Davis visits UF with trio of five-star recruits


Florida’s 2015 class has experienced a lot of moving parts over the last two months, but momentum is on the Gators’ side heading into the fall following their latest commitment.

However, they’ve yet to do one thing in this cycle — land a recruit out of the Tampa area.

Clemson beat out UF for Jake Fruhmorgen, Deon Cain and Ray-Ray McCloud III, and receiver Auden Tate is expected to announce Tuesday for Florida State.

George Campbell (left), Ryan Davis and Byron Cowart could all end up at Florida. (Photo by 247Sports)

But the Gators are still in great shape for defensive end Byron Cowart (Seffner Armwood) and receivers George Campbell (Tarpon Springs East Lake) and Ryan Davis (St. Petersburg Lakewood), and all of them visited UF together Saturday.

Florida coach Will Muschamp, his assistants and several players from the Tampa area welcomed them to campus, and five-star defensive end CeCe Jefferson joined the group on campus later in the day.

“It was great just being greeted by the coaches and feeling the love in Gainesville,” Davis said. “Coach Muschamp was waiting right there for us when we came in. That felt great.

“Then my cousin Dante Fowler came and showed us lots of love. We also got to hang out with Vernon (Hargreaves), Alvin Bailey and Matt Jones. So all the Tampa players were there and all of us had a good time talking. We just had fun being around each other. It felt like home.”

Davis and Fowler grew up together and played for the same little league football team when they were younger. They have a close bond, Davis said, and Fowler has advised him on the recruiting process while also throwing in some pitches for UF.

“He just tells me to make the best decision for me and go to the place that’s best for me and my family,” Davis said. “Don’t go somewhere because it’s my favorite school. But he also talks Florida up to me.

“He said it’s the place to be, the coaches will take care of me and they fell off last year but it’s not going to happen again. He said I can help Florida get back on top like it used to be and I’m a piece to the puzzle that they need.”

Muschamp offered Davis on June 2 and he visited last month. On Saturday’s trip, he watched film with offensive coordinator Kurt Roper.

“He told me I can come in and get immediate playing time if I prove myself,” Davis said. “They love me as a receiver — my route running, my hands, my quickness and how they can use me in space, in the slot or as a deep threat. They also like that I’m the quarterback for my high school because I could play in a wildcat formation running and throwing the ball.

“Coach Muschamp told me, ‘We need you. We want you here. I know what you can do and I feel like I can get you where you want to go with our offense.’ ”

The 5-foot-10, 161-pounder plans to narrow down his list of more than 30 offers soon and make a decision in October. Davis said the success he’s seen Fowler and Hargreaves have with the Gators will help their chances, and he talks to Campbell and Cowart about teaming up at UF.

“Basically every guy from Tampa that’s gone there has been successful,” Davis said. “That’s a big plus for me. I feel like it’s great to see guys from our area come together and create a bond as friends who want to play with each other.

“We talk about doing it at Florida. We visited a few schools together this summer, and we liked Florida and what they’re doing with the place. We’re enjoying the recruiting process right now, but we’re going to see how everything goes with them. We’re just playing it by ear and weighing our options.”

What would happen if the four recruits who visited UF on Saturday all end up picking the Gators?

“Well,” Davis said, “I feel like we could win a couple national championships if we played there together.”


  1. I think UF has a good chance to land Davis. He is the younger brother of a former FSU player, but I don’t think FSU wants him. That’s not to say he isn’t a good player, but FSU doesn’t have much more room and Dalvin Cook’s teammate, Da ‘Vante Phillips is probably a lock for FSU. That could change if FSU doesn’t land Auden Tate this week, another player higher on their board than Davis. As for the other two, it will depend on whether UF improves on the field this year.

  2. It can’t be stated enough how important our on field success this year is to recruitinging. A fast start would really help too coming off of last years debacle. This season is easily the most important in a VERY long time for the future of the program. I just wish our schedule wasn’t so ridiculously tough.

