Preview of All-American games


Three of Florida’s eight verbal commitments will be in All-American games this weekend.

Center Tyler Jordan plays in Friday’s Under Armour All-America Game, wide receiver Derrick Dillon competes in Saturday’s U.S. Army All-American Bowl and offensive lineman Mike Horton participates in Sunday’s Semper Fidelis All-American Bowl.

The Under Armour and U.S. Army games will feature several UF targets, including one who is scheduled to make his decisions on national television.

Consensus five-star defensive end Byron Cowart, who’s been dominating at the Under Armour All-America practices this week, will have Florida, Florida State and Auburn fans glued to the tube during Friday’s game. He’ll visit all three schools next month before deciding on signing day.

The following day, four-star safety Tim Irvin announces at the U.S. Army All-American Bowl. With the uncertainty surrounding Florida secondary coach Travaris Robinson, Irvin’s primary recruiter, Texas likely lands the standout from Miami.

U.S. Army All-American offensive tackle Martez Ivey also planned to commit Saturday but will now wait until signing day.

Here are the players to watch from the three games:

Under Armour All-America Game
Jan. 2 at 4 p.m. ET, ESPN
Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla.

Team Armour
No. 6 Adonis Thomas, LB, Lawrenceville (Ga.) Central Gwinnett (Alabama commit)
No. 11 Jeff Holland, LB, Jacksonville Trinity Christian
No. 23 D’Anfernee McGriff, S, Tallahassee Leon (Auburn commit)
No. 71 Tyler Jordan, C, Jacksonville Bishop Kenny
No. 73 Kendrick Norton, OG/DT, Jacksonville Trinity Christian

Team Highlight 
No. 1 Roquan Smith, LB, Montezuma (Ga.) Macon County
No. 3 Deondre Francois, QB, Bradenton IMG Academy (Florida State commit)
No. 10 Ray-Ray McCloud III, RB, Tampa Sickles (Clemson commit)
No. 55 Christian Pellage, OT, Brooksville Nature Coast Tech (South Carolina commit)
No. 99 Byron Cowart, DE, Seffner Armwood

*Under Armour practice sessions will be aired by ESPNU on Tuesday from 8-11 p.m. ET and Wednesday from 8-11 p.m. ET. The Sun will provide coverage from Wednesday’s media luncheon.

U.S. Army All-American Bowl
Jan. 3 at 1 p.m. ET, NBC
Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas

No. 1 Jordan Scarlett, RB, Fort Lauderdale St. Thomas Aquinas (Miami commit)
No. 2 CeCe Jefferson, DE, Glen St. Mary Baker County (recovering from shoulder surgery)
No. 5 Deon Cain, WR, Tampa Bay Tech (Clemson commit)
No. 20 Tim Irvin, S, Miami Westminster Christian
No. 77 Martez Ivey, OT, Apopka

No. 84 Derrick Dillon, WR, Franklinton (La.) Pine (Florida commit)

*Miami Booker T. Washington tight end Devonaire Clarington, who announces his decision at the game, is no longer being recruited by Florida with the commitment of Daniel Imatorbhebhe.

Semper Fidelis All-American Bowl
Jan. 4 at 9 p.m. ET, Fox Sports 1
Santa Ana Stadium in Santa Ana, Calif.

Mike Horton, OL, Atlanta (Ga.) Lakeside (Florida commit)
Dwayne Lawson, QB, Tampa Hillsborough


  1. Zach, you mention that coach Mac could have his first big-time commitment in Ivey, if Cowart doesn’t choose UF on Friday. Is Byron ready to decide, I remember reading in one of your articles that he could push back to NSD? Didn’t know with muschamp going to auburn and new coach at Florida if he’d take the extra time to meet more with coach Mac. Thanks for the constant info, excited for the future of the program.

  2. I think the scheduling of UF’s game will hurt with some of the recruits. With it being roughly the same time as the Army bowl that will mean that those guys won’t get to see the game. I sincerely hope that the UA guys can get a better handle on the future of the program once they see the game. The Chucky doll/fsu shorts thing with Cowart kind of worries me but in the end I feel as though he picks UF. I think he will wait until signing day to announce b/c it seems that he wants to make an informed decision. GO GATORS!!

  3. Will muschump contactng recruits is a violation…I thought recruits could call but not the coach…straight violation….he’s a damb cheater…roquan smith said muschump called him twice Monday in the interview…..

  4. WES, there are rumors Ivey has already told Coach Mac he’s going to announce he’s going to UF at the all-star game, so lets hope that’s a solid rumor. 😉

    As for Cowart, if we can get a big commit like 5* Ivey in the fold, it could really get the ball rolling for this class. Cowart may not be far behind if Ivey puts on the Gator cap this weekend.

