Clayton ‘speechless’ after UF win, but names Gators his leader

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Antonneous Clayton is a 2016 Under Armour All-American. (Photo by Zach Abolverdi / The Gainesville Sun)

Florida’s comeback victory over Tennessee undoubtedly had a huge impact on recruits, perhaps none more than Antonneous Clayton.

The consensus four-star defensive end and Rivals100 member from Vienna (Ga.) Dooly County was one of several top prospects in attendance.

“I loved it,” Clayton said of his trip. “I mean, I’m speechless right now.”

But Clayton did have one thing to say — UF is now his No. 1 school.

“Florida is my top leader right now,” he said. “I can really come in and make a big impact. I’m close with the coaches and some of the players like Alex McCalister, Vernon (Hargreaves).

“I’ve been talking to them on Twitter, building a relationship with them and (seeing) what it takes to make it here. Them winning that game like that makes it go up even more.”

The crowd noise in The Swamp was hard on Clayton’s ears, but Florida’s defense and wide receivers were easy on his eyes.

“At first I thought I had to cover up my ears — like it’s too loud — and then I got adjusted to the situation,” Clayton said. “Four minutes left on the clock and guys like Brandon Powell and No. 81 stepped up. It’s real good they missed that field goal.

“I look at Florida as kind of a defensive school where I can kind of fit in and be an impact player. I just have a good vibe about them.”

The 6-foot-4, 218-pounder plans to officially visit UF the weekend of the Florida State. Auburn and Florida were once co-leaders for Clayton, but the Tigers have slowed their recruitment of him.

“I was feeling Auburn, but it’s just, I don’t know,” he said. “I’m not saying they’re losing love, but it seems like ever since Marlon Davidson committed there they just stopped hitting me up. There is just one guy hitting me up and that’s Scott Fountain. It was Will Muschamp a lot, but it’s not anymore.

“As far as I’m concerned, I’m more focused on Florida now.”