  3. Recruits are going to see how we produce. Coach just spoke to the media and here are a few bullet points to keep the positive vibe going:

    • Younger Players are ahead of the game with regards to installing the playbook
    • Andre Debose and Matt Rolin are 100% to start camp!
    • Demarcus Robinson has really matured as a player and person.
    • Coach is confident with the first seven on the O-Line.
    • Turnover margin is the number one goal of this team this year.
    • Bullard can play both defensive tackle and defensive end.
    • Coach is looking for “a lot of points” on offense
    • “When you play against us, you’re going to have to tackle in space,”
    • Ahmad Fulwood has gained size and gotten stronger in the offseason.
    • Matt Jones is up to 230-pounds!
    • Alex McCalister is up to 248-pounds!
    • Jarrad Davis is set to have a big year according to coach.
    • The offense is going to help Kelvin Taylor get out into space.

    I think recruits are going to like what they see!!

    Go Gators!


  4. Zach, how many of those guys do you think we get. I really hope Cece stick (I know he’s not officially committed, but come on let’s be real). I know it’s early and I shouldn’t get too excited about someone who hasn’t even played their senior year in high school, but I just can’t help it with Cece. Guy is a MONSTER. I think he’ll start from day 1. That’s how good I think he is. Already just as a junior he’s shown he’s more explosive off the ball than most, he’s got good instincts, he’s strong, he’s fast, he doesn’t give up on any play (which has led to a few good sacks and tackles for him), and what I love the most he’s got excellent hit power, which will always help you get those fumbles especially on wide open hit on the QB. And all this just as a junior. Playing at UF? He could be unstoppable.

  5. I’m really confident that ALL of these young men will be Gators in the end.They all seem incrddibly grounded, down to earth, and overall good guys. Let’s hope the season plays out to be a great one. GO GATORS!!

  6. I’m really confident that ALL of these young men will be Gators in the end.They all seem incredibly grounded, down to earth, and overall good guys. Let’s hope the season plays out to be a great one. GO GATORS!!

  7. by That_UAT_Guy,

    “I wonder whether Jesse will backtrack and try to say he knew all along when our offense actually turns out to be really good…”

    It seems we are all wondering if the offense or overall team for that matter will be any good……….

  8. We really need these guys to make this class a top five pick. Cow art is the beast of the group, but, they all bring something to the table. Campbell will kill it in this offense, as will Davis. We’ll turn some of the other guys back to UF, after they see how good Roper’s offense is going to be and that Muschamp won’t be going anywhere. If we get these guys, Ivie, Prince and a few other top recruits, we could knock Bamer out of that #1 spot.

  9. No Mushmouth it’s just you haters wondering. Most fans I talk to and see commenting are pretty sure our offense and team will be good. It’s OK I’m sure you negative nancies will jump right in acting like you knew all along once the season starts.

  10. what i want to know is why our recruits are “unstoppable”, with a class ranking of 7th-9th last year, and currently ranked about 20th, while alabama, fsu, and others have recruits in the top 3 class rankings last year, and doing far better than we in this year’s class rankings thus far…yet somehow alabama and fsu recruits presumably can be easily stopped by our defense while no one can stop our offense, lol.

    no offense, but let’s stay grounded in reality.

  11. jerabaub – who on here said that Alabama and FSU recruits can easily by our defense, while no one can stop our offense.

    I am optimistic that the Gators will be better this year for a few reasons. The Gatos get back several key players that had season ending injuries last year. The Gators were ravaged by injuries last year and is not likely to happen again. I really like the new offensive line coach – Mike Summers. I am hopeful that Roper’s system will help Driskell. The Gators defensive line and secondary should be very, very good. Hopefully the linebackers will better. Place kicking can only get better as it was horrible last year.