  5. I’m with ya on that one kerrdog ! without that type of mindset, it poisons the locker room with guys who want to bitch & moan about everything. Lets bring in guys who are proud to wear that storied uniform ! Who will fight thru adversity & create the atmosphere we once had before musswilly showed up.

  6. Thanks Zach for all your hard work and have a Happy New Year!!!! With the recent comments from CeCe that he wont take an official visit to UF and that Ole Miss is his leader, should we have a backup plan at d-end in case he doesn’t commit?

  7. We want kids who we can win with. Hopefully they are good students and better people, but all that “die – hard, thru and thru” talk is just hyperbole. What happened to the last coach we had that was a die hard gator?

    Most S. Fla kids grow up Canes and decide later on that IF is where they want to be, but to insinuate that if u wasn’t born with a Spurrier Jersey, then we don’t want u is hogwash.

  8. I am hoping we finish strong here. Coaches have a uphill battle trying to create and mend relationships with players and HS coaches. I am not sure if Muschamp was good at this piece of recruiting. Thus, leaving a bad legacy for Florida football. We lost a lot of recruiting battles in the last few years. Cook and Lane are good examples. Something happened there. I know kids are fickle. I have 2 that went thru the baseball recruiting process. But the one characteristic they said was a must for them was honesty and integrity of the coaching staff. It’s a gut feeling we all had as a family in this process.

    So we all need to be patient and look at a 2 year cycle for recruiting instead of this year.

  9. Guess I am a little confused. Is Cowart picking his school Friday and Zach is predicting he does not choose the Gators, or is Zach saying that all these school will be interested watching him play and he is not choosing this week? I have reread this a few times and cannot figure it out. Does anyone know? Maybe I am just hoping he is not choosing this Friday and that is why Ivey may be the first to choose Florida.

  10. Oh my! To be able to sign that 3-headed monster (Ivey, Cowart, Jefferson). Their commitments will help to ensure a brighter future and help stem the tide (yes, pun intended) to bring Gator football back to where it belongs now that we have a REAL HBC!

  11. It sounds like no one is committing to UF any time soon. It sounds like UF is striking out on everyone, at least right now, because it seems not one of the guys that are supposedly coming to UF will actually come out and say so. The all-star games are filled with FSU and Alabama commits, maybe guys are too embarrassed to say they are going to UF right now. It sounds like, if any good news is coming for UF, we will have to wait until signing day.

  12. MTGATOR-don’t know where you’ve heard that but D4 is solidly to UF. I’ve never heard anything otherwise. I follow him on twitter & he’s all Gator from his posts. He also follows former commits George Brown & Sheiron Jones. Jones appears like he might switch back & now Brown could be looking to get back in as well but not real sure. Tennessee seems to be on him (Jones) hard to come there. Ivey decided not to announce this week & Cowart appears to seem to want to wait till signing day as well. GO GATORS!!

  13. I’m thinking that some of these elite recruits are waiting to see who goes, who stays and who stays with our staff. Hiring Randy Shannon is a game-changing move for south Florida recruiting and coaching acumen. I’m hoping TRob sticks around. However, at best he would appear undecided since there’s been no word on his status. So far ALL of Mac’s staff additions are of significant assistants. Really excited to see the shape of this staff in another week and then watch how it impacts recruiting.

  14. I don’t think Shannon’s hire will improve UF’s recruiting in South Florida. Many people will view him as traitor going to UF after being the head coach at Miami. Assistants make those kind of moves all the time, but it’s rare, can’t think of one, for an alum and former head coach of a team going to a bitter rival. I think Shannon will be a pariah in South Florida and McElwain hiring him is a mistake if he thinks he’s g to make inroads in South Florida with a guy who has burned all his bridges by coming to UF and will be viewed as a Benedict Arnold by a lot of folksthat matter in South Florida. I hope he’s a great linebackers coach because I think it’s a mistake to think he’s going to be a great recruiter, at least in South Florida. It might be a better idea to give him a different area where he won’t be so reviled.

  15. Not true nutcase, ‘;~) HBC Muschamp goes to hated rival All-barn as DC. I’ve heard no one hating on Will for that ‘business’ decision, as just a recent example. I certainly don’t see Will as any kind of a tratior. Shanny as a S.FL recruiter is more about knowing people for a foot in the door. It’s still being a Gator and in the Gator Nation Network that’s the read draw to Gainesville. Shanny would be fine recruiting in S.FL imoho.

  16. Great point Muddler… Mr. Pessimist did say former coach AND alum… Never realized the old ball coach’s image was so tarnished in Florida that he hasn’t been able to get a recruit from the state in his 10 years at SCar. I recommend you check his roster before you talking garbage.