Jernigan interested in visiting UF, coaches


SAN ANTONIO, Texas — Timmy Jernigan feels overwhelmed by getting back to the recruiting process.

The Lake City Columbia defensive tackle feels as if he is starting the entire thing over because of staff changes at schools he is interested in.

Florida’s staff is new. Alabama lost its defensive line coach. There are rumors that LSU coach Les Miles could be headed to Michigan.

Right now, Florida State is the only school not going through staff changes, but Jernigan said he’s never been truly comfortable with everyone in Tallahassee. Besides defensive line coach Odell Haggins, the Seminole coaches who first recruited Jernigan left with former coach Bobby Bowden.

Jernigan said he feels the most comfortable with Haggins, but still is unsure what he thinks about the rest of FSU’s staff.

“The big thing is a matter of trust right now,” Jernigan said. “Who can I trust? Who do I know is going to be there for a while? That’s the biggest thing for me right now.”

Frankly, Jernigan doesn’t know what to think, but after talking to some players before Saturday’s U.S. Army All-American Bowl, Jernigan is ready to make a few decisions about the upcoming weeks.

He’s unsure if he will visit Tennessee this week or Alabama next week, but he’s leaning toward maybe making a trip to Gainesville to see Florida’s new staff.

“I’ve really been thinking about it and it’s possible,” Jernigan said about visiting UF. “Time will tell.”

One reason Jernigan is interested in meeting Florida’s new crew is that with most of the coaches being a part of a new regime, he expects to see those guys to be there longer than just the 2011 season.

“I think that staff will be there for a long time,” he said.

Jernigan said he isn’t sure when he’ll get to Gainesville if he does decide to make the trip.

Jernigan might have had trouble processing the last few weeks of college football, but he was getting plenty of information from his East teammates this week. Florida running back commit Mike Blakely was in his ear about the Gators, while FSU athlete commit James Wilder Jr. was talking up the Seminoles.

“There are a couple of boys that are pulling me this way, pulling me that way,” Jernigan said.

“Everybody understands that we have to do what is best for us and we are all just real good friends now.”

The next few weeks will be chaotic for Jernigan and his family. He’ll make a National Signing Day decision on Feb. 2. Until then, Jernigan plans to do a lot of thinking and a lot of talking with different coaching staffs.

“It’s going to be hectic. it’s going to be very hectic,” he said. “I have to keep my priorities in order and handle my business like that.”

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  1. Is this guy the real thing? Omar Hunter was the “D” side of a Percy and he hasn’t panned out as was expected. Jernigan is about the same size as Hunter was coming out of high school. Only time will tell if he’s the real deal or not.

  2. Only time will tell if he is the real deal or not. However this kid has gone up against all season long better talent than hunter has and he is faster than hunter, has longer reach than hunter and has a lean body mass unlike hunter was and is. However hunter was known in highschool to be high energy and not take plays off. He was a true leader on his team. Yet timmy has been criticized for taking plays off or being lazy in practice but the young man brought it on National Telivision and showed us all that he truely has a huge upside so it is up to whoever lands him to mold him into the studd he can truly be. WM is that man

  3. I just dont have a good feeling about this guy. I dont like the game players and prima donnas and although this could be unfair, I view him as one of the “me” guys.
    I hope we get him because his talent is significant but he sounds like a seminole. They are really good at stroking egos.

  4. Unfortunately, TJ is very ‘me’ oriented and he does take plays off. But the upside is maybe the school he picks can correct that. He’s probably Bama or FSU bound–don’t know if he has the grades to get into uf.

  5. If this guy is this picky then let him go to half-a**U we definetely do not need any more of his type of egos on the team!! With Floyd and Easley’s egos floating around maybe he should go elsewhere!! He is all about “me” not about TEAM!!!

  6. Please let the guy relax. Some of these “stars” wouldn’t become prima donnas, if that’s what they are, if they weren’t pursued so radically. He’s only what, 18 or 19 years old,,,give the guy a break. A recruit’s main committment should be to the school he attends and there should be no bad choices for the kid. If he comes to Florida, great; if he chooses another school, great for him. He needs to go where he feels that he will fit the best.

  7. I got news for you – they are all “me” guys when they come to campus. Its how they’re coached that will determine whether or not they fall in line. I believe this was one of Urban’s shortcomings as a coach – he was too close to most of the players and in the end one of the reasons he left. I give him credit for giving second chances to some of these kids when others would kick them to the curb – and most turn out all right. But, discipline has become a problem with this team in recent years. You don’t see the “me” with players on Bama. Saban will cut the cord quicker than you can pack a suitcase.

  8. I don’t think Jernigan is prima donna, I just think he’s confused right now. From what I’ve read, his heart has always been with the Gators, but he was feeling pushed to Florida, then the coaching change, these have kind of cooled him on the Gators. I think in the end, he will go where his heart is, and become a Gator.

  9. I tell you who bothers me….ego-wise, and that Pagan…he sounds like trouble to me! It won’t hurt my feelings at all if he motors on down the highway from Florida! We’ve seen what egos can do to a solid team! Fla doesn’t need to beg for any players so if Pagan needs to be begged, I beg him to bypass Fla and keep on trucking!