Andreu’s Analysis: Tumbling recruiting class

(Matt Stamey/File)

Florida no longer has a top-10 football recruiting class for 2019.

Sure, if you go on the Internet and check out the class rankings, the Gators are still sitting inside the top 10. They’re at No. 8 on Rivals and No. 9 on 247.

The reality, of course, is this is no longer a top-10 class because three of its highest-ranked prospects — four or five-star cornerback Chris Steele, four-star linebacker Diwun Black and four or three-star quarterback Jalon Jones — are no longer part of it.

With those three off the list, the Gators would tumble outside of the top 10 if the classes were re-ranked by the recruiting services, which they have not.

The Gators now have a class of 22 that features 14 four stars and eight three stars according to 247 and 11 four stars and 11 three star on Rivals.

If the classes were re-ranked, the Gators likely would be sitting in the No. 15 or 16 spot in both services, just behind Washington, which is currently at No. 16 in both.

UF’s average star ranking falls off considerably on Rivals. On signing day, the Gators averaged 3.64 stars per signee. Now, that average is at just 3.25.

Even with the loss of Steele, Black and Jones, this is still a pretty solid class. But it’s no longer a top-10 class. Not even close.
If there is any further attrition — and that’s certainly a possibility — this class could eventually end up out of the top 20.

The pressure is now on Dan Mullen and his staff to get the Gators back in the top 10 with the 2020 class.


  1. The pressure is now on Dan Mullen and his staff to get the Gators back in the top 10 with the 2020 class.
    Did you think of that yourself?

    Jalon Jones was never going to get any meaningful snaps at QB.

    Steele is a big loss but CDM recruited 4 players at his position this year.

    Black was not going to play this year. We will get him back in two years with an SEC body and more experience than if he had stayed.

    Quit with the drama.

    • “Jalon Jones was never going to get any meaningful snaps at QB.

      Steele is a big loss but CDM recruited 4 players at his position this year.

      Black was not going to play this year. We will get him back in two years with an SEC body and more experience than if he had stayed.”

      No doubt. After another solid season, which will be year 2 after a 4-8 season…lets see where we stand.

    • Where is the DRAMA? I thought this was 18years old stuff that happens always and continuously. Steele will find a coach who will “grow him up” and JJ will also find a coach that will “grow him up”. Steele probably found out that its ‘TO HARD” to play against these SEC kids so he went back to the left coast. I am glad that he is gone.


      • One thing about Steele — it proves Dan Mullen is a lot better at recruiting than he’s being given credit for. Steele was recruited as a 4-star, and now he’s being reported by the media across the board as a 5-star……and he hasn’t even played a game yet!

        Either he got that good overnight by mere exposure to Dan Mullen — osmosis if you will — or it sounds worse for Florida that way. THAT’S where the DRAMA is, Arch!

      • Arch, I agree with up to your last two sentences. As I understand it, Steele was second on the depth chart at DBU at a time when he should still be in high school. Doesn’t sound like it was too hard.

  2. Well seeing Steele announce he’s going to Oregon will help stop some of the “he’s just homesick” rumors. Losing these 3 players wont be anything more than a bump in the road IF Miullen can replace them with players that are at least that talented in the next recruiting class. I’m just hoping that Mullen can learn to slow down the talk until we’ve at least had a trip to Atlanta again. If not UF will continue to be a national punching bag when these things pop up.

    • Why would that stop the rumors? Oregon is much closer to home than Florida. I think the fact that he practically just got off the plane and is already committed to Oregon is further proof of this being about more than what was being portrayed.

      • Joe, its roughly 850 miles from his parents home to the University of Oregon. If a kid was going “home” I would have thought he would go to USC that was right down the road. I guess any place west of the Mississippi river could be considered getting home?

        • Come on Sparky, it’s a 1h 50 min flight from his hometown to Eugene Oregon. Whereas it’s about a 5 hour flight and far more expensive to fly to Florida. His parents can fly out in the morning, watch a game and then fly back the same night now. Let’s not act like it’s even remotely the same. It was a very quick decision to commit to them none the less, and I highly doubt it was something that wasn’t thought about for a while now.

          • Good luck trying to get into Albert’s mind, Joe — that would be like trying to capture the tornado of words inside Jaw’s brain! Let me try though: I think he means Oregon is like a parallel universe, if Portland is any clue. Or else he thought the article said Ogeron, in which case nobody knows what time zone that crazy cajun is in.

            You can thank me later!

        • Yeah it’s a matter of being close enough to home to see your family way more than once or twice a year and now you’ll be playing with or against a bunch of guys you grew up playing with. Being homesick doesn’t mean you literally have to be back home. There’s a different comfort level with being completely across the country.

  3. There is nothing to panic about. What we got last year with the talent we had and to a large part still have we will be fine. Maybe we will suffer a bit in depth but we will be good to hook. Some of these guys would not see meaningful time JJ, Steele maybe, Black would have had to been a beast to beat out the depth. I think this team will be very good with the coaching staff we have. Maybe some of the student management staff needs addressing but that is a separate issue.

