Latest recruiting haul meets major needs for UF

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In case you missed it, and I know you probably didn’t, Florida landed three ESPN300 members Monday.

Not only was this the biggest haul of the 2014 class, it’s up there as one of the most important recruiting days for UF in recent memory.

Nothing may ever outdo five-stars Matt Elam, Sharrif Floyd and Ronald Powell picking the Gators at the 2010 Army All-American Bowl, but Monday was just as huge as last year’s Junior Day event considering only half of the six commits ended up signing with Florida.

Grier (left) and Lane (right) at The Opening in July. (Photo by GatorCountry.com)

Despite getting five receivers in 2013, two of which are already first-team offensive players in Ahmad Fulwood and Demarcus Robinson, the Gators still need more weapons at the position. They couldn’t have asked for a better one than Ermon Lane, especially with few realistic options remaining on the board.

When quarterback commit Will Grier takes over for Jeff Driskel in 2015, he’s going to have a handful of talented targets at wideout to go along with a strong stable of running backs and a deep offensive line group.

Moving over to defense, the Gators are sitting pretty in the front seven. They stocked up on defensive linemen, linebackers and safeties in the previous class, which is why there won’t be many taken in this cycle.

Conversely, just one cornerback was signed last year — Vernon Hargreaves III. And of the two who came in 2012, one (Brian Poole) moved to safety and the other (Willie Bailey) transferred.

Wilson (left) and Lammons (right) during their visit to Florida in March. (Photo by Wilson)

After this season, Hargreaves could be the only player left at the position. UF is likely losing Loucheiz Purifoy and Marcus Roberson as well as seniors Jeremy Brown and Jaylen Watkins.

Even if Poole and starting safety Cody Riggs switch back to corner, it be won’t enough depth. That’s why the Gators have four CB commits and will keep searching for more.

And the latest additions, Chris Lammons and Quincy Wilson, shouldn’t cause Adoree’ Jackson and Jalen Tabor to cool on Florida. All they have to do is look at the roster.

Moreover, Wilson and Duke Dawson could eventually grow into safeties in college, while Jackson is being recruited for both sides of the ball and wants a role at UF similar to Purifoy’s.

13 COMMENTS

  1. I have not heard Poole’s name mentioned as a safety. I have heard it mentioned as a nickel back, which is usually played by a corner, correct? I also watched Poole in the spring, and he was definitely playing a corner position then. Just curious. But you can never have enough defensive corners….and safeties.

    • JonnhyBallGame, yes UF would lose a spot for 2014 if Debose gets granted a sixth year of eligibility. And TampaGator, Poole played primarily safety as a freshman and told me at media day he’ll likely stay there for this season. I expect him to move back eventually, but right now he’s not a full-time corner.

  2. Zach,
    Do you plan getting in contact with Tabor? I think he would be a big miss, even with the DBs that are committed. His combination of size/athleticism/skills, similar to Purifoy, are hard to come by. Do you think there is a legitimate chance that Adoree’ and Jalen join this class in the end? Also, somewhat off topic, do you know if the College Football Live Summer Bus tour is coming to Gainesville? Thx.

  3. I think Adoree’ and Jamal are the two final pieces with Tabor being possible icing on the cake. That’s what i think the staff should push for right now. Randolph is the only other WR I think we should push for a commitment from as of right now. Finish up with Carter and maybe Hand at DE, Juco TE McNeil, and either RB Fournette/Bo/or Mixon. That would put us at 22 and done. LB and DT we could work on in 2015 class with strong group up and coming.

  4. Zach, I think Tabor would definitely be a coup for the Gator staff. Great haul over the weekend as well. I am also concerned about Brian Poole. I was real excited about him & now it seems as though he’s not even being mentioned in the mix anywhere. What gives with his situation?

  5. GoGator, Muschamp is going to let it play out in practice. Staver should beat out those guys with his arm and experience reps in Grier’s first year. Grier would RS. Then competition gets real in 2016. Hard choice for Champ then.