July 30th, 2013 09:00am

Recap of FNL


Florida head coach Will Muschamp, right, talks with defensive coordinator D. J. Durkin, left, as they watch high school football players take part in the University of Florida's Friday Night Lights at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium in Gainesville, Friday July 26, 2013. (Brad McClenny/Staff photographer)

Friday Night Lights proved to be another annual success for Florida football recruting, as the Gators landed the top receiver for 2015 and put themselves in great position with a several of other prospects.

The story of the night on the field was the play of UF commit Will Grier, who once again showed the future of Florida’s quarterback position is in good hands.

He also took the opportunity to recruit receivers such as ESPN150 member Travis Rudolph. He hasn’t spoke to the media since the showcase but appeared to be having a good time interacting with Grier and Joker Phillips.

Obviously the biggest news outside of the camp was five-star Adoree’ Jackson. The two-sport athlete gave positive marks about his trip and enjoyed his time in Gainesville.

One thing that should not be underestimated in Jackson’s recruitment to Florida is his relationship with track coach Mike Holloway.

Holloway doesn’t miss on many prospects he personally recruits, and Jackson calls him on a weekly basis — sometimes every other day. A source even told The Sun that Holloway has already started giving Jackson personal workouts to do back home in California.

There is still a lot of time left with Jackson, who wants to take his officials and announce on signing day, but the Gators have to be happy about where they currently stand.

The same can be said about linebacker Richard Yeargin III and cornerbacks Chris Lammons and Quincy Wilson. The Fort Lauderdale trio came up for FNL and left giving off strong vibes about UF. Although they each have a Top 5, Florida is clearly the favorite for all of them right now.

As is the case every year, some recruits did not make it in. Alabama running back commit Bo Scarbrough and his cousin, UF tight end commit C’yontai Lewis, were two of them.

Although Scarbrough was always going to be tough to pull out of Tuscaloosa, the Gators’ chances look even slimmer with his latest no-show (he also didn’t camp in June).

Defensive end Trent Harris, a longtime UF-lean who was initally scheduled to decide at his spring game, chose not to attend Friday Night Lights after Florida picked up Justus Reed last Thursday. The Gators had room for only one of them, and Harris simply got beat to the punch. He committed to Miami on Monday.

For those questioning why the coaches couldn’t wait on Harris, a higher-rated prospect, Reed came to camp, impressed the staff, earned his offer and didn’t wait long to jump on it.

Although a few 2015 prospects weren’t on hand as planned, including running back Jacques Patrick, offensive lineman Martez Ivey and LSU cornerback commit Kevin Toliver II, it didn’t stop the Gators from laying a solid foundation for the next recruiting cycle.

They added their first member of the class in Da’Vante Phillips. He is the No. 1-ranked receiver in the ESPN300 and gives UF another Miami product, as he joins running back commit and Central teammate Dalvin Cook.

Florida strengthened its lead for defensive ends Byron Cowart and CeCe Jefferson. The close friends, who want to be roomates in college, worked out alongside each other throughout the event and even discussed pulling the trigger that night.

The Gators also made a big impression on linebacker Jeffery Holland. Unlike Sherrod Pittman, the UF coaches would take Holland right now, and he appears to be leaning their way.

Florida also improved its standing with defensive tackle Trenton Thompson. The Gators went from out of his Top 3 to No. 2 following FNL. Georiga remains in front for Thompson with a sizable edge, but UF should be encourged by the move it made for him.

