Zach’s Mail Stack 11/8


I got a lot of questions this week about Florida offensive coordinator Brent Pease.

As most of you know by now, he’s been linked to the job opening at Kentucky but said any talk of him becoming a head coach is premature.

Many people asked if I thought he would take the job and who his replacement might be, but some wondered how his potential loss could affect recruiting.

First of all, I don’t think he’s going anymore whether he gets the offer or not. And it was reported he has interest in the job, but we don’t know if Kentucky has interest in him.

Nevertheless, I really think UK is a dead-end job and not a place Pease can use as a stepping stone in his coaching career. He’s got a great gig going on here, and if he stays for a few years and is successful, he’ll have his choice of several schools and all will be better than Kentucky.

However, in the event he does take the job, I think the Gators actually won’t lose any offensive commits from his departure. Quarterback Max Staver (Brentwood, Tenn./Brentwood Academy) doesn’t have any offers better than UF, running backs Kelvin Taylor (Belle Glade, Fla./Glades Day) and Adam Lane (Winter Haven, Fla./Winter Haven) are enrolling early and have an opportunity to play right away, and all four receivers seem sold on Florida as a school and weren’t affected when Aubrey Hill resigned earlier this year.

On to the questions!

Defensive tackle situation. —  Mike, C-Slim, Derek, Gary, Shawn, Ken, Reggie, Slickgator, Matt H.

Hot topic of the week right here.

It began on Monday when UF coach Will Muschamp announced the transfer of true freshman Jafar Mann. He’s second 2012 defensive tackle signee Florida has lost, which is a big blow on the depth chart.

Sharrif Floyd is long gone in my opinion, and there’s a chance Dominque Easley could leave early for the NFL as well. If that happens, UF will have just two defensive tackles (Damien Jacobs and Leon Orr) coming back for next year.

Caleb Brantley (Crescent City, Fla./Crescent City) is the only commit at the position for the Gators, but defensive linemen Joey Ivie (Dade City, Fla./Pasco) and Antonio Riles (Lawrenceville, Ga./Archer), both 6-foot-4 and in the 270-range, could slide inside if they put on some weight in the offseason. Also, true freshman Quinteze Williams (6-5, 276) has been cross-training at both end and tackle this year.

Still, Florida’s top priority moving forward is to sign another prototypical player at the position in addition to Brantley.

Greg Gilmore (Hope Mills, N.C./South View) is off the board following his commitment to LSU on Thursday, and UF only has two options right now in Montravius Adams (Vienna, Ga./Dooly County) and Jaynard Bostwick (Port Saint Lucie, Fla./St. Lucie West Centennial).

Robert Nkemdiche (Loganville,Ga./Grayson) decommitted from Clemson on Thursday, but Ole Miss is all you need to know about him.

After Florida’s win over LSU, Adams said the Gators will “definitely” make his Top 5 and he would “most likely” return to Gainesville for an official visit on Dec. 8. But UF still has work to do to become a serious contender for Adams, and the top task is getting him back on campus for the banquet weekend.

I believe Bostwick the best chance the Gators have at getting another D-tackle. Florida and Miami are his top two schools, although the Canes lead slightly and have for awhile. But if the NCAA slams UM prior to National Signing Day, look for UF to land him.

JUCO DT Toby Johnson (Hutchinson, Kan./Hutchinson Community College) was offered by the Gators in early October, but it looks like Georgia, Tennessee, Oklahoma, Nebraska and Kansas State are ahead of the pack at this point. It should be noted that he tore his ACL and MCL last Saturday and will likely redshirt at whatever school he attends next year.

We need some elite offensive linemen. Are there any that might be able to get into the rotation next year? — conjurer99, Doug

The only guy would be JUCO offensive tackle Trenton Brown (Milledgeville, Ga./Georgia Military). The Gators have led since his official visit for the Bowling Green game. He will unofficially visit FSU sometime next week and then take an official to Oklahoma on Nov. 24, but right now UF is the favorite to pick him up when he makes his decision in late November. At 6-foot-8, 350 pounds, Brown will obviously be bigger than every offensive lineman on Florida’s roster and should see the field in some capacity next year.

