Tuesday, April 16, 2013
Guide to UF's spring evaluation period
By Derek Tyson
GAINESVILLE, Fla. -- The spring evaluation period started Monday, and the Florida coaching staff wasted no time getting out and visiting top prospects.
Here are a few players, places and positions the coaches have visited or will focus on during the next six weeks.
Florida will have to battle several other high-profile teams for Watch List CB Jalon Tabor.
The Florida coaching staff appeared to have focused its attention on out-of-state prospects Monday. Florida offensive line coach Tim Davis visited ESPN Watch List offensive tackle Alex Bars (Nashville/Montgomery Bell), while running backs coach Brian White and defensive backs coach Travaris Robinson visited offensive tackle Damian Prince (Forestville, Md./Bishop McNamara) and cornerback Jalen Tabor (Washington, D.C./Friendship).
Florida defensive line coach Brad Lawing visited Lamont Gaillard (Fayetville, N.C./Pine Forest). Gaillard, after visiting Florida for its spring game, named the Gators his leader, but after a weekend visit to Georgia he said he has no leader. Lawing wasted little time getting back to see Gaillard.
Defensive coordinator D.J. Durkin made several stops in Virginia, including visits to defensive end Da'Shawn Hand (Woodbridge, Va./Woodbridge), defensive tackle Andrew Brown (Chesapeake, Va./Oscar Frommel) and Virginia safety commit Quin Blanding (Virginia Beach, Va./Bayside).
It's hard to know exactly which uncommitted in-state targets will receive visits from Florida coaches, but a few should get a lot of attention.
OL David Sharpe (Jacksonville, Fla./Providence Christian) -- The ESPN Watch List tackle visited Florida for its spring game and already has a strong relationship with the Florida coaching staff. With Jacksonville being just a short drive from Gainesville, expect Sharpe to be one of the first in-state prospects seen.
RB Sony Michel (Plantation, Fla./American Heritage) -- Michel will be making his decision at the end of April and the Gators are right in the mix. Look for Florida to try and turn the heat up on Michel in the next few days.
CB Chris Lammons (Fort Lauderdale, Fla./Plantation) -- The Gators will be thin at the cornerback position after next year, and Lammons might be the top corner in the state. There is a lot of talent in South Florida this year and Lammons will be right at the top of Florida's board.
DT Khairi Clark (Hollywood, Fla./Chaminade-Madonna) -- Clark recently visited Florida and the Gators moved to near the top of his list. Look for Florida to continue to make Clark a priority along the defensive line.
CB Tyrek Cole (Miramar, Fla./Miramar) -- Cole is sure to be one of the top cornerback prospects in the state next year and the Gators will start early in making him a top target.
RB Jacques Patrick (Orlando, Fla./Timber Creek) -- At one point, Patrick had the Gators as his leader. He now says he's wide open, but the Gators still seem to be in a good position.
WR George Campbell (Tarpon Springs, Fla./East Lake) -- At 6-foot-4 and 200 pounds, Campbell is an athletic freak and could play multiple positions. The Gators like him as a receiver and he will be a top target for next year.