Florida Gators: Louisville Cardinals

National signing day is approaching quickly. With three official visit weekends remaining before Feb. 5, here is a look at a number of prospects who could flip to and/or from SEC schools in the coming weeks.

Florida commit Ermon Lane (Homestead, Fla./Homestead): Lane, No. 28 in the ESPN 300, is scheduled to officially visit national champion Florida State with the Gators fighting hard to keep the uber-talented wide receiver. The flip from Florida to the Seminoles by Dalvin Cook (Miami/Central High), the nation’s No. 20 prospect, makes the chore even tougher for the Gators


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The Early Offer is RecruitingNation's regular feature, giving you a daily dose of recruiting in the mornings. Today’s offerings: Texas’ hire of Charlie Strong could help the Longhorns open up new recruiting territories, but it will also be important for him to hire assistants who have ties to the Lone Star State. Louisville’s top 25 class is very much in flux after Strong’s departure.

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GAINESVILLE, Fla. -- Four-star offensive tackle Kavaris Harkless (Jacksonville, Fla./Trinity Christian Academy) was already in Louisville, trying to get ready for his first college classes on Monday and the below-zero temperatures heading his way.

On Sunday the rumors that had been swirling all weekend, that Cardinals head coach Charlie Strong would accept the same job at Texas, came true.

Just like that, Harkless' plans -- and forecast -- changed dramatically. In a matter of hours, he'll drive south to Gainesville to enjoy much warmer weather, enroll at Florida and sign his letter of intent to play for the Gators instead.


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The Early Offer is RecruitingNation's latest feature, giving you a daily dose of recruiting in the mornings. Today's offerings: Several recruits in Los Angeles took to Twitter on Wednesday to criticize Lane Kiffin, sparking a heated debate with Trojan fans; how Florida losing a four-star offensive line commitment is a good thing, and Oklahoma sends out offers to two of the nation’s top juniors.

Baker cooking up something great 

September, 5, 2013
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A year ago, Jerome Baker Jr. (Cleveland/Benedictine) toiled in obscurity.

Now, the 6-foot-1, 202-pound junior can’t move an inch without someone asking about him.

Such is the life of an ESPN Junior 300 standout that has burst onto the scene as a can’t-miss prospect in the 2015 class.


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ESPN.com's preseason power rankings

August, 9, 2013
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College Football Power Rankings illustrationESPN IllustrationTBD BY EDITORIAL


Not surprisingly, the back-to-back BCS champions are again preseason favorites and top ESPN's power rankings. But a number of elite programs are ready for their chance to dethrone the king.

Top 15 breakdown
No. 1 Alabama
No. 2 Ohio State
No. 3 Oregon
No. 4 Stanford
No. 5 Texas A&M
No. 6 (tie) Georgia
No. (tie) South Carolina
No. 8 Louisville
No. 9 Clemson
No. 10 Florida
No. 11 Florida State
No. 12 LSU
No. 13 Notre Dame
No. 14 (tie) Michigan
No. 14 (tie) Texas

GAINESVILLE, Fla. -- CeCe Jefferson isn't ready to commit yet, but the ESPN Junior 300 defensive end has at least named a leader.

Jefferson has put Florida top his list and said he plans on being on campus a lot during the season. But the Glen St. Mary (Fla.) Baker County standout says he's still going to take some trips elsewhere before making his decision.


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Trey LylesCourtesy David Dixon/tnl1.comNo. 4 recruit Trey Lyles trimmed his list to Kentucky, Louisville, Florida and Butler this week, but it could come down to a battle between John Calipari and Rick Pitino.

NORTH AUGUSTA, S.C. -- Trey Lyles cut his final college list to four earlier this week down here at the Peach Jam, and the onetime Indiana commit kept the dream alive when both Louisville and Kentucky remained in the hunt.

Lyles is a stud, ranked No. 4 in the ESPN 100. Think a 6-foot-9, 250-pound version of Tim Duncan. Not overly athletic, but super skilled and with an extremely high IQ. The senior power forward out of Arsenal Tech in Indianapolis can score with both hands in the paint, has terrific touch around the basket, can bury shots from midrange, and can even step out beyond the arc and drain shots from deep.

No. 1 point guard Tyus Jones and No. 1 overall Jahlil Okafor have soaked up the majority of the headlines in the 2014 class thanks to their talents and their willingness to play together in college, but Lyles could have as much of a winning impact as anyone in this entire group. He’s a versatile scorer who can rebound, pass and help lead a team. He’s more than capable of being a double-double guy as a freshman in college thanks to his rebounding instincts.

