GatorNation recruiting mailbag


GAINESVILLE, Fla. -- It’s time to dip in to the GatorNation recruiting mailbag and answer the questions you want to know. Because of the amount of questions we’ve received, we won’t be able to get to all of them today, but we encourage you to ask your questions on our Insider fan forum, The Chompions Club.

flgator9606: Why are WRs lining up for UF this recruiting cycle but that did not happen last cycle?

A: Well for one there were not many elite wide receivers in the southeast in the 2012 class. Florida targeted top prospects such as Nelson Agholor and Stefon Diggs and felt good about landing both. Obviously losing Charlie Weis just before signing day did not help, but it appeared as though Florida put all of its eggs in those two baskets. For the 2013 class there are several top in-state prospects, such as Ahmad Fulwood, Stacy Coley, Reggie Davis, Taj Williams, Richard Benjamin, Rodney Adams and Travis Johnson. Expect the Gators to land three or four receivers in 2013.

mobaychitown: Last year was my first full year paying full attention to recruiting. How excited should I be about the pace that we've set so far? Are we setting up for a monster class or just getting our ducks in a row sooner rather than later (signing day)?

A: With 10 early commits there is definitely reason to be excited about the Florida recruiting class. If Florida didn't get another commit the Gators would still end up with three five-star players in Caleb Brantley, Nick Washington and Kelvin Taylor. Don't worry though, Florida could sign anywhere from 20-24 players in this class, and UF will be in the mix for several other five-star players including Fulwood, Coley and offensive tackle Laremy Tunsil. Unless they fall apart during the season, the Gators are on pace to land another top-five class.

alvarez16: I know OL is a huge need for UF this year, and you've said many times that UF is targeting several in-state and out-of-state OL recruits. Florida already has 10 commitments and not a single one is an OL. Considering the fact that UF is planning to sign 3-5 OL, do you still see this happening?

A: Without a doubt I still believe this will happen. Florida could sign as many as six offensive linemen in this class. Remember new offensive line coach Tim Davis hasn't been in Gainesville for very long, but Florida is going hard after some of the top linemen in the country right now. Brandon Kublanow, Isaac Rochell and Josh Outlaw are all expected to visit this weekend. The Gators have positioned themselves nicely for Outlaw. Tunsil is a five-star tackle prospect who is also high on the Gators. Expect many more visitors from linemen over the spring. By the time Florida's summer camp is over with, there will be a much clearer picture of how the offensive line class will look.

secrocks2000: What do you think the WR board looks like? I keep seeing you post "There are some guys higher up on the board," so I was just wondering who the coaches are going after the hardest.

A: Like I mentioned in an earlier question, there are several to in-state wide receivers, but there are some talented out-of-state players as well. The Gators obviously like Fulwood. After all, he only lives about an hour and a half away in Jacksonville. Florida remains the leader for Coley, a very talented receiver. Though Francis Owusu would be a tough pull from California, the Florida coaching staff has ties to him and are very high on Owusu. Demarcus Robinson from Fort Valley (Ga.) is another receiver prospect the Gators like. With Florida taking only three to four receivers and one of those spots already filled by Adams, the Gators will need to be selective going forward.

dukeoden: DT, just give me a update on visitors this weekend and chances for a commit.

A: Here is a look at some of the weekend visitors. You can also add Florida linebacker commit Quinton Powell and defensive back prospect Reggie Wilkerson to that list as well. As for commits, it's hard to say. Florida is hosting a coaches clinic this Saturday, so there will be a lot going on. Recent Tennessee cornerback decommit Mackensie Alexander will be making his third trip to Gainesville and will be bringing along his family. I'm not predicting he commits, but I would not be shocked if he decides to pull the trigger.

secrocks2000: How do the numbers in this class break down? Last year's class was heavy on defense. Is this class going to have more offensive than defensive players?

A: Seven of Florida's 10 commits are on the defensive side of the ball. With that being said I expect Florida to land at the very minimum nine more offensive players, including five offensive linemen, three wide receivers and a quarterback. They are also pursuing the tight end position aggressively as well. It will definitely be interesting to see how the dominoes fall over the next several months.

ESPN.com recruiting reporter Derek Tyson can be reached by email at DerekTysonESPN@gmail.com or you can follow him Twitter: @DerekTysonESPN.