Well my friends, we’ve reached the end of the road.
National Signing Day is less than a week away and this is the final Mail Stack until the summer.
The 2013 recruiting cycle is the first that I covered from start to finish, and I had a blast bringing you all breaking news, writing features and answering your questions on this blog.
Thanks to everyone who left comments throughout the year, especially the ones from my most recent story. I appreciate all the kind words and can’t wait to get the 2014 class cranking!
This weekend Florida hosts JUCO quarterback Tanner McEvoy, receivers James Clark and Ryan Timmons and defensive tackle Jay-nard Bostwick. JUCO defensive tackle Jarran Reed (Ole Miss) and defensive end Tashawn Bower (Auburn) will visit the schools they’re currently committed to, while linebacker Quinton Powell and cornerback Jalen Ramsey stay home to mull over their decisions.
As I first reported on Wednesday, fullback Kennard Swanson will attend a junior college because of his academics. And for those who asked me yet again about Robert Nkdemiche and Montravius Adams, it’s not happening folks. Ndemiche is Ole Miss bound and it’s either Clemson or Georgia for Adams. The Gators got them on campus for official visits and recruited them diligently. Aside from a commitment, that’s all you can ask for when pursuing five-star prospects.
On to the questions!
Is it going to be another quiet signing day for UF like last year? — Georgia GATORBOI
Barring a surprise commit, I would say so. But this year will be quiet for different reasons. Last February, Florida struck out with every uncommitted prospect it was in contention for and didn’t sign a full class. The Gators have already met their needs this time around and they’re only in the running for a handful of recruits as a result. Their class has made so much noise that it won’t matter whether or not they have a quiet Wednesday.
What are the chances we actually flip Jalen Ramsey? — Brandon, Bamos, Christopher, Dustin, FS, Garrett, Jake, Jacob, Jerome, Jimmie, Nathan, Sebastian.
Most sites have him either sticking with USC or flipping to FSU, but I believe the Gators remain right in the thick of things. The Ramsey camp is completely quiet right now and all three schools feel confident, so it’s hard to say for sure what he’s going to do. I think Ramsey doesn’t even know yet and will make a final decision over the weekend.
At this time, I still feel it will be Florida when I make my official prediction on Tuesday. Will Muschamp got the final in-home visit with Ramsey on Thursday night and is the last coach to see him before he signs. That face time coupled with the pro-Florida factors I listed last week gives UF the edge in my mind.
However, that’s just an educated guess and my opinion on Ramsey could change by the time you’ve read this blog. That’s how fluid his recruitment has been. And although missing out on a five-star corner for the second-consecutive year (Tracy Howard in 2012) would hurt Gator fans, it won’t hurt Florida’s cornerback position. UF already has the nation’s top CB and No. 2 overall prospect committed in Vernon Hargreaves III. End of story.
Who does UF want more between James Clark and Ryan Timmons? Would they take both receivers? — T.J., FS, Phillip
If you compare offers and watch their highlight tapes, it’s pretty clear that Clark is the better prospect and he’s the priority for UF. Timmons put up some impressive numbers in high school, but Clark has better moves and appears to be faster.
Florida’s board is shrinking as we approach NSD and the Gators would have room for Clark and Timmons if both wanted in, but the likelihood of that happening is very slim. Seven receivers is a bit much for one class and I doubt UF wants two wideouts with basically identical skill sets. Besides, I think Timmons stays close to home and picks Kentucky.
Zach, who’s the guy nobody is talking about right now from this class that people are going to end up remembering? A guy like Ahmad Black. — Jimmy
I haven’t heard much about Kelvin Taylor, so I’ll go with him. Jussst kidding. All (bad) jokes aside, I’m going to stay in the secondary and say Keanu Neal. Even though Neal is an All-American, I feel like he’s been overshadowed by Hargreaves and Marcell Harris in this class. But I’ve been impressed every time I watched him in a game or combine. Neal is absolutely jacked and knows how to play the safety position. He has a great head on his shoulders and a brother who played in the NFL for seven years, so I think he can become a memorable player at UF.
Final mock class? — Devin, Trey
Last week I had Florida closing with Bostwick, Clark, Powell, Ramsey and Swanson, who is now out. Another prospect I’m going to remove is Powell. Last week I said the Trojans had a slight edge. But after dropping James Hearns, I thought the Gators would turn up the heat on Powell (which they did) and surpass Southern Cal. However, after speaking to him Thursday, I still get the sense that USC is in the lead for his services even though he’s telling me it’s 50-50. I hope to pick his brain some more before NSD.
QB Max Staver
RB Adam Lane
*RB Kelvin Taylor
WR Alvin Bailey
WR James Clark
WR Ahmad Fulwood
WR Marqui Hawkins
WR Chris Thompson
*WR Demarcus Robinson
OL Trenton Brown
OL Cameron Dillard
OL Octavius Jackson
OL Roderick Johnson
*OL Tyler Moore
DT Jay-nard Bostwick
DT Caleb Brantley
*DT Darious Cummings
*DL Joey Ivie
DL Antonio Riles
DE Jordan Sherit
*LB Alex Anzalone
LB Jarrad Davis
*LB Daniel McMillian
*LB Matt Rolin
CB Vernon Hargreaves III
CB Jalen Ramsey
DB Marcell Harris
DB Keanu Neal
DB Nick Washington
* — early enrollee