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Partha
Columbia Fan
Member since Jan 2022
3088 posts

"Recruiting Season" 2023 Class

Now that we have a staff that actually understands the importance of recruiting, it might be fun to follow in the off-season again.

I honestly don't think I really followed recruiting at all (not even paid attention to national signing day) since Mac had Corral, Chase, and Pitts committed to Florida.

Commit List
1) Aaron Gates, Sharpsburg (GA) Trinity Christian School four-star athlete ,

2) Knijeah Harris, Bradenton (Fla.) IMG Academy four-star interior offensive lineman

3) Creed Whittemore. Gainesville (Fla.) Buchholz four-star wide receiver ,

4) Tyree Patterson, Eustis (Fla.) three-star wide receiver .

5) Bryce Lovett, OL
This post was edited on 5/16 at 9:29 pm


Partha
Columbia Fan
Member since Jan 2022
3088 posts



4 Star WR from Chipley, FL

His brother Xavian is currently on UGA, and I think we recently hired their relative Lamar as part of the support staff.


finchmeister08
Florida Fan
Member since Mar 2011
30382 posts

lol his 247 profile picture is him sucking on a pacifier


Partha
Columbia Fan
Member since Jan 2022
3088 posts

As long as he doesn't "suck" on the field, I'm cool with it.


Partha
Columbia Fan
Member since Jan 2022
3088 posts

Expected March 2022 Visitors List





Partha
Columbia Fan
Member since Jan 2022
3088 posts

I imagine this hire will be good for recruiting.



Partha
Columbia Fan
Member since Jan 2022
3088 posts

Bud Davis on Twitter
quote:

How is Billy Napier prioritizing in-state recruiting?
??Dots are UF recruits since 2005
??Coach territories per @Swamp_247
??Big task for Spencer w/ Tampa>Ft. Myers
??Colbert, Peterson, Stapleton, Peagler, & Raymond well balanced
??Bateman & Juluke have lighter in-state loads





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NWA_Gator
Florida Fan
Fayetteville, AR
Member since Sep 2021
146 posts

Miami and FSU may never be worse than they both are right now.

If there was ever a time to capitalize and keep the highly ranked guys in state, it’s now.


Partha
Columbia Fan
Member since Jan 2022
3088 posts

Notre Dame commit Keon Keeley was impressed by the new coaching staff at Florida
By Andrew Spivey
March 5, 2022
quote:

The Florida Gators hosted a few prospects committed to other schools on Saturday but one of the biggest ones was a Notre Dame commit.

Notre Dame outside linebacker commit Keon Keeley (6-5, 240, Tampa, FL. Berkeley Prep) liked the new coaching staff and feel around Gainesville on Saturday.

“It went really well, the new staff is coming in with a lot of energy,” Keeley said of his visit to Florida on Saturday. “They’re bringing a lot of great things to the University of Florida and a lot of things to be excited about.”


Keeley spent the most time around his position coach who had a message to him about how he would fit into the defense.

“Mostly Coach [Mike] Peterson and a little with Coach [Billy] Napier,” he said on the coaches he was around on Saturday. “Coach Peterson just went over how I fit in the defense, being the Jack on defense, playing the edge, roaming around, and rushing the passer.”

Outside linebackers coach Mike Peterson is a guy that has a long history in football and that’s something that Keeley noticed.

“It went really well, he told me how I could be used,” Keeley said on how the relationship with Peterson is going. “How I could help the defense and help them win. He’s a really great coach, a good guy, and a lot of energy. He’s bringing a lot to the University of Florida.”

Keeley was also impressed by what head coach Billy Napier brings to the table he thinks the future is bright under Napier.


“Great coach, he has a lot to bring to the University of Florida,” he said on his talks with Napier. “The fans have something to be excited about with him and so do the players. I think he’s a great coach and hire.”

The Tampa native has said in the past that he grew up rooting for the Gators and he says it’s always good to visit Gainesville.

“The first time I visited here [Florida] was June 1st, it was good to get back on campus and get the feel of it again,” he said of visiting Florida again. “It’s always great to get back on campus and feel the vibe with everything around it.”

Now that the coaching staff has been able to spend time around Keeley, the outside linebacker says he will talk things over with his circle and see where things stand.

“Great university, definitely on the rise,” Keeley said on his interest in Florida. “I just have to talk to my head coach about everything and revisit things with my family and my coach. Kind of rework around the recruiting process.”

INSIDERS TAKE: Keeley will be at Notre Dame on March 26th and then again for the spring game.



