Top 2014 recruit influenced by Beal


Star 6-foot-6 2014 swingman Devin Booker announced his final five choices on Monday.

Florida is on the list, with Kentucky, Michigan, Michigan State and Missouri. has rated Booker as the 16th-best prospect in the Class of 2014. The son of former Missouri point guard Melvin Booker, Devin Booker averaged 29.7 ppg at Moss Point, Miss. High last season.

Booker told that the reason he picked Florida in his final five was because of how UF coach Billy Donovan utilized former Gator swingman Bradley Beal in his offense. Beal helped lead Florida to an Elite Eight in the 2011-12 season before being picked third overall by the Washington Wizards in the 2012 NBA Draft.

“I like what they did with Bradley Beal,” Booker told GulfLive’s Creg Stephenson. “We’re kind of similar-type players. I saw him in their system, and I compare myself to his type of game. He lived out his dream … and I could go with coach Donovan and do that.”

Booker said he hopes to make a final decision before the NCAA early signing period starts on Nov. 13. He intends to make all his visits in the fall, but has yet to set up an official visit with UF.

“I just let things play out,” Booker said. “By doing that, you can tell who really wants you there. I picked the ones that were really interested in me and showed the most love, and that was my top 5.”

— In more recruiting news, 2014 big man Trey Lyles has Florida in his final four choices (with Louisville, Kentucky and Butler). The 6-foot-10, 225-pound Canadian is planning a visit to Florida in the fall. Lyles is a versatile player who has the size to play with his back to the basket, but is skilled enough to play multiple positions.

“As of right now the first visit will be to Louisville,” Lyles’ father, Tom, told “It’s actually going to take place at the end of this month for an official visit down there. And then after it hasn’t been confirmed … but we are trying to get down to Florida pretty soon. Nothing confirmed just in conversation.”