was the best wide out at the camp.What is the deal with these 2?

  3. How can the Gators ignore the Jax Ed White RB Casey Turner who is a 4.4 40 durable machine? He was Jax area Offensive POY as a jr. He’s a gamer with no outside issues and his school has produced many Gators.

  4. With the sad news about Paul Wilson, does this effect how many receivers or players in general that we accept? Could this open it up so we accept a trail and dunbar package, or did we need some attrition to happen?

  5. Howdy Ed, I haven’t heard much from or about Corey Lemonier lately. Early on, he seemed to be talking about the Gators quite a bit and looked like a lock to come to Gainesville. Was I wrong in my assumption, or is he just playing it close to his vest? Also, any new word on the Green boys, Christian and Chaz?