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Partha
Columbia Fan
Member since Jan 2022
3088 posts

quote:

Miami and FSU may never be worse than they both are right now.

If there was ever a time to capitalize and keep the highly ranked guys in state, it’s now.


Way too many Florida kids who say that they "grew up as Gator fans" ended up at Bama, Georgia, Clemson, and Ohio State these past few years.


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Partha
Columbia Fan
Member since Jan 2022
3088 posts

Gators new staff makes strong impression on Top247 athlete



quote:

Robert Stafford's last trip to Gainesville offered a dramatically different look at the University of Florida relative to its current situation.

The Melbourne (Fla.) Eau Gallie High School four-star athlete prospect attended one of the Gators’ games during the 2021 season when Dan Mullen served as the team’s head coach. Stafford, the No. 184 overall prospect and No. 16 athlete in the 2023 class on the independent 247Sports rankings, was fostering a connection with a Gator coaching staff that is no longer in place.

It’s why his visit to Florida on March 5 was so important to him: It was an opportunity to get to know the program’s new leadership. And in the immediate aftermath of his visit, Stafford said the Gator coaches left the right impression.


“I can tell I like the new staff,” Stafford told Swamp247 recruiting analyst Blake Alderman after his unofficial visit on Saturday. “They’re real with me and they really want me.”

A 5-foot-11, 171-pound athlete prospect who plays defensive back and wide receiver, Stafford’s trip to Gainesville on March 5 was jam-packed with first introductions. He said he had an opportunity to meet the majority of the Gators’ coaching staff, including head coach Billy Napier.


The opportunity to interact with the vast majority of Florida’s coaches offered a different experience for Stafford in comparison to his trips to other schools. It was an overwhelmingly positive aspect of his experience.

“Some of the visits I went to, with the coaches it was just a couple of them,” Stafford said. “With this one, it was the whole staff. I know they really want me. All of them were texting me like excited for me to come this morning. It was real good.”


Stafford also expressed excitement regarding his opportunity to interact with Napier, a conversation that left the 2023 prospect pleasantly surprised due to Napier's "genuine" nature.

“I can tell that he really wants me and I like that about Coach,” Stafford said. “He’s real.”

Stafford has said before that the Gators have done a good job to make him feel like a priority target, something that defensive analyst Jamar Chaney and tight ends coach William Peagler, who is Stafford’s regional recruiter, have been in charge of since joining the program.


While Saturday’s visit offered an opportunity to interact with Florida’s staff at large, Stafford still spoke highly of his primary points of contact with the university.

“[Peagler] and coach Chaney, both of them, they're always calling me and checking up on me so I can tell they really care about me,” Stafford said. “I love that about them.”

It wasn’t just the coaching staff that stood out to Stafford during his visit. The four-star prospect said Gainesville itself has its perks.


“I love the environment,” he said. “It’s sunny out here. I don’t really like the cold.”

Stafford has garnered plenty of national interest thus far in his recruitment with a reported 36 scholarship offers, including nine from SEC programs. Arkansas, Florida, Georgia and Oregon have stood out to Stafford thus far and he has plans to visit Florida State and Georgia this month.

The two-way player knows precisely what he hopes to see in his future school.

“I’m just looking for a family and for me to have a chance to play, that’s all,” Stafford said.

Stafford said the Gators have expressed their interest in his “speed and ball skills,” qualities that open the door for him to play on either side of the ball at the college level. On Saturday, it was made clear to him that he could fit in with the Gators regardless of his positioning.

“They just want me here as a [defensive back] and wide receiver,” Stafford said. “As a player, I can make an impact at Florida.”



Partha
Columbia Fan
Member since Jan 2022
3088 posts

What's the deal with these 2023 recruits and golden pacifiers?


Partha
Columbia Fan
Member since Jan 2022
3088 posts



People who are familiar with So Fla recruiting (Not talking about Uncle Luke! lol) are saying that this Larry Williams Jr. is a great pickup for building a presence in South Florida high schools.


Partha
Columbia Fan
Member since Jan 2022
3088 posts

Nice write up from a poster named "Miles1021" on 247

quote:

With all the recruiting movement in these past few months, it's killed me that I haven't found the time to share some of the things i've heard. Obviously, NSD was underwhelming and left a lot of the fanbase with uncertainty regarding some staff members' closing ability -- myself included. Despite that, I truly belive this staff has hit the ground running in the 2023 class. Like I said in Cole's extremely optimistic post, it's undeniable that we've started off extremely well with some our top targets, but selling an elite recruit (and their family) on devoting the next 3-4 years of their life to your porgram tends to take time, not 1-2 months. That's why it's important for the fanbase to realize that we've moved on to bigger fish - no more premature or reach takes - and major movement will arrive in the coming months.

