One of Florida’s biggest recruiting targets was on hand Saturday for the Gators’ 33-29 loss to LSU.
Belle Glade Glades Central wide receiver Kelvin Benjamin made the trip to Gainesville, despite being linked earlier in the week to possibly staying close to home for the Miami-Florida State game in Coral Gables.
Benjamin, who stands 6-foot-6 and 210 pounds, got tons of attention from wide receivers coach Zach Azzanni, who has been in charge of his recruitment for Florida.
Benjamin said he had good time at the game, but wasn’t happy to see LSU come away with the victory.
“It was good,” he said. “Only bad thing was that they lost.”
While in town, Benjamin caught up with old Glades Central star receiver Deonte Thompson.
With his size Benjamin could also be considered as a tight end, but Florida is recruiting him strictly as a wide receiver. That’s something Benjamin likes, and after watching how Florida lacked many big plays from the receiving unit, he sees that his services are needed.
What he was unsure of was how Florida’s offense looked. With a traditional passing quarterback, Benjamin expected to see a few more deep plays from the Gators.
“(The offense) was OK, but they didn’t throw the ball like I wanted them to,” he said.
Benjamin will be back in Gainesville for the South Carolina game on Nov. 13.
Blakely shows Gators love
In a last-minute decision, Bradenton Manatee running back Mike Blakely drove up for the game Saturday. He took the SAT in the morning and wasn’t expected to come up.
While at the game, Blakely wore Gators shorts, a Gator T-shirt and a Gator hat. He also had a boot on his foot, but there have been no reports of him being injured.
Blakely currently has Auburn as his leader with Florida No. 2. He’s still considering South Carolina, but the Tigers and Gators will probably be the final two schools in the running for his services. Florida was his leader for most of the summer.
Florida’s coaches must have found it hard to spread their attention between Blakely and Punta Gorda Charlotte running back Mike Bellamy, who was also on hand. Bellamy was originally Florida’s top target at running back until he committed to Clemson this summer.
According to a source, Bellamy left Florida’s game at halftime Sunday because he was “bored” with both the game and how Florida’s offense looked. This might put an end to Florida’s recruitment of Bellamy.
Also in attendance was Daytona Beach Mainland running back — and Clemson commit — Marlin Lane. Though he’s always been pretty high on Florida, word is that he’s very solid to Clemson and has too much of a desire to play college ball outside of the state of Florida.
Jacksonville University Christian tight end commit A.C. Leonard was in attendance Saturday, but according to a report from 247sports.com, he came away from Florida’s loss a little down on the Gators.
Leonard now says he’s down to three schools — Miami, Alabama and Florida.
When asked if he still considered himself committed to Florida, Leonard responded “Yeah, I guess.”
Some more top guys I saw in The Swamp:
DL Todd Barr (Lakewood, Calif.)
LB Stephone Anthony (Wadesboro, N.C., Anson)
LB Lamar Dawson (Danville, Kent., Boyle County)
LB A.J. Johnson (Gainesville, Ga.) Tennessee Verbal
DT Tim Jernigan (Lake City Columbia)
WR Quinta Funderburk (Chesapeake, Va., Oscar Smith)
WR Angelo Jean-Louis (Wellington Palm Beach Central) 2012
DE Jordan Jenkins (Hamilton, Ga., Harris County) 2012
DE Dante Fowler (St. Petersburg Lakewood) 2012
DT Omari Phillips (Venice) 2012
DT Justin Shanks (Prattville, Ala.) 2012