Gators still in the picture for Pagan


It was a pretty tough senior year for Asheville, N.C., defensive end Jeoffrey Pagan.

His high school team finished 8-4 and out of reach for a state title, and he saw his season cut short after tearing the MCL and PCL in his right knee. Though he underwent successful surgery, Pagan won’t be completely healthy until next fall.

Adding insult to Pagan’s devastating injury, the one-time Florida commit watched as the Gators’ defensive line coach (Dan McCarney) left to be the North Texas head coach and then Florida’s Urban Meyer resigned.

The loss of McCarney triggered Pagan’s November decommitment, but Meyer stepping down almost severed all ties Pagan had with Florida.

“After Coach McCarney left, I felt like there was (uncertainty) there,” Pagan said. “I needed to get my head together. I waited until there was a d-line coach there before I stepped back into the loop of things.”

Now, Pagan says Florida is back in his good graces. He’s down to five schools and Florida is one of them. Though he’s only talked to new Florida coach Will Muschamp once, he is hoping to visit Gainesville and get to know him and defensive coordinator/defensive line coach Dan Quinn better. Nothing has been finalized, but Pagan said he’s trying to visit Florida on Jan. 28.

Pagan said he’s still waiting to speak with Muschamp again, but is already intrigued by the possibility of being coached by an NFL guy in Quinn.

“I’d love to be coached by somebody like that,” Pagan said.

But Muschamp and his crew have some ground to make up. Pagan lists Georgia, Clemson and Alabama above Florida, who is joined by Tennessee to round out his favorites. The team that seems to be generating the most interest in Pagan is Clemson.

Close to home, Clemson seems to be the most comfortable place for Pagan, right now.

“For me, it’s only an hour and 45 minutes down the road,” Pagan said of Clemson. “They treat me like I’m one of their own. I feel like a home atmosphere there. Plus, my mom, that’s an easy drive for her to come see me.”

Another factor in Pagan’s recruitment could be where his buddy Stephone Anthony goes. The Wadesboro, N.C., Anson linebacker has grown close to Anthony and Pagan joked that both are “most definitely” a package deal to one lucky school.

The two schools they have in common just happen to be Clemson and Florida.

Though he isn’t 100 percent sure they will go to the same school, Pagan said there will be discussions about it between the two before any decision is made.

“Getting next to him and playing with him would make things that much sweeter,” he said.


  1. Man, this recruting stuff is a joke! All these guys want their fifteen minutes of fame? Look at last years monster class , didnt really pan out like some thought, although they are still young! just give me more trey burtons, and less prima donnas and well see who can ball!

  2. Corey…Clemson’s teams might not be all that good, but he wouldn’t be forgotten. Clemson has a long line of Defensive Line greats, including the overall #4 pick a few yrs ago in Gaines Adams and the #1 overall prospect this year in Daquan Bowers.

  3. I agree with u T-Fannin cause at least 8 or 9 not even with the gators no more & D-Easely has had an attitude problem all yr. i rather us recruit like Uconn or Virginia Tech 3* who buys n2 your system & want 2 b coach up. both at the top of they conference every yr. without 4 & 5* recruit

  4. T-Fannin and moneygreen, you guys realize Tebow and Harvin were 5 star guys, right (Floyd and Driskel are gonna be a beasts as well)? And while Uconn and Va Tech are at the top of their conferences, they do not play in the SEC, those teams would be bottom feeders in the SEC. You cannot coach speed and size, typically these are major deciding factors in high school ratings. We NEED these 4 and 5 star recruits to stay competitive in the SEC. You may get a bad seed here and there, but the upside far outweighs the down. GO GATORS!!

  5. With the possible future success of Sharrif Floyd aside, I give our multi-year DT recruiting an F. John Brown? Torrey Davis? 5-Star busts. And, Dominique Easley looks like he’s following in their footsteps. Hunter…Howard…Antwine…meh. Florida hasn’t had a truly dominant defensive tackle since Marcus Thomas. Period. I certainly hope Will M., et al, are better judges of talent on this most vital of units.

  6. I can understand him wanting to be near his mom. But if he goes to a school with a good team, so that he can be selected in the first round of the NFL draft in a couple years, he will be able to buy a house for his mom right in the same town where he will be living.

  7. I know it’s just me but I really thought that with this high profile coaching staff we would start seeing some results on recruiting. I know, I just need to be patient. But you can’t help but wonder. I can’t help but think about WR and how little we’ve done there and it appears that the cream of the crop is gone. JUST THINKING. can’t

  8. moneygreen – how many championships has VTECH won? ZERO. Look at the last decade of champions – USC, Bama, LSU, Miami, Ohio St, both Florida teams – all of them loooooaded with 4 and 5 star talent. Don’t kid yourself, you have to recruit big time talent to win the crystal……either that or put together a schedule filled with Weber State’s and Wyoming’s then bitch and complain to the media enough so they’ll give you a shot.

  9. It’s a BIG decision for a 17 or 18 year old kid to make. You’ve been told you’re one of the 50 or 100 best players in the country. Therefore the law of averages tell you, if you play your cards right you’ll have a career in the NFL. Make a lot of money, become a millionaire and be set for life. I’m 39 years old and I would struggle with a decision like that. I can’t imagine having that kind of rest of my life is in the balance pressure……… Take your time Pagan and go with what your heart tells you.

  10. Pagan will definately have to earn it on the field after all of his flip flopping. I understand the recruiting process can be overwhelming at times but Florida doesn’t need you if you’re not sure you wanna be here. I’d rather you not committ until you are totally sure if not wait until national signing day. All of this entitlement stuff is not a good fit here. If you want it…. we will gladly except you but you are gonna have to earn it. No free bees buddy. This is by far the number one program and an NFL factory just check our history. Keep in mind that everyone that comes to Florida are All Staters you are no one special.

  11. Gainesville is a great place to be. We need you and we want you. GatorNation is forever. You’re part of the family here forever. Play with the best against the best in the SEC. Trust me……you’re mom would love coming to Gainesville to see you play!

  12. Read a lot of true statements today, My take is if you really want to be a GATOR, bring your “A” game because its not an easy task to come here and start and stand out because in this school and this conference everybody is a star. You have to EARN it here and with all of the competition available and waiting for you, if you don’t REALLY want it enough to EARN it, go some where else. We had Two such superb atheletes this year, that wanted it but didn’t bring that “A” game with them and all they saw was the sideline and that crying towel. “I’m not getting enough playing time” You’re not EARNING enough playing time. If you decide that FLORIDA is the school for you, bring your “A” game not your crying towel and your mother will be PROUD to travel the extra mile to see a real STAR.