2020 ATH Williams de-commits from UF

Williams' de-commitment edit (Courtesy of Williams' Twitter account)

After picking up two commitments over the weekend from offensive linemen, Florida’s 2020 class took a hit late Monday with the departure of Baton Rouge (La.) Madison Prep Academy athlete/cornerback Joel Williams. 

Ranked the No. 17 athlete in the 247Sports composite ranking, Williams committed to the Gators on May 19, yet his recruiting profile has arguably only risen in the weeks since pledging to Florida.

Williams picked up an offer from Alabama on June 2, and in-state LSU has amped up its pursuit of the 6-foot-1, 180-pounder as of late.

With the departure of Williams, the Gators hold commitments from 13 prospects in the 2020 class.


  1. This is just recruiting today. Many of these kids LOVE the attention that comes along with recruiting. They get calls from famous coaches, are talked about by recruiting services and fans are following them on Twitter. It’s a rush. At the same time, they are not used to being pressured by adults. When they come on a visit, that is exactly what they get. They commit without really thinking through things and then the attention is euphoric from that school, but the other schools come at them too. They get pressure from the other side and can’t say no. I get why they change their mind.

    That being said, the recruiting services don’t have anything better to write about, so they blow it out of proportion because if they don’t, why would you care about their website or read their tweets in the middle of June. They are constantly reaching out to these kids and asking about their commitment. Then they write articles about how important the stars are next to the kid’s name. It’s the equivalent of a newspaper writing articles that told you how important newspapers are to your daily life as opposed to the web. There is truth to the claim, but also bias in the reporting.

    Recruiting matters. Stars matter. Commitments matter. They just don’t matter as much as the recruiting services want you to believe they do and they matter most in November and January, not June.

    • You are so right on.The recruiting industry , and it is an industry, has made its money making these kids think they are rock stars. Also, many of these kids will commit early to the best program that offers them for insurance, knowing they have something to fall back on if a better offer comes along later. Like many of you said, it is tough for an out of state kid to leave the state in the long run. I like the Florida kids first. Mom and dad can get in a car and come to see their son play on Saturday .

  2. I want to thank Joel Williams for decommitting now instead of months down the road. Pretty much everybody was shocked when he committed to UF over Tenn/LSU. Maybe our coaches can recruit florida now for a player just as good as Williams instead of letting those players go to Clemson/BAMA/OSU/UGA who are all doing a better job of recruiting Florida. Let LSU win Louisiana. I want UF to win Florida, not cede it to others.

  3. Transfer portals, commitment that last three weeks…. whatever.

    Williams committed to UF with a decent amount of fanfare over it, and then in an instant, kicked UF to the curb when Bama and Saban came a-callin’.

    Whatever son, and best of luck to you. I don’t have as much of a problem with a kid de-committing as I do with a kid who should have known better than to commit in the first place if they knew another offer would cause them to.

    Now, as a recruitnik of many, many years, I know the stories of the infamous “Bama Bag Men” (their boosters), but in this case, Williams wasn’t even top 300, so not sure if they played a role in this one.