GATORS LIVE BLOG: National Signing Day


4:09 p.m.: The Gators received a late commitment during coach Jim McElwain’s press conference in JUCO cornerback Joseph Putu.

He was expected to sign with Arkansas today, but after a late offer from Florida he decided to sign with UF.

Just prior to Putu’s commitment, the Gators received notice from safety Antonio Nelson that he would be signing with UF.

But it’s unclear if Florida will accept his signed letter of intent after it appeared they had moved on from Nelson.


12:55 p.m.: Florida had been hoping to close strong by signing two recruits who remained undecided heading into National Signing Day.

But they came up empty-handed, as cornerback Kristian Fulton and offensive lineman John Simpson announced they’ll be signing with LSU and Clemson, respectively.

Fulton apparently had an extremely tough decision, and I’ve heard from several people he may take some time to send LSU his letter of intent. We won’t know until LSU announces it, however.

Simpson announced he’ll sign with Clemson at a ceremony at Ft. Dorchester (S.C.).



11:33 a.m.: The Gators have received a letter of intent from Park Crossing (Ala.) safety Jeawon Taylor.

At this point, the Gators are just waiting on a signed NLI from Quincy Lenton, and possibly commitments from Kristian Fulton and John Simpson. They’re expected to announce later today.

11:12 a.m.: Florida has received a signed letter of intent from Tyrie Cleveland. Huge pick-up for the Gators — he brings the wide receiver class from “great” to “exceptional” in my opinion.

10:44 a.m.: The announcements keep rolling in, and this time it’s Park Crossing (Ala.) safety Jeawon Taylor. He’s the No. 18 overall player out of Alabama by ESPN.


10:33 a.m.: Arguably Florida’s most highly coveted prospect, five-star defensive end Antonneous Clayton, sent the Gators his signed letter of intent a few minutes ago.

A Dooly County (Ga.) product, Clayton’s stock has risen significantly throughout his recruitment. McElwain and defensive line coach Chris Rumph should be ecstatic.

9:56 a.m.: While Florida’s class suffered a hit in losing four-star defensive tackle Shavar Manuel, the Gators gained a big-time four-star linebacker in Miami Norland product Vosean Joseph.

There was speculation he could flip to Alabama at the last minute, but he’ll be staying in-state. I’m sure a chance to play under linebackers coach Randy Shannon, a Miami legend, played a part in his decision.

Joseph announced the news himself minutes later.


9:51 a.m.: Coach Jim McElwain has announced the addition of Raines WR Rick Wells.


9:46 a.m.: Florida received arguably its first bit of bad news today. Four-star defensive tackle Shavar Manuel announced he is decommitting from the Gators, leaving in-state rival FSU as his likely destination. He’ll announce later today where he’ll sign from his home in Bradenton.

9:40 a.m.: Tyrie Cleveland, the No. 2 wide receiver in the 2016 class by 247Sports, has flipped from Houston and will sign with the Gators. Cleveland is one of the most highly coveted wide receiver prospects Florida has signed in the past decade. Huge get for Florida.

9:38 a.m.: The Gators received a letter of intent from Southwest Miami cornerback Christopher ‘CJ’ McWilliams. The three-star prospect is the No. 192 overall prospect from the state of Florida.

9:30 a.m.: Florida just received a signed letter of intent from three-star linebacker Jeremiah Moon. He’s the No. 13 overall prospect out of Alabama by Rivals. I’ll update this post when McElwain or Moon confirms his signing.

9:14 a.m.: Cleveland has arrived. He’ll be announcing shortly.

9:08 a.m.: A reporter for TexanLive said Tyrie Cleveland is not at his signing yet as he “remains undecided.” Stay tuned.

8:55 a.m.: Florida is in heavy pursuit of four-star wide receiver Tyrie Cleveland, a Houston commit. But the Gators have a solid shot of flipping him this morning. Watch live as he announces where he will sign.

8:37 a.m.: Florida wide receiver commit Rick Wells has announced his intention to sign with the Gators in a ceremony at Raines High. He’s ranked the No. 59 wide receiver and No. 41 prospect out of Florida by Rivals. The Gators will soon find out if they’ll sign Wells’ friend, four-star wide receiver Tyrie Cleveland.

8:22 a.m.: The faxes keep coming in. Florida has received a signed letter of intent from three-star Cocoa OL Jawaan Taylor. He’s ranked the No. 46 offensive lineman and No. 110 overall prospect out of Florida by ESPN.

8:19 a.m.: Florida added the third and final running back in the 2016 class just 15 minutes later in LaMical Perine out of Theodore (Ala.). Spurning an offer from in-state powerhouse Alabama, Perine wasted little time this morning in committing to coach Jim McElwain and the Gators. I’ll update this post with confirmation from Perine or McElwain.

8:04 a.m.: The Gators have received their second NLI from three-star defensive end Jachai Polite. The Daytona Beach product is ranked the No. 86 prospect out of Florida by Rivals.


8:00 a.m.: Good morning, everyone. The day is finally here – National Signing Day, the first day for 2016 recruits to sign letters of intent. Three-star Mount Dora center Brett Heggie kicked things off bright and early at 7:06 a.m., being the first Gator to fax his NLI to Florida.

He later thanked Gator fans across the country for showing him support.