  12. It appears that the Gators have done all they cn do, as of now. Unless there is a dramatic upturn on the field, the Gators are going to have a bad year on the recruiting front. Of the ten guys pledged now, only four are from the state of Florida, and none of them are among the top players in the state. This latest rumor about Campbell is just the icing on the cake. To go from being a virtual lock for UF to pledging to your most hated rival is depressing. The only worst thing that could happen is to see Central Florida get someone the Gators want. Like the cliche that elections have consequences, finishing 4-8 and being the fourth best team in your home state is something that is impossible to overcome. There is a glimmer of hope at the end of the dark tunnel the Gators are staring at right now, but it takes a winning product on the field for that to happen.

  13. Wow – what a depressing group. As far as I can see, the Gators are still the favorite to land Cowart, Jefferson and Ivey. If the Gators stay away from the incredible amount injuries they had last year, they will be a lot better this year. If the recruits can see the team is headed in the right direction, the Gators will get their share.

  14. gatorup, I don’t see Cowart going to FSU. They are very much in the mix for Sweat, I can’t see both him and Cowart going to FSU. But I do see UF being in serious trouble is they don’t do well this Fall. But there can be a renaissance, look what Butch Jones is doing, he’s selling a hope, and doing quite well at it. UF can do better than that simply because of the state they’re in.

  15. Hey Guys, im as big a gator fan as anyone. Id like for us to go undefeated and sigh every top prospect we go after. Trouble is it aint going to happen. Im just being realistic. Look at all the top prospects we were in “good shape” with this summer, now we are down to a very small handful. I hope we have a great season and can turn this thing around, but right now i think you will all agree this thing is starting to go in the wrong direction and is picking up steam!

  16. gatorup I don’t know where you’re getting your news, but everything I’m seeing is looking good for the Gators unless we totally blow it on the field. We just recently landed George Brown, Adonis Thomas, and Jerome Baker among a couple other commits. 24/7 crystal ball predictions are like 80% for Campbell to UF. Cece Jefferson has his heart set on UF and will sign barring any major developments. Byron Cowart is very high on UF and will likely join Cece in Gainesville if we look good on the field. Martez Ivey is thought to be favoring the Gators. Not to mention we’re in GREAT shape to get add Tevon Coney, Jeff Holland, and Roquan Smith to Thomas and Baker in what will be a HUGE linebacker haul. And that’s only scratching the surface of the names we’re in on right now. To tell you the truth I like having only 10 compared to Bama, FSU, and UT having huge classes already. There are still HUGE names out there to grab and those classes are reaching their limits while we still have plenty of room to snag all those big names. Also you’re forgetting Muschamp is the master of the flip. Even if recruiting weren’t going as well as it is I wouldn’t be worried. As soon as we start winning on the field, more and more people will be taking second looks. Combine that with Muschamp’s flipping ability and the battle for guys like McCloud, Bello, and Tate is far from over. There is certainly nothing to be worried about yet. Only time there’ll be something to worry about is if the losses start piling up, which I don’t see happening, but that’s another story for another comment. This one is long enough

  17. gatorup – I don’t think anyone is predicting that the Gators will go undefeated or that they will sign every top prospect they go after. The Gators have a very tough schedule this year. If they stay healthy, I could see them going 9-4 with the last win being a bowl victory. They do that and play well in the games the lose and they will show the recruits they are headed in the right direction. They are still looking good with three of the top ten prospects – Cowart, Jefferson and Ivey.

    The season hasn’t even started yet, so I will disagree that things are headed in the wrong direction.

  18. gator863: we are looking good with Jefferson. As for Cowart , its 50-50 at best.As for Ivey, what seemed a lock a few weeks ago now is 60-40 at best. IMO we can wave goodby to Jeff Holland also. Fantastic talent but academics are to poor to be admitted to UF. He is headed to Auburn.

  19. gator863: If you like 247’s site, perhaps you might want to check a little closer what their numbers show. For example, they have Martez Ivey as a heavy lean to UF. If you look a little closer you will see that after 5/28/14 only two predictions are for UF, while nine are for Auburn. That is a troubling trend. As you can see, I was very generous with my 60-40 odds.

