UPDATE: Harris committed to Florida. Gatorsports.com will now count UF with 22 commits. Former Nebraska offensive lineman Tyler Moore is no longer considered a transfer because he is enrolled at St. Petersburg College and has been reclassified as a JUCO prospect.
UF coach Will Muschamp is set add the 22nd member of his 2013 recruiting class.
Four-star safety Marcell Harris (Orlando, Fla./Dr. Phillips) will announce his college choice Thursday at 11 a.m. at his high school. He was originally scheduled to make his commitment on ESPNU’s Recruiting Nation show, but those plans fell through.
The finalists for Harris are Florida, Florida State, Oklahoma and Texas, and he officially visited all four schools this fall. However, he went to UF a total of 10 times during his recruiting process, most recently for the Jackonsville State game (his sixth visit since June). Florida State received the second most visits with five, but the loss of defensive coordinator Mark Stoops killed any chances the Seminoles had.
Florida’s coaching staff, which is on the road this week recruiting, had an in-home visit with Harris on Tuesday night.
The ESPN150 member has favored UF all along because of his ties to Gainesville, familiarity with the school and desire to play in the SEC. He also likes the fact that Muschamp, his personal recruiter, coaches his position. Harris will be putting on a Gator hat Thursday.
Four-star defensive end Ebenezer Ogundeko (Brooklyn, N.Y./Thomas Jefferson) and JUCO offensive tackle Trenton Brown (Milledgeville, Ga./Georgia Military) have pushed back their decisions.
Both attended the Jacksonville State game and called Florida their top school afterward, which is still the case.
However, Ogundeko now has Clemson tied with the Gators at No. 1 after visiting there last weekend. He will wait to announce at the Under Armour-All American Game rather than the second week of December. Ogundeko also won’t visit Ole Miss this weekend as previously planned. He still has an official visit scheduled to Syracuse on Dec. 8, but the hometown school isn’t a favorite for him at this time.
Brown was going to decide this week, but he will now make up his mind on either Dec. 19 or Dec. 20. The 6-foot-8, 350-pounder visited FSU last Wednesday and Oklahoma over the weekend, but the Gators are still his leader following those trips.
UF-OSU battling for LBs
Ohio State head coach Urban Meyer is pursuing three linebackers on Florida’s board, two of which are currently committed.
Daniel McMillian (Jacksonville, Fla./First Coast) took an official visit to Columbus last weekend and reportedly had a good time, but he’s still solid with the Gators and the general consensus is that he sticks. He will take his official to UF for the banquet weekend on Dec. 8 and make his final decision shortly afterward so he can enroll early.
James Hearns (Tallahassee, Fla./Lincoln) is the softest verbal in Florida’s class. He is 80-90 percent committed to the Gators and has expressed interest in the Buckeyes since late September. UF will host him on an official for the banquet, but Ohio State gets his last visit on Jan. 11.
Fortunately for the Gators, they have another option at inside linebacker should Hearns bolt for the Buckeyes. ESPN150 member Trey Johnson (Lawrenceville, Ga./Central Gwinnett) decommitted from Auburn on Tuesday following the firing of head coach Gene Chizik.
UF and Ohio State are the new leaders for Johnson. He visited Columbus last weekend and returns to Gainesville for an official on Dec. 14. Johnson attended Florida’s game against South Carolina.
It’s unlikely that either school can land both linebackers, so it should come down to who ends up where as National Signing Day approaches.