Ivey won’t be influenced by teammate, coaches

Auburn and Florida are battling for Martez Ivey (Photo by Blake Alderman/Rivals)

Martez Ivey and his Apopka team won the Class 8A state championship Saturday with a 30-23 win over Miami Columbus.

The five-star offensive tackle was overwhelmed with emotion after the game, a feeling he wanted to embrace before his recruitment heats up.

“I’m excited, you know?” Ivey said. “This moment right here, I’m not going to let college take this away right now. I’m hoping to make a decision soon. I’m going to think about it over Christmas break and just pray about it. Hopefully I make the right decision.”

According to Ivey, who is “50-50” between Auburn and Florida, his decision won’t be influenced by anyone.

Not Chandler Cox, his teammate and Auburn early enrollee.

“That’s my best friend right there,” Ivey said. “I can’t even express how much I love him, you know. I’d do anything for him. But, it’s a business decision. Hopefully, I want to go play in the NFL one day and I want to make a choice that’s going to benefit me and what’s going to get me there. When it comes down to picking a college, just because he’s at Auburn, I can’t let that affect me.”

Not Will Muschamp, who is now the defensive coordinator at Auburn and spoke to Ivey before Saturday’s game.

“I like Muschamp as a head coach, but you can’t go to school off of coaches and you can’t let that affect your decision. The coaches come and go. It’s a business at the end of the day. You get paid to win, you don’t get paid to lose. You never know what might happen. You might have a down year one year and they fire the whole staff, so I’m not going to a school off a coach.”

That includes UF coach Jim McElwain, who visited Ivey last Monday with offensive line coach Mike Summers.

“It was pretty good,” Ivey said of the visit. “I like the confidence he had and what he had to bring. He was just being himself. He wasn’t trying to be like the extraordinary, just trying to go out of his way to try and recruit me. He wants me there because of who he is. He doesn’t want to sell fake recruiting to me, so that’s definitely what I got from him. He’s just being him.”

For Ivey, a 6-foot-6, 270-pound U.S. Army All-American who might announce at the game next month, his decision will come down to where he fits in, feels comfortable and has an opportunity to take his game to the next level.

“Whenever I get that feeling,” Ivey said. “I’ve been getting certain feelings lately like I’ve never had been before about colleges.

“Being comfortable, definitely being comfortable (matters most). Where I feel I could be at for the next four years, next three years. I just want to be comfortable in what I have to do and where I want to be at. … You can’t really find negatives about a school, it’s about what fits you and what’s best for you.”

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  1. @MTGATOR You said it. Apopka is one of the most disciplined teams in the state. They didn’t have the talent advantage that had in the past. They just stuck to their game plan and gutted out a championship.

    Congrats to the Darters!

  2. Hoping he becomes a true blue Gator. He’s the kind if young man others will follow, that you build a line around. He will be a credit to either school. The most important recruit for the Gators right now, I would guess.

  3. It’s either Auburn or UF. You’d think it’d be UF since he has always has been a Gator fan, but I wouldn’t count on anything for UF right now. Except for the Georgia game this year, not much has gone UF’s way lately.

  4. I don’t like our chances… You can say you won’t make a decision based on a friend or a coach all you want, but whether you mean it to or not it WILL have an affect on your decision making. Having Muschamp, the guy who built relationships with all the big recruits we want, and his best friend both go to Auburn? That’s not good. But I do have a really good feeling about Jefferson at least. He’s a Gator. And I’ve got a pretty good feeling about Cowart. Wouldn’t be willing to bet on Cowart being a Gator yet, but I think he chooses the Gators. After all we’ve been through 2 out of the big 3 ain’t bad. Go Gators!

  5. We’ll now find out if UF gets anyone before the dead period, which starts today and lasts for a month. Only recruits can initiate contacts during that time and early enrollees and guys that announce at all-star games will have to have bought in to what McElwain’s selling based on what he was able to do this past week. It’s be fantastic if someone announces today to stem the negative momentum of the class.
    Also, there is a lot more than three top recruits in Florida. Guys like Derwin James, George Campbell, Calvin Ridley, Deon Cain, etc. Many of them were considered locks for UF, particularly the ones from the Tamp area. So saying UF could go two out of three is ignoring the number of guys that are probably not coming to UF. Tyler Jordan is currently the most prominent guy from the state of Florida, that’s not saying much.

  6. Remember what a “class act” Muschamp was on his way out the door? He took his 2 million a year buyout, immediately went after Trob who had been out recruiting with McElwain the week before, and contacted everybody he had relationships with to recruit them to Auburn.

    He’s not a class act, he’s not a Gator, and he never will be either. It’s not his fault, it is what it is, but I still can’t fathom Foley leaving him in place to poison the well for so long. If anybody believes he didn’t turn the team against the Gator Nation (“us against them”), tell guys to go pro, and start laying the ground work for his exit strategy, I have some lovely beachfront property in downtown Gainesville for you.

    That said, I think McElwain can and will outflank him, it sounds like Ivey sees through Muschamp’s line of crap, I hope Trob does too.

  7. I think Summers being retained will be a strong positive for Ivey, since becoming a pro is so important to him. No one better to help him prepare for that……and certainly not Muschamp. Don’t recall Muschamp being hired as the Auburn OL coach.

