- Derek Tyson, RecruitingNation
GAINESVILLE, Fla. -- The Gators are currently holding down the No. 3-ranked recruiting class in the country for the 2013 class and have just a handful of spots remaining. Florida has also given its attention to a loaded 2014 class. With the talent in Florida next year, there will be plenty of prospects to chose from.
The state of Florida has an impressive 53 players on the ESPN Watch List. The Gators already have commitments from two players, defensive tackle Travonte Valentine (Palm Bay, Fla./Bayside) and wide receiver Ryeshene Bronson (Ft. Myers, Fla./Dunbar), and are heavily involved with several other top in-state prospects.
In addition to Bronson, the Gators are hoping to add a few more wide receivers from this list, and there are several good ones to chose from. Artavis Scott (Tarpon Springs, Fla./East Lake) and Johnnie Dixon (Palm Beach, Fla./Dwyer) are two of the top prospects on Florida's wide receiver board, but Corey Holmes (Ft. Lauderdale, Fla./St. Thomas Aquinas), FSU commit Jake McCary (Miami/Coral Reef) and Trevion Thompson (Durham, N.C./Hillside) are also in the mix.
Quarterback Will Grier (Davidson, N.C./Davidson Day) might be Florida's top overall target for 2014. The talented signal-caller received an offer from Florida after camping in Gainesville this past summer. Florida offensive coordinator Brent Pease stopped by to check in on Grier earlier this week during Florida's bye.
Along the offensive line, the Gators are already in the lead for Garrett Brumfield (Baton Rouge, La./University Labaratory School) and are in contention for K.C. McDermott (Wellington, Fla./Palm Beach Central) and Mason Cole (Tarpon Springs, Fla./East Lake).
Defensively, Florida has already offered several out-of-state linemen prospects including Bryson Allen-Williams (Ellenwood, Ga./Cedar Grove), Da'Shawn Hand (Woodbridge, Va./Woodbridge), Andrew Williams (McDonough, Ga./Eagles Landing) and Gerald Willis III (New Orleans, La./Edna Karr). Allen-Williams, Williams and Willis all camped at Florida over the summer.
Defensive back Duke Dawson (Cross City, Fla./Dixie County) is only about 40 minutes from Gainesville and already has offers from FSU and Florida. The Gators have made an early impression on Dawson, and Florida appears to be the team to beat. Virginia Beach (Va.) Bayside safety Quin Blanding is probably Florida's top safety target for 2014, but the Gators appear to be a longshot at this point.
The Gators have offered outside linebacker Korie Rogers(Buford, Ga./Buford), who is one of the top linebackers on their recruiting board. Along the defensive line, the Gators have offered a scholarship to Demarcus Christmas (Bradenton, Fla./Manatee). He also has offers from Alabama, Auburn, Florida State, Miami, South Carolina, USF and others.
There is still a very long way to go until national signing day for 2014, but with the inroads Florida has made to this point, it appears the Gators could reel in another top 10 recruiting class.
3hSam Khan Jr. and Alex Scarborough