    • If it bleeds it leads, Phil….and right now, you’ve got to have Florida bleeding or else there is no story to write. Sure, it’s a major hit to our pride and a yet-to-be-determined hit to our progress or results on the football field, where actual playing the game counts. But throughout this “ordeal” we only drop to #15 for 2019 recruiting? Well butter my buns and call me a biscuit! I was certain we fell to around #50 or 60 by the sound of it!

      • My biggest issue with the article is it is one of those where you go “ah duh”. What’s next : ” Water is wet.” ? The Sun has publicized the defections . No need to keep bringing it up either. It isn’t the only place these stories have been written. Finally , we aren’t the only team in America where this has happened but you wouldn’t know that from the article and if we are going to re-do rankings , defections from others affect ours as well as theirs .I’m not worried considering we just had a 2 star drafted in the second round. He would have been drafted in the first but Josh Allen was too much to pass up for the Jags . They would have taken Taylor. Our two 5 stars didn’t get drafted.

        • So you guys are all sore that the journalist are writing about the only football news this week! Thats what journalist do, thats the way the news goes, what rock have you been living under? A story continues till another headline pushes it out! The fact that you all are whining betrays the fact that the story gets to you! You cant be the ostrich as long as they keep bringing it up!

          • Who the hell is whining? We ostriches don’t mind the story — in fact, we welcome the news about the Gators not just during the off-season. What bugs us is the over-response, the leap in illogic, and the constant yet to be determined assumptions without a single snap of the damn football being taken so far with or without these guys. If that makes us “betray” anything, it’s our nausea over the incessant catastrophic thinking going on during and after these articles. Sorry we don’t meet the standards you set, Daz.

  4. Lets just call this article incomplete to be kind. black may yet figure out a way to get on campus via the junior college route. weve had some greats go that way, a little different deal, but nat moore was a favorite, another was reggie nelson. no one in the entire class has yet to take a snap, dont you rate these guys about how they end up and what they do over the entire time? also, 2 slots are now open, more than likely, maybe that brings in some help that will be just as productive. nature itself likes redundancy, things like two kidneys, two eyes, two ears, weve seen people do well with just one if something happens, and lets face it there are only 30 regular positions on a team anyway, so these are the backup backups. no doubt it will hurt us sometime, but in 3 years we can argue if robbie is right that the program is headed back to the bottom level mac and champ took us to.
    the real issue is that the gators sell newspapers. everyone loves to talk about them. so if there is bad news, its a bigger story here than it is in some place like ucf, or kansas state, or arizona… one gets through the offseason cleanly, and if they do it is a waste of luck you need for the games.

  5. University of Florida Ostriches.

    Jalon Jones appears to be Cam Newton part 2. Never going to play qb. Not a qb. No big loss. LOL

    It’s going to stink if we lose 10 players to transfer this year. Bring in 1 lose 10. That’s not a good ratio unless your an Ostrich.

  6. This is typical Robbie writing a lazy article. It is true that the Gators have lost signees in the class, but Robbie didn’t bother to go through the rest of the teams and adjust their rankings based on those who qualified, transfers, etc. That would give you a true view of where the Gators fall in regards to recruiting. However, that would require some research, effort and attention to detail, which is definitely not in his wheel house.

    Also, it is always the same writing style. One sentence paragraphs that are just lazy thoughts spewed onto the paper. Basically it’s the same narrative…”There is a big problem with recruiting, unless their isn’t. It will impact the season, unless it doesn’t. This class will have more attrition, unless it stays the same. Can Mullen pull it off?…we’ll see!” Riveting!

    Therefore, I am taking this “article” with a giant grain of salt. It’s about as informative as when he appears on Dooley’s podcasts agreeing with everything Dooley says…unless he doesn’t.

  7. Wow, you sure can tell it’s the summer off-season. Every bit of football news is a world-trembling drama.

    Sports media people need to get a life.

    1) Chris Steele was going to leave after the semester anyway, Jalon Jones or not. The fact that he was told he’d get a new roommate and then waited almost 4 months and then bolted and entered the transfer portal AFTER Jones was enough to figure out he never had any intention to stay. Homesick, and mom was calling him home. he just used the Jones situation to get a hardship waiver so he wouldn’t have to sit a year.

    2) So some 2021 recruits from two years out de-committed? Let’s chill one that one, because now the sports media folks are acting like players never de-commit? Happens all the time. Anthony Richardson de-committed and re-committed weeks later. Just chill…

    3) And Arjei Henderson and Diwun Black didn’t qualify? Henderson was going to be a RS anyway and Black would have probably only seen special teams action most of his first year, and will be back next year after a trip to JUCO.

    So overall, we lost one player who transferred because he was homesick. Lets have some perspective here…