The Opening preview


Recruits travel to Oregon today for the top high school football combine of the summer.

‘The Opening’ takes place this week at Nike World Headquarters in Beaverton, Ore.

The event will be televised on ESPNU Tuesday from 8-10 p.m. ET for the SPARQ rating national championship, Wednesday from 8-10:30 p.m. ET for 7on7 pool play and Thursday from 8-11 p.m. ET for the 7on7 semifinal and championship as well as the linemen challenge finals.

Sheriron Jones going through the first day of the Elite 11 camp. (Photo by Student Sports/Photo by Tom Hauck)

Three UF commits are competing this year in receiver Derrick Dillon, quarterback Sheriron Jones and cornerback Marcus Lewis.

“I’m definitely looking forward to it,” Lewis said. “Just going out there with all the gear they give us and competing against the best on ESPNU. And I’ll be getting better and learning from pro players and coaches that have experience on the college and NFL level.”

Lewis has yet to meet any members of Florida’s 2015 class, so he’s ready to see Dillon and Jones.

“It will be nice finally meeting someone,” Lewis said. “I heard they’re both great players. I can’t wait to see them live. I might go against them, actually. It’s going to be fun.”

Jones arrived at Nike on Saturday and is one of 18 quarterbacks going through the Elite 11 camp in conjunction with The Opening. The Elite 11 will air Aug. 17 at 8 p.m. ET on ESPNU, though the winner will be announced at the conclusion of The Opening.

Dillon is playing on team Alpha Pro and Lewis is on the Landsharks. Jones’ team will be determined once 7on7 pool play starts.

Several targets for the Gators will also compete in The Opening, including running backs Ray-Ray McCloud III and Dexter Williams (Miami commit), receivers George Campbell and Auden Tate, offensive linemen Martez Ivey and Javon Patterson, defensive end Byron Cowart, safety Jaquan Johnson and linebackers Te’Von Coney, Roquan Smith and Adonis Thomas, who plans to decide between Alabama and Florida on Aug. 1.

Click the links below for more information.

Team rosters
Alphabetical roster
Elite 11 finalists


  1. Rivals recruiting has UF with only 2 **** recruits out of 9 verbals.

    The problem I have with that is ESPN has UF with 8 **** recruits,
    and 7 of them are on the ESPN Top 300 List.

    While 3 are at the Nike ‘Opening’ that starts today, (the Top HS football combine of the summer). Elite 11 QB-DT Sheriron Jones – CB Marcus Lewis – Ath/WR Derrick Dillon

    Leaving me with the opinion that rivals recruiting is so FoS that their eyes have all turned dark brown….. :~p)

  2. I wouldn’t worry about how one recruiting service or another rates recruits. It only matters if the coaches think they can play for UF. It’s not too long ago that UF had a class that was rated one of the best ever, in 2010. There are still a couple of guys left from that class, Leon Orr comes to mind, but not one even made it to Atlanta. I don’t think I ever see Oklahoma, for example, rated very highly when it comes to recruiting, yet they kicked Alabama’s ass last year on the field. Let’s just trust that Muschamp and his staff know who they want and can get a fair percentage of them. The recruiting rankings are just for the die-hard fans and I’m as guilty anyone, but I’m smart enough to not start counting titles based on how well a kid played in high school.

  3. Well said. Our roster is loaded with 4* players (some 5’s, some 3’s) and look at the last 3 years. One good season, 2 bad ones. No trips to Atlanta. This is not an exact science, roll the dice and see who emerges.
    I do think they have done a pretty good job this cycle of identifying some under the radar guys that will be studs. Looking back on the Urban years only about 50% of those guys ever saw the field for one reason or another, maybe that’s why we had no depth when he left.

  4. A lot of our problems are due to player development and have been dating back to the Urban Meyer days. If you look at our starting LB’s going into this season you see 2 full time starters that were barely ranked, Davis and Morrisson, yet 3 4 and 5 star players, Taylor, McMillan and Anzolone will be splitting time. Anzolone and McMillan are understandable as they are only sophmores but Taylor is a 5th year senior and while he has been serviceable for the last couple of years he should be a full time starter at his position. Even in the defensive backfield we have seen our share of 4 and 5 stars transfer or get switched to other positions, Showers, Shaw, Finley and Dowling, while others get passed up by incoming freshmen, Maye, Poole and Gorman.
    Let’s hope we break this cycle starting this year.