  8. Any 18 year old not afraid to say that he’s praying about his decision after the way Tebow was crucified for his stance as a Christian, speaks volumes about his high character and quality to go along with his obvious talents. REALLY hoping you decide to be a GATOR Martez, But I know that you will be successful no matter where you wind up! You can’t keep a good thing down for too long and There’s nothing greater than a Gator!

  9. I think it’s nonsense to say that anyone will give you a better chance for the NFL. Summers? Auburn can counter that Greg Robinson was the second pick in the draft last year. It’s nonsense that going to this or that school will increase your chances to play in the NFL. It doesn’t matter what school you go to, if you are good enough the NFL will find you. It’s just another load of crap that coaches lay on impressionable young kids that their chances of making it to the NFL are dependent on what school they go to. The highest rated quarterback in the draft recently went to Central Florida. It doesn’t matter what school Ivey chooses, if he’s good enough, the NFL will find him. We also should not get caught up in projecting someone like Ivey to be great. I remember UF taking the nation’s highest rated tackle, a can’t miss guy. His name is D.J. Humphries. He hasn’t even sniffed being an All-SEC player, so be careful to not get excited over some hot shot recruit. He’s reportedly thinking about leaving early, which gives you some idea of the inflated opinions a lot of these players have of themselves.

  10. Every year we seem to lose the best o-lineman to other states, that on of our biggest weakness, our o-line. If Ivey changes that trend we will get back to where we want to be and quicker, his recruitment could really be a big part of changing this program. GO GATORS!!!!

  11. aux2, i agree with you about DJ, his freshman year was probably his best in my eyes. Maybe we expected too much out of him after his freshman year. He played above his head that year, I remember him shutting down Clowney but not that much since, he needs to stay put and build his brand a little more, if not I don’t see him going too high(just my opinion) DJ follow what the pro evaluation tells you,I’m just a fan. GO GATORS!!!!

  12. I agree with both of you, Aux and Creek Gator. You can’t ever be sure about how a recruit will turn out. At the same time Martez Ivey appears to have everything desirable for a guy who can be a dominating tackle, and we need a whole lot of help. As for Humphries, he’s had two position coaches and two coordinators and offenses for a head coach who never developed a cogent offensive philosophy. He badly needs another year. Tyler Moore needs another year much more. You guys offer lots of thoughtful insight. Keep it up. The dialogue is good.

  13. I like Ivey. Seems like a smart kid.

    That said, it’s amazing that UF is still paying Muschamp $6 million dollars to steal our prized recruits from us.

    Yeah, consider me to always have been dis-enchanted with Muschamp and don’t think he’s exactly the “up-standing” guy many seem to think he is.

  14. You can’t honestly believe where you go to school has no affect on your pro potential!!! Those 3 to 6 years are where you develop a lot of the skills you use in the NFL! Getting a good coach to teach you those fundamentals and secrets of the trade is crucial! The better your coach, the higher your chances. And you can’t tell me TV time doesn’t help your case either! Now in this day and age of TV deals the gap between a Florida and an Eastern Michigan isn’t what it used to be, but there is still a gap. Not to mention the players you’ll be playing against! You know what the most effective way to get better is? Play against guys that are better than you! Your college affects the level of competition you play. Yes college has a big role on your pro chances! Now as I said the gaps aren’t as wide as they used to be and no of course nothing is ever guaranteed. Despite the odds, if you’re good enough and you go to San Juan’s College for Under water basket weaving, you can still make it in the NFL, and just because you go to UF, Alabama, oregon, etc does not guarantee you a spot in the NFL. But it’s just nonsense to say college has no affect on your chances. It has a HUGE affect!

  15. Unless we meet Auburn in Atlanta sometime we ‘re going to have some fun watching Malzahn’s teams disrupt Alabama’s title runs and cut into the Tide ‘a domination of those schools’ in-state recruiting. There are so many top-notch prospects in Florida and other states who will want to choose UF that with the right ball coach in place our team can similarly dominate the SEC East. Not worried about our former, now deposed coach helping Auburn. He might help the Tigers in the short term recruit against us but over the next 13-14 months we ‘ll be loading up.

  16. Great insight from Gatormac & aux2. On another note-did anyone see Champ’s introductory presser w/ Auburn? Seems he took a couple of under the radar shots at Uf and their facilities. He cited that at Auburn the facilities were top notch and some of the best he’s seen. He then went on to say that at Auburn that they have the ‘resources’ in place that are necessary to win a championship. Wait, WHAT?!? So it seems like he was saying that the resources were NOT in place for him to win at Florida?!? I thought that was a croc (no pun intended) to backhand UF like that. He was given every opportunity to succeed & sounds bitter that he was fired. Now he’s contacting recruits & coaches to stick it to Foley. Let’s hope that the guys can stick together & hopefully meet the Tigers in Atlanta. GO GATORS!!!

  17. We’ve landed a defensive coordinator and a first verbal, too. Sure seems that TRob ‘s likely to stay with the Gators. Older facilities have “character” when a team is winning. It’s gonna be awfully good not too far into the future.

  18. I can’t believe there are some Gator fans that think we can still have a top 10 class……are you people on PCP? We have the 8th ranked class right now….top 50 is going to be a miracle. Just forget it you dolts.