Carter: “Florida hasn’t fallen behind other schools”

Carter plans to make a signing day decision. His four finalists are Florida, Florida State, Georgia and LSU.. (Photo by Zach Abolverdi/The Gainesville Sun)

LAKE BUENA VISTA — Over the past month, Florida appears to have faded out of the picture for five-star recruit Lorenzo Carter.

The Norcross (Ga.) defensive end named the Gators his leader in the summer and gave them his first official visit. However, he did not make a return trip to Gainesville for the Florida State game as planned.

Georgia is now viewed as the front-runner for the Under Armour All-American. The Bulldogs hosted him a few times this fall and will receive his final official visit on Jan. 31. He’s also visiting FSU and LSU this month, his other two finalists.

Although things seem to be pointing toward a UGA commitment from Carter on signing day, he claims UF remains in the running.

“Florida hasn’t fallen behind other schools,” Carter said. “I just realized that I’m not at the level to say any school is my leader right now. Everybody is so close to each other.”

Carter said the UF coaches have consistently kept in contact with him more than any other staff, and that has helped keep their chances.

“I think that’s one of the main reasons they stayed up top,” he said. “I’m comfortable with the coaches, and I know what they’re about. If they were a shaky coaching staff that I didn’t really know and they had a bad season, I’d probably look somewhere else.”

The 6-foot-5, 235-pounder admits he worried at times about Will Muschamp’s job security, but the vote of confidence from athletic director Jeremy Foley eased his concerns.

“You couldn’t help but worry,” he said. “Florida is one of my top schools. Everybody saw the season they had. To be in the SEC and have a bad season, that could cost someone their job. So when the AD came out and backed Muschamp, I was a lot more comfortable.”

“I know their coaches, I know their players and I know they’re working hard down there in Gainesville. It’s not going to happen again.”

During the contact period in December, he received an in-home visit from defensive coordinator D.J. Durkin, defensive line coach Brad Lawing, defensive backs coach Travaris Robinson and receivers coach and recruiting coordinator Joker Phillips. They will be at Carter’s house again in a few weeks with Muschamp.

“Coach Lawing is like my third grandpa, coach Muschamp is like one of those crazy uncles, and coach T-Rob is like a little brother that’s annoying,” Carter said. “But they feel like family.”

Florida has won over the majority of Carter’s immediate family members.

“My dad likes coach Muschamp more, and my mom likes (UGA) coach (Mark) Richt more,” he said. “Then my sister London, she watched the Florida-Georgia game this year and told me, ‘I just see you at Florida. Their defense plays with swag.’

“But they all let me know it’s my decision to make, and they’re going to back me up wherever I go.”

What will UF have to do to win him over?

“It’s simple,” Carter said, “just keep being Florida.”


  1. This is getting a little annoying,it’s understanding that we can’t sign them all.For the past 3 or 4 yrs. we have top recruits in our pocket,the closer we get to signing day each yr. the more they start wavering.Understand we can’t get them all,but man at some point this recruiting yr. we were the leader for (L.Carter,J Adoree,J.Adams,D.Cook,the DT for Georgia,& the LB for Bama can’t recall their name.Didn’t like the way Coach Meyer went out but he could close,we just keep losing out on to many top recruits last couple years.Not to say that Nelson.A & Stephon.D are top notch receivers.Could you just imagine those 2 in the Swamp

  2. If predictions always came true, no one would ever play the game. The same is true regarding with the game of recruiting. Nothing is final until the letter of intent is signed and delivered to the student-athlete’s school of choice. Fuss about who signed and who did not after signing day, not before. If you want to help, why do you not try and convince the recruits of your choice to come to the great University of Florida instead of giving them reasons not to come? Just some food for thought. You are either a part of the problem or a part of the solution – your choice. Go Gators!

  3. Islander and dub, dont count on it, the Gators will be returning to the National Stage in 2014. If you wish, you can join Dalvin at FSU and get beat next year, but 2013 will not be repeated. Im a believer in my team.

  4. Sounds like a great young man. His family’s involvement surely is constructive and he seems to be a guy with the self-assurance to stand on his own decision. I have a hunch he’s going to be a Gator and follow Dante Fowler. Go Gators!

  5. And I think Maurice is right that UF will be back in the picture this fall. The inability of some readers to see the impact of 29 injured players off a roster of 80, suffering amid the most demanding schedule in the SEC, has become do tiresome. I hope all of us start interacting about the potential and plans for our 2014 team. The “let’s get rid of Muschamp” gang have nothing new to say, have become bored. Let’s all talk about ways these Gators can succeed and move on.

  6. Yes because Will Grier, Khari Clark, David Sharpe, Quincy Wilson, Deandre Goolsbey, Vernon Hargreaves, Kelvin Taylor, Demarcus Robinson, Dante Fowler, Jonathan Bullard, et all are all just nobodies and this staff asn’t recruited any good players whatsoever! Smh. Some Gator fans… It’s perfectly fine to want the best coach for the program and want to get rid of a coach that’s not going to get the job done. But now is not the time for complaining and negativity. No matter how much you complain or rage against Muschamp he WILL be our coach next year. You’re not going to change that. So what good is it doing? None. It’s only doing harm. Now is the time for Gator fans to pull together and love and support our team, players AND coaches. And let me tell you this don’t even try that I support the players not the coach crap because that’s impossible. If you don’t support the coach you’re rooting for him to fail and for that to happen the team as a whole must fail which means you’re rooting for the team to fail. Fans do NOT root for the team to fail. Now is the time for fans to jump off the negativity train and support our Gators and prove that we’re the best fans in the world. Then after the season starts if Muschamp fails and everything goes wrong you can sit on your high horse and give the I told you sos and I’ll be right with you calling for his head. But it’s not that time yet. It’s time to stop turning every positive article into a Muschamp and Driskel bash session and start SUPPORTING YOUR TEAM.

  7. Oops! I didn’t mean the “let’s get rid of Muschamp” contingent has become “bored”. That was an auto-correct glitch. I meant to say they have become “bores” with nothing new coming from their posts. Why not do some thoughtful analysis of who’s leaving, who’s coming back, why and how this player will fit Roper’s offense or Muschamp and Durkin’s defense?

  8. T- Bone, Have you been to Vegas yet? I’m sure you could make a lot of money if you know something the rest of us mortals don’t. Also, UF should not have to worry about FSU getting Carter. They just got a commit from another defensive end and they are about full, so either they don’t feel good about Carter or they rated the other guy higher.

  9. I agree, Arizona. I’m not at all sure that Muschamp is the right coach for us, but there’s absolutely no good to be gained by railing against him right now. We know he’s our coach for next year, and this constant complaining can only hurt recruiting and keep a cloud of gloom over the program. He’ll either succeed next year and we’ll all be happier, or he’ll fail, and there will be plenty of opportunity to bash him and send him on his way then. In the meantime, all the negativity only hurts the program.