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  1. July 30th, 2013 10:24 am

    Zach, What are your thoughts on Campbell committting to Michigan this past weekend? He looks like a stud and I thought he was high on Florida?

    by Matt

  2. July 30th, 2013 10:49 am

    I still betrayed by Campbell but that’s his choice. He would have given us 2015 class momentum that Michigan is enjoying right now. Do it for your home state Campbell. Zach what do you think. Have you talked to him?

    by J

  3. July 30th, 2013 11:16 am

    Grier is doing a nice job showing receiver recruits the future of Florida Gator football. He will seal the deal on a few more weapons in the coming months.

    by Homer J

  4. July 30th, 2013 11:32 am

    So encouraged by Grier’s performances of late AND that he is recruiting receivers. Keep up the great work Will and Zach!

    by East ATL Gator

  5. July 30th, 2013 11:52 am

    Regarding T Harris,
    Cane fans and the Miami Herald making this verbal a big win for them…stealing him from Florida.

    by rickyD

  6. July 30th, 2013 1:21 pm

    I just dont understand the Campbell thing? Where did Michigan come from?

    by mike

  7. July 30th, 2013 1:36 pm

    Hey Zach,

    Did any other prospects off the beaten path raise eyebrows at FNL?

    by HedRock

  8. July 30th, 2013 3:45 pm

    I had read somewhere that Pease wasnt at FNL. Is that true and should we read anything into that?

    by NYCG8R

  9. July 30th, 2013 4:10 pm

    I was told Pease had to catch a flight to the event and his plane was delayed.

    by Zach Abolverdi

  10. July 30th, 2013 7:33 pm

    There was talent and size all over FNL…maybe too much to dilligently watch due to the number of stations and participants. Access to their info, (eg, name/size/school/class, etc) wiould help IMO. 2016 TE Devonaire Clarington caught my eye! Hate to see G. Campbell out in the cold; he’s got time to reconsider. Go Got Damn Gators!

    by TigerCatZeroZero

  11. July 30th, 2013 8:45 pm

    George said the Gators went cold on him a little, could be his grades… I know his teammate Mason Cole is also an M commit, and in his ear a lot and they camped together up there when George committed… I wish we would have been able to get him. He is a rare talent, almost 6′ 5″, and has run a 4.37 40, that is scary fast for that size at any level… It ain’t over till its over…

    by Swampman

  12. July 31st, 2013 7:37 am

    It’s about the fourth or fifth inning with recruiting for many of these young guys. A verbal commitment by Campbell to Michigan may mean the Wolverines have a runner on base but they haven’t scored with him until he signs the LOI. Muschamp is building another vital class and the end results promise to be very strong. It’s fun to watch.

    by Gatormac

  13. July 31st, 2013 12:13 pm

    Wow almost all the comments about a player a year and a half away from signing. He liked florida but that doesn’t mean he was supposed to go there. He’s always liked UM as well and his teammate is there so I can see why he would go there. His hands are terrible, which is why davante phillips is the better receiver right now. There are other good receivers in the 2015 class that’s high on us

    by Real gator

  14. July 31st, 2013 1:55 pm

    You obviously don’t know this kid at all Real, his hands are fine, and if you did know him at all, you’d know he would not stay at receiver with his size and frame… As an athlete with that size and speed, he could pretty much play a number of positions, which is why he is considered an athlete, not a receiver…hope we do sign some more receivers though…

    by Swampman

  15. July 31st, 2013 9:38 pm

    It is critical that we keep on Campbell till he signs. Needs to be public about going after him hard as well.

    by J

  16. August 1st, 2013 12:39 am

    Its stunning to see people talking about “knowing” a kid who is a junior in high school. If someone with no real connection to the football program, or to the kid personally, has really taken the time to study him and “know” him, that’s just sad. Someone putting that much time and effort in to researching a kid barely old enough to drive is why these kids show up at college with the attitude that they are already stars.

    by LT

  17. August 1st, 2013 1:54 am

    Lol @swampman unless you’ve seen him in person then I dont think you can judge my comment or tell me where he will or will not play. that is the consensus among analyst that have seen him live that his hands need to improve. I never said he wasn’t good nor did i say I didn’t want him to be a gator. That wasnt even the point of my post. I know exactly what an athlete is not sure what the point in telling me that was. Maybe you should be a scout

    by Real gator

  18. August 1st, 2013 2:05 am

    LOYALTY…kids going out of state should always give UF and other In-State Universities first looks before going out of state. Especially before going to Alabama, Georgia, Michigan, and Ohio State. Stay true to good ole Florida. Go Florida

    by NassauGator

  19. August 1st, 2013 6:44 pm

    Zach, How come no mention of the son of former Gator Larry Kennedy? He was FNL.

