- Derek Tyson, RecruitingNation
GatorNation brings you the latest installment of Chomp Confidential, a look inside Florida football recruiting for GatorNation subscribers only. As with anything exclusive, what's reported in the weekly Chomp Confidential must stay here. A few things discussed in this week's update:
• Big recruiting weekend
• Latest on Diggs
• Miles a LB
• How will Florida close?
Check out the weekly Chomp Confidential.
Big weekend ahead
Signing day is coming down to the wire and the Gators have a huge recruiting weekend ahead of them. This weekend will be filled with several top prospects, committed prospects and guys that have already enrolled.
Stefon Diggs, Tracy Howard, Dante Fowler Jr., Alex McCalister, Avery Johnson and Bryan Cox Jr. are all expected to visit this weekend. In addition to those uncommitted prospects, committed players Matt Jones, Marcus Maye, Colin Thompson and Brian Poole are also expected to be in Gainesville.
Combine the committed players with the six players already enrolled, and the uncommitted prospects are sure to receive a heavy dose of Orange and Blue love.
Don’t expect to see any commitments immediately, save for Bryan Cox Jr., if he gets an offer, but this weekend will play a major role in how Florida finishes. McCalister is announcing his decision between Florida and Georgia Tech on Monday, right now it’s pretty even between the two schools.
Florida looking good for Diggs?
Top wide receiver Stefon Diggs visited Auburn last week by himself, and by all accounts he had a good time. Diggs, however, will visit Gainesville this week with his mother, his mother’s boyfriend and possibly his brother.
I spoke on Monday with Diggs’ mentor and former coach Will Flaherty, who told me that Florida has done an excellent job of recruiting Diggs. He said no matter what happened with coaching changes, Florida has constantly been in contact with Diggs from the very beginning.
Does that mean Diggs is a lock to Florida? Well, no, but Florida has definitely positioned itself nicely to land the talented player from Maryland.
Miles being recruited as a LB
Florida had previously told Tampa (Fla.) Berkeley Prep athlete Schyler Miles it was recruiting him as a fullback and linebacker. The Gators have softened that stance and told Miles earlier this week that they are now recruiting him solely as a linebacker.
Miles prefers linebacker, and I expect him to end up a Gator when all is said and done. This should also help with Berkeley Prep teammate Nelson Agholor. Florida and USC are battling it out for Agholor and it should come down to signing day.
Florida has lost three verbal commitments this recruiting cycle, and many thought the Gators were in danger of losing another -- Dante Phillips.
After an in-home visit with the Florida coaches this week, Phillips reaffirmed his pledge to the Gators. He had flirted with the idea of visiting Miami, but it appears that visit will not take place. Instead Phillips could take a visit to USF, but that is not set in stone either.
With Florida’s lack of depth at the defensive tackle position, it can ill afford to lose a guy with Phillips' size and athletic ability.
How will Florida close?
Florida still has roughly 7-9 slots remaining to fill in this recruiting class. With so many top prospects holding off their announcements until signing day, it begs the question how will the Gators finish?
Diggs, Agholor, Avery Young, McCalister, Fowler, Darius Hamilton, Vincent Valentine, Cox, Jake Meador, Johnson, Ja’Quay Williams and Leonard Williams all remain on Florida’s recruiting board. Just like every other year, there is sure to be a new name pop up on the board right before signing day.
It’s hard to know what exactly an 18-year-old high school student is thinking, but in my opinion the Gators will land a handful of the guys listed above and possibly a surprise or two, and finish with a class ranking in the top two.