Florida and Butler also made the cut in Lyles’ final four, but this one could very well come down to a Battle of the Bluegrass. In fact, many of those close to this recruitment feel it will ultimately be John Calipari vs. Rick Pitino.

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No. 4 Trey Lyles down to four

July, 12, 2013
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ESPN 100 power forward Trey Lyles (Indianapolis/Arsenal Tech) has narrowed his choices to four schools, according to a post on his Twitter account.

The 6-foot-8 Lyles tweeted a picture of the four remaining schools on Instagram on Thursday night. Florida, Butler, Kentucky and Louisville will vie for his services after he eliminated Duke and UCLA.

Lyles is currently in North Augusta, S.C. playing for Spiece Indy Heat in the Nike EYBL finals at the Peach Jam.
The Louisville Cardinals will have a late addition to their 2013 recruiting class, as ESPN 300 linebacker James Hearns (Tallahassee, Fla./Lincoln) announced he will enroll before July 13.

The 6-foot-3, 230-pound was previously committed to Florida, but academic concerns forced UF and other schools to back off of Hearns' recruitment. Hearns finally got the test scores he needed and will be academically eligible in the fall.

Hearns said he decided to attend Louisville because of the relationship he has built with the Cardinals' coaching staff.

"They are definitely on the upswing," Hearns said. "They will be going in to the ACC soon. Coach [Charlie] Strong is doing a lot of good things down there. The coaching staff really won me over. I've never been around a coaching staff that I've felt so comfortable around. It's like family. Coach Ron Dugans is from Tallahassee. My mom and aunt went to middle school with him. So we have a good relationship."

Hearns believes he has an opportunity to compete for playing time early in his career.

"I see me coming in and fitting in well," Hearns said. "They already have some good linebackers, but I still see an opportunity for me to come in and play early."

With the addition of Hearns, Louisville will have 19 prospects, including four in the ESPN 300 in its 2013 class.
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Four schools are standing out to four-star defensive tackle Daniel Cage (Cincinnati/Winton Woods), and he hopes to visit all four this summer.


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Jerome Baker (Cleveland/Benedictine) was told his recruitment would start blowing up after a successful sophomore season.

The 2015 running back/linebacker wasn’t expecting anything like this, however. And he surely wasn’t expecting the offers to come from such heavy hitters in the college football world, either.


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More SEC interest in Matt Elam 

April, 11, 2013
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Competition in the SEC continues to heat up for Matt Elam.


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T.J. Harrell to lean on visits 

March, 29, 2013
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T.J. Harrell (Tampa, Fla./Tampa Catholic) is going to be leaning heavily on visits.

The 6-foot, 197-pound two-way athlete has a bunch of offers, but to distinguish them, he's going to have to see what the school is like behind the brochures he gets in the mail.


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Telep's Top 10: Sweet 16 recruiting stories 

March, 27, 2013
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This year’s NCAA tournament has been full of great stories, from Florida Gulf Coast’s Cinderella run to La Salle going from First Four to Sweet 16 to the Big Ten placing four teams in the final 16.

But what about the stories behind the stories -- the tales of how some of this year’s March Madness stars ended up at their eventual schools and helped shape this year’s tourney? To delve into those, this week’s top 10 looks at the 10 best recruiting stories from players and teams in the Sweet 16.

Top 10 Recruiting Stories From the Sweet 16

1. Trey Burke, Michigan
Mick Cronin is not going to want to hear this again, but it’s true. Burke was going to Cincinnati. It was nearly a done deal. But one last call to Michigan’s staff changed the fate of two programs. According to recruiting lore, Burke’s father called a final time asking Michigan if it was interested in Burke. If the answer was no, then Burke was going to Cincinnati. This was in late July of Burke’s pre-senior summer. Remember, it wasn’t like the now All-American was hot stuff then. He was good -- a late top-100 player -- but he wasn’t the player then that he has become. Ultimately, Michigan said it wanted Burke and the Wolverines landed him a few days later.

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Scene and Heard: Top 10 Predictions
In a conversation with ESPN's Antonietta Collins, national recruiting reporter Gerry Hamilton breaks down the recruiting momentum building at Auburn and offers predictions for where the top 10 recruits will commit.Tags: Trenton Thompson, Kerryon Johnson, Jeffery Holland, Martez Ivey, Torrance Gibson, Cece Jefferson, ESPN 300, RecruitingNation, high school football recruiting, Gerry Hamilton
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