  5. Gator Drew, I would agree weve had problems developing players on the offensive side of the ball, but on the defensive side of the ball I’d have to whole heartedly disagree. Sure not every player has worked out, but you’ll never get every player to work out. Some players just bust no matter what coaches they play for, some take longer to develop than others, and some just don’t have the right attitudes or work ethic no matter what the coaches. Recruiting is imprecise that way. Sometimes you just get the wrong guys. Look at our total body of work. Look at how great our defenses have been, how many great players we’ve had, and how many defensive draft picks we’ve had (and will have. We’re developing guys on the defensive side just fine. It’s the offensive side I’d say that hasn’t be developed as well. But hopefully these new hires will change that.

  6. UAT, I didn’t have time to go into the offense….lol…We have has more than our share of woes there… but it does seem that we have missed at some on the defensive side when you consider the overall rankings we’ve had there. I feel pretty good about the 2015 class though if we can pull out 9 or 10 wins this year. Go Gators.

  7. First off, I’n NOT worried, just the opposite.

    Taking one year with Okla to make your point is pretty weak ntcrze.

    Okla Bowls: They are 5-6 in Bowls, 0-3 in BCS-NC’s since 2003.

    2003 L Ok 14 – 21 LSU BCS-NC
    2004 L Ok 19 – 55 USCw BCS-NC
    2006 L Ok 42 – 43 Boise State – Fiesta
    2007 L Ok 28 – 48 WVa – Fiesta
    2008 L Ok 14 – 24 Florida BCS-NC
    2012 L Ok 13 – 41 Tex A&M – Cotton

    And it has nothing to do with the recruit rankings that I referred to.
    I was making the point that rivals recruiting is way off base with their UF rankings.
    ESPN – 8 are Four Stars, 7 are on the ESPN Top 300 list.
    And it not just them, the Nike Opening has 3 of our recruits, but rivals only has UF with 2 that are even four stars. BS on them.

    Our record over the last 3 years has little to do with the excellent recruiting imo.
    2011 – Will dumped 12-13 of Meyers problem children, like Janoris among others. He still has a winning season and beat tOSU in the Gator Bowl.
    2012 – Will was 11-2 and voted SEC CoY
    2013 – An NCAA record for injuries in a season resulted in a 4-8, not the recruiting.
    His 3 classes have averaged a #4 with 39 ESPN Top 300’s.
    2014 – He Is well on his way to another Top 4 Class. (per ESPN)
    UF Top 10 in the Nation every year on the defense.
    Constant coaching staff cluster along with the injuries have been the problem imoho. Stabilize the staff, avoid the injuries, and the talent is there.

  8. We have talent (although on OL not sure), young team (since seniors don’t stay), have to see results this year on the field and everything will take care of itself. If not, big problems going forward.
    Have 6 games we “should” win, 6 underdog type games (at this moment). Think we need to win at least 3 of those or else!!

  9. GG, check out the 2014 OL roster: (cross-training)

    75 RT Chaz Green rsSr 6-5 300 – (LT)
    73 RG Tyler Moore rsJr 6-5 325 – (RT)
    76 C Max Garcia rsSr 6-5 294 – (LG & LT)
    74 LG Trenton Brown Sr 6-8 350 – (LT)
    70 LT D.J. Humphries Jr 6-5 290
    Speed at tackle, size at guard, rsSr at center. The starters are solid.
    63 OG-C Trip Thurman Jr 6-5 305
    72 OG-OT Drew Sarvary Jr 6-6 310 (juco)
    55 OG Rod Johnson rsFr 6-5 308 (OT)
    54 C-OG Cameron Dillard rsFr 6-4 297
    71 OG/DT Antonio Riles rsFr 6-4 288 (moved to OG in spring)
    53 LT Kavaris Harkless Fr 6-5 282 (OG)
    78 LT David Sharpe Fr 6-6 336 ***** (#2 OT)
    52 OG Travis Dorsey Fr 6-2 333
    77 OT Andrew Mike Fr 6-6 276
    71 OL Nolan Kelleher Fr 6-5 311 (redshirt, rehabbing HS back injury)

    79 OL Matthew Fuchs rsSo 6-2 248
    69 OL Nick Davis rsFr 6-3 251
    0 OL Vincent Dimenna Fr 6-1 279
    0 OL Zach Shinn Fr 6-2 283