Does WR Stacy Coley have any interest in Florida? — Brandon, Jay

Last week, Coley told 247Sports he will start taking his official visits after the season and the six schools in consideration are FSU, Ole Miss, North Carolina, Tennessee, Texas Tech and West Virginia. To my knowledge, UF has not been to any of his games this season or visited his school (Northeast) in Oakland Park. So it’s doesn’t look like there’s interest from either side.

It would appear on the surface that the Miami connections developed by Doc Holiday and Urban Meyer have devolved into FSU/Miami battles and we don’t seem to be the player in S. Florida that we were a few years back. Is this by design or are we just getting beat there? — gatorspook, Les

UF definitely isn’t as dominant in South Florida as it once was, but that’s not by design. I think a lot has to do with the loss of Hill. He was born and raised in Miami and would have built a strong recruiting base for the Gators had he stayed more than one season. Fortunately for Florida, defensive backs coach Travaris Robinson is capable of doing the same in the short-term. Here’s a blog I wrote after Hill’s resignation that addressed how UF can rebound in South Florida.

Do you believe Florida will take 25 signees just to do it, or are they content on their class? — Devin

The Gators now have 77 scholarship players on their roster excluding walk-ons (who won’t count against the 2013 class). With 13 seniors graduating and Floyd and Matt Elam expected to go pro, UF will be able to sign at least 23 recruits. Any other transfers or early declarations will add to that number, and I ultimately think Florida will have room for a full class of 25.

Zach, could you do a list of expected announcement dates for UF targets? — Gator N NC

WR Demarcus Robinson — December (final decision, early enrollee)
WR Marcus North  TBD
OT Laremy Tunsil — Feb. 6 (National Signing Day)
JUCO OT Trenton Brown  late November (enrolling in January)
DT Montravius Adams — January/NSD
DT Jaynard Bostwick — NSD
DE Ebenzer Ogundeko — Decemeber (early enrollee)
S Marcell Harris — Nov. 16 (early enrollee)

Are Muschamp and Co. doing anything to prevent last year’s signing day nightmare? — Matt

By gaining a bunch of commits last winter, spring and summer, Muschamp has already solved the problem. In the 2012 recruiting cycle, he was in contention for eight prospects on NSD and struck out on all of them. This time around, his class should be completed by Feb. 6 and he’ll only have 2-3 targets making decisions. So he avoided the issue by filling up early rather than late, and I expect him to continue doing so in the coming years.

That’s all for this week! Be sure to put your questions for the next mailbag in the comment section below!


  1. …..we have wr’s committed that can make a difference. all bring something different to the table. Hawkins(strength), Fulwood(size/impact player/red zone threat), Bailey(elusiveness/return game), and Thompson(speed). zach, duke dawson 2014 cb apparently set his decision date. could figure out when its supposed to be taking place. he’s a great player and a BIG gator lean

  2. Who cares about class rankings. Let’s address our needs. Zach, it’s never too early right? Considering there’s a great chance we aren’t able to fully address the DT position, can we get a list of guys at the position with UF offers in 2014? I know Travonte Valentine is supposed to be nasty

  3. With us missing on several defenders in our front seven(Anzalone, Gilmore, possibly Adams)? Where do we turn next? What is Dillan Lawsons status with UF and is it even possible for him to come back into the picture?

  4. Biggest question is with all the players possibly leaving to go pro and with the indication of players being able to come in and play early, you would think Big Time prospects would be flocking to UF. Its got to be something why we keep missing on these kids. When meyer was here we alsways got the top talent. He would have gotten Nelson Agholor and Stefon Diggs hands down. Right now those two are doing more than our wide outs combined. Just sad surprised we’re sitting at #2 fingers crossed we dont loose any from here until NSD!

  5. I hope Muschamp and Co keep their foot on the accelerator this recruiting season. I’m not concerned about these media-hound kids creating drama around their commitments (GG). We need kids not afraid to compete with other guys for roster spots. Kids choosing a school because depth is thin at their position are too weak-minded to compete in the SEC (IMO). If I had a dollar for every time Saban told a prospect he’d play his freshman year…..I’d be standing in line at the soup kitchen, ALOT!