In the past two weeks, I've been able to candidly speak with several coaches and players who have taken notice of what Billy & co. are doing. I will not be excessively hyperbolic - like a certain fanbase in Miami - and state that the nation is terrified of our coaching staff; but, all of the early returns are positive. This staff has done an extremely well job of prioritizing the correct areas, keeping schools and players warm, and building relationships with a recruit's entire camp, not just the recruit himself. Let me expand...

Billy realizes that it's going to be extremely difficult to pull top talent out of Alabama, Georgia, and Miami's backyards. That has not dissuaded him from recruiting those areas, but rather allocating more time and resources into realistic regions (Orlando, Tampa, Jacksonville). Objectively, this is something Dan and his staff utterly lacked, as they sunk significant amounts of time and resources into players that never gave Florida a look. The aim is to build an infrastructure so large that we can consistently pull talent out of these regions, but in the meanwhile, spend your time where it is reciprocated.

By prioritizing these areas, Billy has been able to communicate with schools -- who Dan neglected -- that consistently pump out top-tier talent. Also, he has sent out multiple offers to players that are uncomittable at the moment. I wouldn't consider these players bad or inadequate by any means, but a lot of people have been confused by several offers; let me try to explain. In the past, we've seen Dan miss on several top targets, then attempt to circle back on previous targets and establish a relationship when it's far too late. Billy knows that won't cut it here. He has remained in contact with significantly more prospects at a time than Dan did, giving us a larger board and more fall-back plans if needed.

The visits have been great. There's a reason every single recruit says they will be back (and more than once). Having charismatic people - as opposed to awkward - in the recruiting office has really helped. Players and recruits are able to build relationships with more than just the on-field staff and we have more staff members in contact with a family at once. The effort has been extremely promising.

The one worry I have of Billy (off-field) is the amount of trust I believe he puts in a player's word. Yes, he's worked under Saban at Alabama, but he hasn't been completely exposed to the sliminess and deceitfulness of the current recruiting game as a Head Coach. By all accounts, he's an honest man and expects the same back, but I hope he becomes wary of how little a recruit or their side's word means soon. I don't believe this is a major issue, but it ties in the two silent commits going elsewhere on NSD rumor.

Now onto some of the prospects. I believe there are three "can't miss" guys for us this cycle. Then, about five-to-six much-needed recruits. After that, a large pool of players that can move up or down depending on their senior year.

Can't Miss Prospects

Cormani McClain

Keon Keeley

Derrick LeBlanc

If you want to enter your name back among the elites, these are three guys you need to land. Obviously, it is no easy task to pull all three and won't be a colossal failure if you shoot 66%, but land all three and you're firmly entered back in the national recruiting landscape. McClain is a "generational" athletic talent out of Polk, has grown up loving the Gators, and was silently committed to Jules Montinar. You need to land this kid. Keeley and LeBlanc are two different situarions, but both equally as important to the class. I like Keeley more as a prospect, but I see no reason why we can't land both. Coach Chaos has been in constant contact with both and there's been undeniable reciprocated interest. The game is won in the trenches -- land the two best pass-rushers in Florida, and that gives you an extra win or two person season.

Much-Needed Prospects

Christopher Vizzina

Cedric Baxter Jr.

AJ Harris

Peyton Kirkland

John Walker

Tony Mitchell

Tyler Williams - Aidan Mizell - Eugene Wilson

Malik Bryant

I understand it is hard to gauage where we stand with Vizzina, if we even stand, but he is our best chance at a top QB talent in this bump class (which we need). The main competition comes from Ole Miss & Clemson -- use stability and playing time as your pitch. As exciting and favorable Lane Kiffin's offense is, he's never stayed at a place for more than four years, why would Oxford change that? Clemson just signed another golden boy in Cade Klubnik; unless you want to sit two years minimum, you come to Florida and compete to start early.

I believe Baxter is the best RB in the class and he has a lot of early interest in Florida. A dynamic, elite RB is a necessity in Billy Napier's offense and Baxter is just that.

AJ Harris and Tony Mitchell, like Cormani, are chess pieces you can put anywhere in the secondary. PToney loves to incorporate an abundance of DB's in his scheme at a time and you brought Corey Raymond here for a reason. Early PT, scheme, and being developed by the GOAT is as good of a pitch as you can get.

