With less than a week remaining before national signing day, many college football teams are scrambling to put the finishing touches on their recruiting class.
The Florida Gators, however, are still trying to build theirs. With only ten commitments, one of which is very shaky at this point, the Gators staff is furiously trying to close strong. Here’s the latest on some recruits still remaining on the Gators board.
OT/DT Steven Clark from Guntersville (AL), a Syracuse commit who received a late offer from Florida, will finally make his final choice known on Thursday evening.
Originally expected to announce his decision on Monday after taking an official visit to Florida, he backed off choosing to take a break before making his decision.
It appears now he’s ready to make that announcement.
Atlanta (GA) Dunwoody offensive tackle Nick Buchanan (6-4 280) is one of the hottest recruits in the south right now.
A Cal commit, he recently received offers from several major southern programs, including Florida and Georgia, in the final rush before signing day.
He took an official visit to the home state Bulldogs this past weekend, a visit he rated an eight or a nine according to Jake Rowe of Dawgs247sports and, on Wednesday, he hosted two Georgia assistants for an in-home visit.
This weekend the plan is to take a visit to Florida and then make a decision on signing day.
“Tonight’s (in-home) visit didn’t really affect how I feel about UGA. It was just a chance to get to know the coaches a little more, Buchanan said in an article by Michael Carvell on AJC.com. “I’m just going to wait until after this weekend’s visit to Florida to think more about everything.”
With the Gators looking for three to five more offensive lineman this cycle (they have three committed already) expect the staff to amp up the pressure this weekend aiming for a commitment.
For his part, he wants to compare visits to the three schools before making a final decision which means a weekend commitment is unlikely.
“Right now, as I actually go on visits I’m still 100-percent to Cal committed and everything, because I didn’t feel that visit was better than anything I could have received at Cal. It was a great visit, but I had a great visit at Cal,” Buchanan said in an article by Luke Stampini of Florida247sports.
“As far as Florida, I still have my baseline comparison that I’m comparing everything to, because you can’t really make an insightful decision without knowing all the information that you can.”
While still committed to Cal at least publicly, most analysts do not expect him to sign with them. This one is a two-horse race between UGA and Florida.
Four star WR Derrick Dillon (5-11 173) from Franklinton (LA) Pine has been committed to the Gators since May. However, that was before he finally received an offer from the home state LSU Tigers, an offer he described as a dream come true.
Now it appears his Gator commitment may be slip sliding away. He took an official visit to the Tigers on the 16th and has been very tight lipped since.
He was expected to take an unofficial visit to Florida this weekend for a final look at an old school with a new staff. There have been rumblings, however, that he may not visit after all.
It’s very important the Gators get one last crack at him particularly on campus where they have a chance to overcome any momentum LSU picked up on his visit there.
Rest assured, if he indeed visits, the Gators have a great shot to keep him, but if he doesn’t, then pencil him in at LSU.
Another recruit expected to visit the Gators this weekend is defensive end Richard McBryde.
The Auburn commit that some had speculated might be being pushed out of their class by new defensive coordinator Will Muschamp, was scheduled to visit this weekend but instead has scuttled those plans.
It appears he will remain a Tiger.
A name to look out for this weekend might be Hampton (GA) Lovejoy cornerback Montrell Custis (6-0 175).
The three star recruit has flip-flopped his commitment between Kentucky and Alabama but now it appears he’s been pushed out by Bama.
He’s scheduled to visit Florida this weekend, and with the Gators needing bodies across the board at this point, the staff is likely to push for a commitment.
He’s down to three finalists, Florida, Ole Miss, and Kentucky and the Gators have as good a shot as any and the last visit.
Another player to watch this weekend for a possible flip is Bradenton (FL) IMG Academy offensive tackle Tyree St. Louis (6-6 300).
The Miami Hurricane commit will visit the Gators this weekend and the staff will work hard to sell him on an opportunity for early playing time and being the foundation of an offensive renaissance in Gainesville.
While most consider his commitment to Miami to be firm after taking his official there on the 16th, he is a huge priority for the new staff so expect them to pull out all the stops to flip his commitment this weekend.
As always, stay tuned to Swamp Music for more Swamp Rumors and the latest on Florida Gator recruiting.