    Go Gators!

  6. If we don’t secure some DT’s this class then next year will be rough. This is a line of scrimmage league and you must have 4-6 DT’s that can rotate in order to stay fresh. All of our big guys are leaving: Omar Hunter, Shariff Floyd, Earl Okine, and Maybe Dominique Easley. IF we lose Easley(which would be stupid btw) then the season is lost already. You can’t play with just 3 DT’s in the SEC. Take a look at USC in the PAC 12…not going to well bc they have zero depth. The SEC is much more unforgiving.

    A shame because we are loaded every where else you look.

  7. I think that we all need to remember that these young kids are very fickle and for the same reasons that we lost out on kids last recruiting season (i.e., 7-6 season) can be inversed with a 10-2 season this year.

    Let’s wait until ink is on paper with some of these kids we don’t think we have a shot with landing! If we can find a way to a BCS Bowl game or a 10-2 season, we’ll land our fair share.

    And one other point…let’s not forget that our team’s weakest spot for depth (defense) is Coach Boom’s strength! Go Gators!

  8. @ FlaboyDg

    It’s people like you that get me frustrated. It’s also why we often get labled as one of the worst spoiled fan base. You need to have some perspective my friend. With what Will Muschamp inherited, with what little time he has had, with how our record is now, with how our recruiting class is a whole (forget the star rankings, just look at who is coming in), Will Muschamp has done a phenominal job and is creating something special here. I really like what Muschamp says “we’re not building a team, we’re building a program”. If this recruiting class ended today, I would be extremely happy but you know what, this class is only gonna get better by NSD. GO GATORS!

  9. I’m not frustrated by FlaboyDg, gatorseverywhere but you are exactly right in all respect about this team and program. I think muschamp has done a great job in a short period of time and you can’t BUILD a TEAM nor a PROGRAM in one to two seasons, at least not in this league (SEC). Great job and we need to be a lot more patient as fans because we really don’t know what the coaching staff is up against. GO GATORS !!!!

  10. I hope I speak for the majority, but I like our recruiting class. Could it be better? Sure. Could it be worse? Yes, indeed. There are a lot of young players on this Gator team already, and the ones Muschamp is bringing in seem like good ones to me. I’m a Gator fan for life so I don’t base my feelings upon the merits of one recruiting class, or another; but if you really pay genuine attention to that sort of thing then you ought to see that time is definitely on our side right now as Muschamp builds from the ground up. The future looks very, very bright to me.
    Go Gators!

  11. Get a life! I like most fans find most of your comments disgusting. Grow up and get a life we do not care what you think makes you a fan or expert in recruiting! Please get a life you people don’t make a difference to Gator success or failure. Great information by author….period.

  12. Love this recruiting class.

    I have a lot of trust in Coach Boom’s ability to get the right guys.

    Look at the stellar contributions of Bullard, Fowler, and Humphries. And the very solid contributions of Antonio Morrison.

    That gives me great confidence.

    Go Gators!

  13. How does UF lose one O coordinator, and possibly a second, to head coaching gigs? Our offense has been anemic the last two seasons. Meanwhile, other schools somehow seem to do a better job keeping their coordinators. Can you say Bama???

  14. Gatordean you and Champ both know she ain’t pretty but you can at least through some makeup on that offense and make it look respectable. Playing to win the game with Defense is only half a game. We have been very fortunate. I thank God for every win. More than a few of the games we had no business winning.

  15. Zach,
    Do you know anything about Alex Collins decommiting from Miami and Florida offering him? Do we really need another running back with Kelvin and Adam already in the fold? It seems that if we were not really interested in a recruit we would shut it down to not stir up the recruits we have.

  16. @ Doug and gator woody king, I’m not sure what the coaches are thinking with the interest in another RB (if they are), but the running backs that we have coming in Kevin and Adam I don’t think they are the type that are affraid of competition. Do we NEED another RB, I don’t know!