Before we get into the Mail Stack, I hope everyone takes time to remember and reflect today.
It’s been 13 years since the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. My memory is terrible and I don’t recall a lot of my childhood, but that is a day I’ll never forget.
All the lives lost. All the people affected.
I still remember coming home from middle school and walking into my living room, where our babysitter was in tears on the couch watching the T.V.
The teachers and faculty at my school decided not to tell any of the students, so I went all day without knowing what had happened.
Back then football was pretty much all I cared about, so seeing the sports world come to a complete stop really hit home with me and changed my perspective in a big way.
At every game I’ve attended since, I’ve said the pledge of allegiance and national anthem with a little more pride and passion.
And I will again this Saturday night.
On to the questions!
How many commits are the coaches looking to get in this class? Taking out current commits, how many open spots does that leave us to fill? — KyGator
The Gators have 11 verbal commitments and will add at least 10 more.
With 17 graduating seniors and 81 scholarship players excluding walk-ons (who won’t count against recruiting next year), Florida currently has room for 21 signees in the 2015 class before attrition.
Dante Fowler Jr. should already have NFL paperwork in order, and his early departure would bring that number up t0 22. However, Jake McGee could return next year on a medical hardship waiver.
When the dust settles after the season, you’ll probably see UF have a full class size of 25 signees.
How are we doing in O-line recruiting, knowing we are short again this year when it comes to depth? — @davemock
Florida’s offensive line depth is still not where Will Muschamp would like it to be, but he has made considerable improvement in the past three recruiting cycles (including the current one). After signing a total of just six linemen from 2010-2012, the Gators signed 12 in the last two classes and have four committed for 2015.
UF’s four pledges — George Brown, Mike Horton, Tyler Jordan and Brandon Sandifer — are rated three star-prospects by most recruiting sites, but all hold offers from four of these six schools: Alabama, Florida, Florida State, Georgia, South Carolina and Ohio State.
The Gators are still in contention for guard Jalen Merrick — another three-star lineman with a lengthy offer list — and tackles Matthew Burrell, Martez Ivey and Isaiah Prince, who are all ranked top-100 prospects by at least two recruiting sites. Those four remaining targets attended Friday Night Lights on July 25.
So UF is on track to have much better offensive line numbers in the coming years.
What are the chances of Florida flipping Jordan Cronkite? Also are they recruiting TE Devonaire Clarington? — @DevinLamarr
The Gators are one of Clarington’s top teams and could receive an official visit from him, but they have their work cut out for him.
The hometown Hurricanes are believed to have the edge for Clarington, and UF may have trouble landing a tight end of his caliber with three signed in the last class and one already on board (Camrin Knight) for 2015.
Florida is definitely a threat to steal Cronkite from Miami. With three other running backs committed to UM, his pledge is not very solid and he plans to visit Gainesville this weekend.
UF will likely have to flip a RB to take one in this class, and Cronkite is certainly a candidate to switch his commitment.
Percentage chance we flip Ray-Ray McCloud III? — @GatorDad55
I’d say upwards of 40 percent.
The Gators were a close second when McCloud committed to Clemson in late July. Several sources told The Sun his family preferred Florida, but McCloud had reservations about the stability of the football program.
That’s why many believe UF could potentially flip him with another season like 2012 and an improved offense. McCloud is intent on using official visits, but Clemson doesn’t allow its commits to take trips.
Things will get interesting in the coming months if McCloud doesn’t back off his plans and the Gators start winning games again.
Chances at Ryan Davis and any other potential flips? — @JonathanMoulden
As I wrote two weeks ago, I think the writing is on the wall with Davis. He attended the first two games and visited Gainesville four times in the last six weeks.
Davis is officially visiting Maryland this weekend with Byron Cowart, but both prospects appear to be Florida’s to lose at this time.
In addition to Cronkite and McCloud, Miami commit Dexter Williams and UCLA commit T.J. Simmons are two more running backs to keep an eye on. North Carolina commits Javarius Davis and William Sweet remain on Florida’s radar.
The Gators will continue to recruit Deon Cain (Clemson) and George Campbell (FSU) as well as Missouri WR/TE pledge Daniel Imatorbhebhe, who is scheduled to officially visit UF this weekend.
Defensively, Texas A&M DT commit Daylon Mack is showing serious interest in Florida and will be at the LSU game on an official.
That’s all for this week! Be sure to leave your questions for the next mailbag in the comment section below.