  20. gatorup – Three out of the last 5 have been for UF – that perfectly fits your 60-40 odds. Overall they are still favored to sign him. UF has several things going for them in recruiting Martez Ivey.

    The key is the Gators having a better season this year. They do and they will end up with a top 10 recruiting class.

    You can have your pessimistic view of things. I prefer to be optimistic.

  21. gator863: Im not being pessimistic, im being realistic! You probably thought we still had a shot at a national title after we lost to Miami! That dude is not being optimistic, its called something else! So you are happy with the way things are going and nothing needs to change. Ron Zook would love you, he would still be coach. Obviously we are both Gator fans so lets let Zach have a say. Zach, since you have knowledge of the subject, please tell us where UF, stands with Cozart, Ivey, Jefferson, Holland, and Campbell.

  22. gatorup – The Gators were 11-2 a couple years ago with very bad offense. I think the defense this year could be great and the offense can be better than a couple years ago. Look at the injuries they had last year – starting qb, back-up qb, top running back, top receiver, 3 starting offensive lineman and that is just on offense. The schedule is very tough this year, but I could see them ending up with 8 or 9 wins. I am certainly not predicting them to go undefeated and winning the National Championship. I think I am being very realistic. If they have a better season and the offense shows signs of being good, I think they will no problem getting recruits. No, they won’t get all they go after – no one ever does – but they will get enough to have a top 10 class.

  23. Nope we at least go 10-2. At least. That’s not being optimistic at all that’s realistic. We went 11-2 in 12 and this team resembles that team much more than the 13 injured team. And I don’t think Roper is nearly as dumb as Pease. Muschamp has proven he can deliver a top 10 defense no matter what so that is taken care of. Kyle Christy is out of his slump and even without him Townsend is a top class punter. We get THE best kick returner in the nation back from injury. We may not have a Caleb Sturgis but what we’ve seen from the kicking competition in spring and falls shows we can have a reliable kicking game. So special teams should be one of the best in the country. Remind anyone else of 2012? Now all that’s left is the offense which I can already tell you is going to be miles ahead. Kurt Roper and his new system has breathed life and most importantly confidence into the offense. We should also have an actual starting QB (and Jeff is a great one) leading us and we’ve got more depth at QB to survive an injury. We have THE best backfield in the league. Taylor is special. He was unstoppable last year (unless Pease decided not to play him for whatever stupid reason) and he’s only gotten bigger, faster, and better this year. A healthy Matt Jones will be as good if not better than Taylor. Mack Brown is a steady Gilly type back who I would not be disappointed if he started and he’s a 3rd stringer! Think about that. Adam Lane is going to be a special guy and he’ll be darn near impossible to stop in short yardage situations. Herndon is a guy who doesn’t get many opportunities but looks great when he does. And Powell is amazing for a freshmen. Great instincts, quick, one cut through the hole and gone. I would be very comfortable if he was our 2nd string which he won’t be. That’s a heck of a backfield. Mike Summers has the O line looking better than they have in years. We have good depth and even the freshmen are providing solid depth. The receivers are deeper and more talented than Driskel. Even if he’s not as great a QB as I think he’ll be, having guys like McGhee, Dunbar, and Robinson will make him look it. Those are guys that you don’t have to throw a perfect pass to because they just know how to make those plays. Especially McGhee. He’s a guy that on a 3rd and long situation when no one is open you can just throw it up to this guy and trust him to come down with it. That is a HUGE help to a QB. Not to mention the immediate HUGE impact it’ll be if Debose breaks out like he was supposed to before the injury. And don’t count that out. The talent has always been there. Now the attitude is there, the work ethic is there, the hunger is there, the humility is there, everything. With all that I see no reason this team shouldn’t build off of 2012 and have an SEC title run. Remember last season was the perfect storm against us. Everything went wrong at exactly the worst times. This isn’t last year. Instead everything seems to be going great at the best times. The momentum is ours. And never underestimate a hungry team. It’s not optimistic. It’s realistic