    by Derek

  20. August 2nd, 2013 5:11 pm


    Not sure if you mind me changing gears or if this is the right forum but I am really wondering about Recruiting for the Mens BB team. If I am not mistaken we have 4 seniors but several underclassmen that could leave early if they have good years. Finney-smith and Hill IMO. Not to mention Walker if he makes it in. Sot that is a possible 7 spots to fill. We have two commits but I was wondering if you had an opinion on who else we might be able to get? I think we might be in good shape with Black but who else do we have a legit shot with.

    Thanks for any info…

    by Matt

  21. August 2nd, 2013 5:15 pm

    By the way Eli Carter is now listed on the Gatorzone website as being on the roster. I did not know he was cleared but that is good news!

    by Matt

  22. August 2nd, 2013 9:53 pm

    Zach, is it to early to give us a projected class. It seems that there are a lot of recruits who seemed high on us and then commit elsewhere. I trust that muschamp has a master plan and is getting the guys he wants and not basing his opinions on recruiting stars. Do you think he has the class filled out with silents?

    by Doug

  23. August 3rd, 2013 2:54 am

    Look im a little pissed fact is we are missing out on high prospects..Why i font know YEARGIN really wa the final straw. recruiting may be a marathon but eve in marathon if you fall to far behind you get lost with the rest of the loosers.. Fact is we are missing out on first second and third options..we will not bge champs with a team full of sleepers. Eventually we need some thoroughbreds to beef this class up at key positions of needs..at some point you have to say we are falling behind especially with teams like Mich and our key rivals with such big time talent in there classes.

    by gator guy

  24. August 3rd, 2013 11:43 am

    Look guys, you take this stuff too seriously, George plays football and basketball with my son. The only reason I said anything was because it was comical to hear people talk about the kid like they knew him, and then state some friend of theirs who is unknown is somehow better. I played football at every level, and I know when I see a special athlete… More than anything, I’m concerned because we only have 11 verbals with the season starting… I am a Gator for life… Go Gators!

    by Swampman

  25. August 3rd, 2013 4:06 pm

    Look Ermon Lane 5* and Quincy Wilson 4* announce August 10th and most likely to UF. Odds are Chris Lammons 4* will follow shortly after. U guys need to quit panicking. We’ve got right around 10 5* that have us in their top groups, most of which want to take Official visits and announce either at a all star game or NSD. We’ll get ours just be patient. 2015 commits mean nothing right now we have plenty of time to flip those prospects.

    by Real gator

  26. August 4th, 2013 11:33 am

    There was a WR at FNL13 making nice game type catches during 1 on 1…not sure who it was but I am thinking it was Deon Cain (2015)? Anyone know for sure? I saw him catch 2 that were contested and dude would elevate and go get it with no fear of landing on his back! He definitely stood out to me…but then I lost him among the other 9,000 participants! Go Gators!

    by TigerCatZeroZero

  27. August 4th, 2013 11:37 am

    Rivals has him listed at 6’2″ 190, 4.4/40…no UF offer???? Go Gators!

    by TigerCatZeroZero

  28. August 4th, 2013 12:19 pm

    Swampman: Since you know George Campbell, maybe you can help us with this a little bit. I understand as well as questionable grades he has a very questionable attitude. Heard he made it plain to UF coaches he didn’t like not being Gators top priority for wr next year. If that’s true I can see why UF backed off.

    by ron

  29. September 19th, 2013 1:07 pm

    [...] the Gators currently lead for the two-sport athlete from Gardena (Calif.) Junipero Serra. As I reported after Friday Night Lights, UF track coach Mike Holloway is a major player in Jackson’s recruitment and has already [...]

    by Zach's Mail Stack 9/19 | Gator Prospectus Gator Prospectus - Gator Sports - Gainesville, FL - Archive

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