GAINESVILLE, Fla. -- Florida landed its 17th verbal commitment on Saturday as three-star defensive tackle Joey Ivie (Dade City, Fla./Pasco) made his pledge to the Gators.
Ivie, who had offers from FSU, Tennessee, Ole Miss, Miami and Mississippi State, said his familiarity with the Florida program is what ultimately persuaded him to commit to the Gators.
"I grew up a Florida fan," Ivie said. "My grandparents went to Florida. I feel like Florida still has another [title] shot. Their future is looking very bright."
Ivie made his decision after participating at Florida's summer football camp on Saturday. He was joined by another Florida defensive tackle commit, Caleb Brantley (Crescent City, Fla./Crescent City). Ivie said Brantley also played a role in his decision to pull the trigger.
"I was talking to the other defensive line commit, Caleb Brantley. I was talking to him for a while," Ivie said. "He was telling me he needs someone else on the D-line next to him and some people to step it up. I'm just feeling orange and blue."
The 6-foot-4, 271-pound tackle said the experience of the Florida coaching staff will hopefully help him achieve his ultimate goal of playing in the NFL.
"I love Bryant Young. I love his experience," Ivie said. "He's been in the NFL. He has more sacks than Warren Sapp. It's ridiculous how good he was. On top of that, being coached by a guy that good and what you can learn from him and put it to reality and hopefully do some of the same things he did. Coach [Dan] Quinn has a lot of experience and coached a lot of great players. He's definitely a guy I want to be coached by."
After Saturday's camp, Ivie personally committed to Florida coach Will Muschamp.
“He was very excited,” Ivie said. “He said he about jumped out of his seat and said it’s about time. They were all giving me hugs and telling me welcome to the family.”
With the commitment of Ivie, the Gators now have nine defensive commitments and a total of 13 commitments from the state of Florida. Ivie is the second commitment of the week for the Gators, as 2014 wide receiver prospect Ryeshene Bronson committed to UF on Wednesday.