Again, the game is won in the trenches. Mauigoa and Okunola are easily 1-2 on our OL board, but far less realistic than Kirkland. In Kirkland, you get a true tackle with all of the potential in the world and a solid floor already. Need to capitalize on the visit high and strengthen the lead. On Walker, I got word that we held a strong lead early in the 2021 season -- vanishing due to poor play and recruiting. Spencer is recruiting him extremely hard (DT1) and selling the idea of him & LeBlanc continuing their domination at the college level. There is some early optimism here, but a lot more selling to do. I believe we're in a better position with Jordan Hall than FSU reporters do, but he maintains there's a long way to go in his recruitment.

The 3 WR's. Speed, speed, and speed. What we've lacked in the WR room (outside of Toney, who had unconventional speed) for so long. I have been tough on Colbert early, for good reason, but this haul could challenege our then-2021 WR class in terms of raw talent and upside. I continue to hear positive things on Wilson, but am watching Alabama. Mizell needs an offer. Williams needs to get on campus. No excuse not to add speed, length, and talent to the WR room with such a loaded in-state haul.

I put Malik Bryant here because of my uncertainty of where our LB board stands. Bryant, despite an OLB, seems to be the constant of what LB's are takes. I love Jordan Hall and Damon Wilson's tape, but need to see how talks progress. I don't think Bowles is a realistic option. Keeping my eyes on both Harris'.


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Partha
Columbia Fan
Member since Jan 2022
3088 posts

2023 Hawthorne, FL QB Tyler Jefferson


Per Twitter, is planning to visit UF on March 19th


Partha
Columbia Fan
Member since Jan 2022
3088 posts

Article from GC about 4 Star ATH Rober Stafford from Melbourne, FL:

Stafford likes the genuine approach from the Florida Gators’ staff
By Andrew Spivey - March 9, 2022

quote:

Last weekend several of the top in-state prospects visited Gainesville for an unofficial visit to meet the new coaching staff.

Athlete Robert Stafford (5-11, 171, Melbourne, FL. Eau Gallie) was on campus and head coach Billy Napier made a strong impression on him.

“It was a great visit,” Stafford said of his visit to Florida. “Coach Napier made me feel at home. He’s extremely genuine and I have a great relationship with Coach [Jamar] Chaney. It was an overall great trip.”


Defensive backs coach Corey Raymond and off-the-field staff member Jamar Chaney spent the most time around Stafford during the visit.

“Coach Chaney and Coach [Corey] Raymond,” he said on the coaches he spent the most time with. “It was great being around them, they seemed extremely grateful that I made it on campus, and they want me to become a Gator.”

Stafford plays both offense and defense in high school, but Raymond has explained that he wants the athlete on defense in college.

“He likes me at cornerback,” Stafford said on where Raymond wants him. “He likes my length and ball skills, just basically that I’m the total package. I can compete with anyone in man coverage.”

Head coach Billy Napier is known as a coach that relates well with players and Stafford instantly got that impression from the head man.


“He definitely wants me and has invested in me,” he said on his talks with Napier. “He loves my game and how I present myself, he was real, and I love that about him.”

After the visit, Stafford says the Gators are in the mix for him now because of a few things he noticed during the visit.

“I’m extremely interested,” Stafford said on his interest in Florida. “I love the coaches and family atmosphere there.”

Next up for Stafford will be two visits to rivals of the Gators rivals but he also hopes to return to Gainesville soon.

“I’m going to FSU this weekend and UGA next week,” he said on other visits planned. “I don’t know exactly when, but I will be back to Florida.”





Partha
Columbia Fan
Member since Jan 2022
3088 posts

Per Twitter, Gators make an offer to 2023 5 Star QB recruit Dante Moore from Detroit,MI.



Here is his hudl.


Partha
Columbia Fan
Member since Jan 2022
3088 posts

Another 5 Star QB offered.

Nicholaus Iamaleava of Downey, CA. 6'5", 195 lbs.



This post was edited on 3/10 at 6:04 pm


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Peter167
Member since Mar 2020
4254 posts

Got a lot of crystal ball action the last week or so. Hope one of them commits soon.


Partha
Columbia Fan
Member since Jan 2022
3088 posts

quote:


Got a lot of crystal ball action the last week or so. Hope one of them commits soon.


I've been on the road a bit the past few weeks and haven't been on top of recruiting/spring practice, but just saw on the news feed for SECRant that "Elite five-star defensive lineman Peter Woods announced his final four schools this weekend which were Alabama, Florida, Clemson, and Oklahoma."

Good to see that we're back in the mix for these 5 star players again.

Seems like Sean Spencer is hitting the trail hard. Will try to get some articles/info about what he's been doing, but Coach Chaos has been very impressive thus far.




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