Focus turns to recruiting


Forget the fact that Florida has lost three recruits in the last two weeks – two after the national championship. This class will still be one of the best.

Sure, the losses of Valdosta, Ga., Lowndes cornerback Greg Reid, Deland running back Mike Gillislee and Broomfield, Co., Legacy defensive end Nick Kasa hurt, but there is still just under a month left of recruiting and winning it all can only help this team in the coming weeks.

UF now has two national titles in three years. That’s tops in the country, and with quarterback Tim Tebow coming back, this team is on course to compete for yet another title next season. Who wouldn’t want to live in Gainesville for the next three or four years?

There aren’t that many spots left in this class, but UF coach Urban Meyer said Friday after BCS championship that it’s all about quality, not quantity, as Signing Day approaches.

“We only have four left, five left, so we expect to close this thing,” Meyer said.

“We just want to make sure it’s the right four because usually recruiting classes are made with your last four or five that you pick up. That last week has been really good for Florida and recruiting.”

And despite the three deflections, it was a good week for the Gators in recruiting. The loss of Reid is the biggest hit, but you have to give the kid credit for wanting to look around before he makes a major career decision. It’s no given, but I see Reid ending up in this class.

Gillislee and Kasa are probably out for good. While both are good prospects, neither has the value of Reid. Kasa staying close to home is no surprise because the depth chart at defensive end was not in his favor and for some reason, his relationship with UF kind of slowed during the fall. Depth is pretty much the same factor for Gillislee, who even texted me the night of the championship – the night of his apparent de-commitment – that he was all Gator. Man, these kids sure do love to play the game.

Honestly though, UF is on such a roll that it’s hard for kids not to think about the orange-and-blue when deciding on a future home.

“You’ve got to be out of your mind – I’m not sure if I’m legally – you’re out of your freaking mind if you don’t play for the Gators,” Meyer said shortly after the BCS win over Oklahoma. “I’d go.”

Out of your mind? Yes. I’m sorry, but yes. UF has the academics, the powerhouse image and the social scene.

“I don’t think anyone wouldn’t want to go to Florida right now,” New London, Conn., New London quarterback Jordan Reed, and current UF commit, said.

These next two weeks will be huge for UF, as some of the top talent is expected on campus. The Jan. 16 weekend lineup currently stands at Reid, Gadsden, Ala., Gadsden City cornerback Dre Kirkpatrick, Alabama running back pledge Trent Richardson, of Pensacola, Tampa Plant tight end Orson Charles, Irvington, N.J., athlete Joshua Evans, Gaithersburg, Md., Quince Orchard defensive back Travis Hawkins, Columbus, Ga., Carver linebacker Jarvis Jones, Miami, Gulliver Prep linebacker/safety Frankie Telfort and Fort Pierce, Westwood defensive tackle Luther Robinson.

Sit back Gator fans; the next two weeks will be chock-full of drama.