Hey guys. Sorry for the delay. There were some technical difficulties with the questions this week, but I’ve got some good ones and I hope the answers are equally as good. With no further delay … on to the questions!
What are our chances of landing more package deals with either the Greens from Tampa or the trio from Ft. Lauderdale (Joyner, Cody Riggs, and Linder), or both. Do any of these prospects want to play together in college? And if one commits to us, (either Riggs or Chaz Green), would it influence the others at their school?
— Zach Abolverdi
To me, the best chance Florida has at landing any other package deal, besides Lynden Trail and Quinton Dunbar from Miami Booker T. Washington, is the Green duo. Chaz Green and Christian Green have talked up the Gators all year, and both have had Florida at the top of their lists at some point. As the fall has progressed, both have a few other schools that could be right up there with Florida. Chaz has developed a lot of interest in Tennessee lately and his decision could come down to UF and UT. Christian is looking at Florida and Georgia, but he’s been around Florida’s staff so much. Plus, the Gators are in need of playmakers in their offense, and Christian would be a great fit. Both will visit for the Florida State game next week and that could be a done deal for the Gators if Urban Meyer can work his magic at the end of the year.
It’s shouldn’t be too hard. Silly Nike Pro Combat uniforms, an epic senior day and FSU. Looks good for the Gators.
What are the chances that Florida will recruit a BIG, heavy-duty tailback such as Jalston Fowler out of Alabama. Seems that with Tim Tebow leaving next year, Florida will need at least a couple of big 240-pound tailbacks (not just blocking fullbacks): POWER up the middle, not just the small tailbacks (200 pounds is small by today’s standards). Alabama is reportedly stocking up on some big running backs, and this would add another dimension to Florida’s spread.
Florida is playing around with Rick Burgess at fullback and has T.J. Pridemore for the next couple of seasons. I think Florida is finished recruiting at the running back/fullback spot. Mack Brown is committed, and he’s the every-down power back that Meyer has wanted for as long as he’s been at Florida. The Gators will also be awfully deep at running back next year. Five guys are expected to be on the roster come fall. Adding another body — no matter how beefy — would just make for an even more cluttered position. Plus, I don’t see Meyer going after a more of a traditional fullback in recruiting. He might be up for recruiting a linebacker (like Pridemore) and turning him into a fullback.
Who will be the biggest surprise recruit that comes to UF in this year class? Do you think we will get either or both Ronald Powell or Kenny Stills?
— Joe Secoy
I’m no psychic, so my answer is strictly opinion. If I had to pick my biggest surprise it would be UCLA commit Tony Jefferson. The Chula Vista, Calif., Eastlake safety is officially visiting Florida for the FSU game and has shown increasing interest in the Gators this fall. The problem is, I don’t think even if Jefferson wanted to decommit from the Bruins that there would be a spot for him at Florida. Word is that Gator commit Matt Elam doesn’t like the fact that Florida is talking to other safety prospects. Moving in on other guys could scare Elam off, and the staff doesn’t want that. Still, if Elam were to jump ship anyway, the Gators could go right after Jefferson. Or, since Elam is an early enrollee, the staff could put off Jefferson until after December. Not saying that will happen, but it’s a possibility. As good as I think Jefferson is, I’d be shocked to actually see him end up in this class, considering the circumstances.
I saw Shane Matthews on Pat Dooley’s show, and he was talking about the junior QB on his team throwing for over 400 yards in a game. Is he a player that the Gators are interested in for the 2011 recruiting class to give them a John Brantley-type to balance the more run-oriented Trey Burton?
— Ken Frier
GHS quarterback Ryan McGriff is averaging just under 200 yards a game, has 30 touchdowns and seven interceptions. He’s done quite well for the Hurricanes this season and even put up 445 yards against Lake Weir last week. I have yet to see him live, so I can’t really comment on what he looks like in game situations. But from what I’ve been told, he’s a solid player who is improving with every week. He’ll have to outshine a lot of talent this summer and next fall to get into the same conversation with some of the quarterbacks Florida will be after. The advantage he has is that he’s a legacy and is playing in UF’s backyard, meaning the coaches can go see him whenever they want. As far as going for a more pro-style quarterback versus a dual-threat, it will come down to what Meyer wants his offense to look like in the future. Next year won’t look like this year, but there’s no telling what it will look like once Brantley’s gone.
Has Raleigh, NC-area quarterback Garrett Leatham shown up anywhere on your radar? He’s a 6-foot-6 junior, big man for one of best basketball teams in our state, is throwing for over 400 yards per game, dominating top classification high school defenses for Middle Creek High School. Big arm, getting attention. Not a runner but can move on basketball court.
I hadn’t heard anything about him until you brought him up, so I did some research on him. He averaged close to 300 yards passing this season and a lot of writers in his area considered him one of the top players around. There’s not a lot on him as far as the Internet would reveal, and I couldn’t find any video. He’s got decent stats this year, but like McGriff, he’s going to have to make a major push in the next year to get his name out there on the national scene.