January 16th, 2012 02:27am

Can Pease recruit?


Will Muschamp found out over a decade ago.

The hard way.

“He’s an outstanding recruiter,” Muschamp said last week. “I ran across Brent about 12-14 years ago. I was at Valdosta State and he was at Northern Arizona. We were both recruiting a guy out of Lowndes County, Vincent ‘Sweet Pea’ Burns. He got [him] to leave Lowndes County to go to Northern Arizona, so right then I knew he could recruit.”

Burns signed with Northern Arizona in 2000 and made 27 tackles in nine games as a freshman. The next year he transferred to Kentucky and had two successful seasons with the Wildcats.

Burns was a tw0-time All-SEC selection (second team) by The Associated Press and the UK coaching staff named him the Most Outstanding Defensive Player in 2003. He led the SEC in tackles for loss (18) that season. Burns was selected by the Indianapolis Colts in the 3rd round of the 2005 NFL Draft, but a freak knee injury ended his pro career after just two seasons.

The fact that Burns followed Pease to Lexington shows the strength of their relationship, and he was the first of many Pease-recruited prospects that produced on the field.

“He does a great job developing relationships with people, and that’s all recruiting is,” Muschamp said. “Doing a good job of evaluating — which he’s done at Boise [State]. He signed two wideouts who were selected in the first three rounds [of the 2011 NFL Draft]. So obviously he’s a good evaluator … and he’s done a good job of developing players when they get on campus.”

The pair of receivers Muschamp mentioned were Austin Pettis and Titus Young. Pease recruited both of them and was their positional coach.

Pettis finished his Boise State career as the school’s all-time leader in both receptions (229) and touchdown catches (39). He was taken by the St. Louis Rams in the 3rd round and had 27 catches for 256 yards as a rookie.

Young caught a total of 204 passes for 3,063 yards and 25 touchdowns with the Broncos and was selected in the 2nd round by the Detroit Lions. He hauled in 48 receptions for 607 yards and six touchdowns this season.

Pease was also the primary recruiter for Boise State wide receiver Matt Miller and running back D.J. Harper. In 2011, Miller’s 62 receptions were tied for first on the team and Harper was the Broncos’ second-leading rusher.

The new UF coordinator has some experience in the Sunshine State too, with his most recent commitment coming from Orlando, Fla., Dr. Phillips dual-threat quarterback Nick Patti.

“He’s recruited throughout the state of Florida,” Muschamp said. “Mostly in the panhandle and north central region, but he’s also recruited in the Orlando area and Jacksonville. He’s very versed in this state.”

Pease will primarily target quarterbacks for the Gators and his future recruiting areas should be determined soon. But for now, Muschamp believes his track record on the headset and recruiting trail will excite the 2012 prospects.

“Any time you’re this late in the stage of recruiting, any question marks or issues you need to address — now we’ve addressed them,” Muschamp said. “Any recruit and any player at the University of Florida ought to be excited about who we hired and where we’re headed with this thing.”

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  1. January 16th, 2012 9:49 am

    Hopefully, he can pull Diggs back in to the fold! Also, I would like to see him get that QB, Guy.

    by Gi-Gator

  2. January 16th, 2012 10:50 am

    Pease’s addition to the staff might turn a couple of heads in our direction by the time NSD arrives. Hopefully Agholor and Diggs will be Gators, but what about a sleeper quarterback? We’ve got three guys, all in the same eligibility class, and two are potential superstars. Where will we stand on depth if the loser of the Brissett v. Driscoll
    competition for the starting job opts to transfer?

    by Gatormac

  3. January 16th, 2012 11:59 am

    Agholor is practically a Gator. Diggs liked us a lot at first then shied away when Weis left, but has now showed serious intrest with Pease here. We may also get a JUCO reciever in this mix too. We had a capable Texas transfer named Isom who will be a walk-on. Pease’s influence on the QB’s is what I’ll be anxious to see. Neither Driskel or Brissett will be wide-eyed freshmen this year as both got their baptisms of fire last season. Ought to be a fun spring.

    by Gator Todd

  4. January 16th, 2012 2:24 pm

    Did Driskel actually use up a year of eligibility? I hardly saw him out on the field. For what little playing time he got I wonder if he actually was redshirted. Either way, I’m assuming he is going into the spring game as #2 on the depth chart,behind Brissett and in front of Murphy. Also does anyone know how Ryan McGriff did as a walk on last year and what he projects to be?

    by GoGator

  5. January 16th, 2012 9:51 pm

    Great job Muschamp! He is truly building a program here at Florida with the hire of the new OC and strength and condition coach we will be contender in the SEC next year. If you listen to how we will be going to olympic style lifting that will produce the toughness that we did not see this year. BELIEVE IT OR NOT, FLORIDA SEC CHAMPS IN 2012!!!!

    by jalaruf

  6. January 17th, 2012 12:28 pm

    I’m a little concerned Pease is going to use this as a stepping stone to getting a head coach job. So we will be looking for an OC again in the next couple of years.

    by John S

  7. January 17th, 2012 7:16 pm

    Question for the Mail Stack. On twitter you said we had 7 coaches visit Stephon Diggs home yesterday. Do you have any info on how that went?

    by Texas Gator

  8. January 17th, 2012 7:31 pm

    Does anyone know what happened to Alex McAlister and his commitment today at 1:pm?


  9. January 17th, 2012 7:39 pm


    by KENARD

  10. January 17th, 2012 9:49 pm

    by FD

  11. January 17th, 2012 9:52 pm

    Creek – I read that there was an illness in the fam and as a result, he’s coming in this weekend and will declare next Tuesday instead.

    by BSJGator

  12. January 17th, 2012 11:02 pm

    Can u imagine Pease creative play calling with our 5 Wide Sets.. Heys guys just thinking of if we can sign Diggs & Agholor.. Think about our 5wide Receiver sets next season.. I say J. Story 6’3 200+ , S. Ali 6’6 200+, in the slots Diggs, Agholor, & Debose… If we improve in protection & Coach Pease coach up the QB’s like im sure he will. WOW!!!! GO GATORS

    by BHamGator

  13. January 18th, 2012 12:44 am

    He isn’t a recruit and redshirted, but what can we expect from JaJuan Story this year? He was supposed to be great and can we see him really blow up this year?

    by Adam Beaugh

  14. January 18th, 2012 5:52 am

    I know this is a recruiting blog, but I am more interested in seeing what these coaches can do wit the players we already have. Freshman impact should be icing, as they say.

    by Brr-bon Phil

  15. January 18th, 2012 10:06 pm

    Interesting article on Florida recruiting:

    by JD

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