NCF On The Trail: Florida recruiting

ESPN 300 OLB sees fit in Athens 

June, 28, 2013
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ATHENS, Ga. -- Christian Miller (Columbia, S.C./Spring Valley), the nation’s No. 2 outside linebacker, was in Athens on Wednesday, talking with Mark Richt and Kirk Olivadotti. Miller liked what he heard. In fact, he left campus thinking he could easily see himself suiting up for the Bulldogs.

Junior offensive tackle David Sharpe has not been thinking about football lately. Leading up to Thursday night’s Florida Class AAA basketball championship between his Providence High School Stallions and the Coral Springs Christian Crusaders, the talented two-sport athlete has let his coach field all of his football recruiting calls. And there have been a lot of them.


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Juco DT Reed signs with UF

February, 6, 2013
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Junior college defensive tackle Jarran Reed (Goldsboro, N.C./East Mississippi CC) has signed his letter of intent to play football at the University of Florida.

The 6-foot-4, 305-pound lineman chose Florida over Alabama.

Reed, who previously had been committed to Ole Miss before officially decommitting last Thursday, joins two other defensive tackles in Florida's class: commit Caleb Brantley and early enrollee Darious Cummings.

Reed, Cummings and Florida defensive tackle Damien Jacobs all attended EMCC.
Defensive tackle Jay-nard Bostwick (Port Saint Lucie, Fla./Centennial) joined Florida's No. 1-ranked recruiting class on Wednesday morning, making the announcement in a ceremony at his high school. Bostwick picked the Gators over Alabama and Miami.

He is the 27th-ranked player nationally at his position and 286th in the ESPN 300.

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Nick Washington TweetChat 

February, 5, 2013
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GAINESVILLE, Fla. -- Florida defensive back commitment Nick Washington took some time this weekend to respond to questions from Florida fans that were submitted on Twitter using the #AskNW hashtag. Nick's answer's were not altered in anyway. If you have more questions for Nick, feel free to send him a message on Twitter: @NickWashingtonn.


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SEC shows more interest in Todd Kelly Jr. 

January, 25, 2013
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Despite being one of the top programs in the nation, LSU still has some work to do to land one of the top junior prospects in the south.

Coaches from LSU visited Todd Kelly Jr. this week. However, the Watch List prospect from Knoxville (Tenn.) Webb said he's primarily focusing on his top ten finalists.


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Robinson can boost UF immediately 

January, 7, 2013
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The commitment of Demarcus Robinson (Fort Valley, Ga./Peach County) on Monday is huge for the Gators. At 6-foot-2, 200-pounds, Robinson has the size and athleticism that will allow him to compete for playing time early.

Robinson is the only one of Florida's five WR commits slated to enroll early. If he follows through with his plan, the U.S. Army All-American has a chance to earn a starting spot early in his career.

Quinton Dunbar led all Florida receivers with just 306 receiving yards. After Dunbar, Andre Debose stands second among returning receivers with two receptions for 11 yards. Florida needs production from its wideouts and needs it now.

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LB Trey Johnson chooses Ohio State

January, 4, 2013
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ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- For months, Ohio State coach Urban Meyer and his staff have made the No. 2 inside linebacker prospect in the country a recruiting priority.

Their patience paid off tonight when Trey Johnson (Lawrenceville, Ga./Central Gwinnett) committed to Ohio State during the Under Armour All-America Game, live on ESPN.

Johnson chose Ohio State over Florida and Tennessee.

A longtime Auburn Tigers commitment, Johnson happened to be returning from his official visit to Ohio State on Nov. 25 when Auburn fired coach Gene Chizik. That time on the Columbus, Ohio, campus helped the No. 2 inside linebacker get a better feel for the Buckeyes.

“When I took a visit up there it was different,” said Johnson, a starter in the UA Game. “I kind of like the feel up there, the depth chart. And there are many factors that make it a good fit there.”

The addition of Johnson gives Ohio State 20 commitments, nine of those being members of the ESPN 150, and boosts what is already the No. 4 recruiting class in the ESPN rankings.

Johnson, who made 140 tackles, three sacks, and one interception as a senior, is the first linebacker commitment for the Buckeyes in the 2013 class. They are still working to add linebacker and ESPN 150 prospect Mike Mitchell (Plano, Texas/Prestonwood Christian Academy), and are in the mix for another standout in the Peach State, Under Armour All-American safety Vonn Bell (Rossville, Ga./Ridgeland).

DE Ogundeko commits to Clemson

January, 4, 2013
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ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- ESPN 150 defensive lineman Ebenezer Ogundeko (Brooklyn, N.Y./Thomas Jefferson) has verbally committed to Clemson. The 6-foot-3, 229-pound end prospect announced his decision during the second quarter of tonight's Under Armour All-America Game.

Ogundeko chose Clemson over Syracuse, Florida and Notre Dame.

With the addition of Ogundeko, the Tigers now have 16 verbal commitments, including four who are ESPN 150 prospects. Ogundeko will join Dane Rogers (Shelby, N.C./Crest), Clemson's other defensive end commitment. Clemson’s recruiting class is ranked No. 14 in the country.

As a senior, Ogundeko totaled an impressive 74 tackles including 17 sacks. He is the nation’s No. 10 defensive end.

Ogundeko also held offers from Alabama, Arizona State and Ole Miss.

Ole Miss leads for Robert Nkemdiche 

January, 2, 2013
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LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. –- On Day 3 of practice for the Under Armour All-America Game at Disney’s ESPN Wide World of Sports, No. 1 prospect Robert Nkemdiche (Loganville, Ga./Grayson) finally confirmed what has been speculated around the recruiting world for months.


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4-star DT Brantley decommits from UF 

January, 2, 2013
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LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- Four-star defensive tackle Caleb Brantley (Crescent City, Fla./Crescent City) decommitted from Florida after the Under Armour All-America Game practice on Wednesday. The 6-foot-4, 305-pound athlete announced his decision via Twitter and later confirmed with ESPN.com.


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4-star DE Daniel visiting Florida 

December, 30, 2012
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LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- ESPN 150 defensive end Elijah Daniel (Avon, Ind./Avon) recently visited Ole Miss. The 6-foot-3, 249-pound athlete said he was impressed with the Rebels had to offer.


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Hargreaves ready to get reacquainted 

December, 30, 2012
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LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- With a strong performance at the Under Armour All-America Game this week, five-star defensive back Vernon Hargreaves III (Tampa, Fla./Wharton) would have an opportunity to earn the top overall ranking in the ESPN 150.


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2014 QB Will Grier commits to UF

December, 19, 2012
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Will Grier is letting social media and his father do the talking.

The ESPN Watch List quarterback from Davidson (N.C.) Day announced he was committed to Florida via Twitter and Facebook on Wednesday afternoon. Then, his father, Chad Grier, sent an email to several media outlets.

"I am very proud to let you know that Will Grier has chosen to continue his education and football career at the University of Florida!" the email read. "Will is blessed to have this opportunity and feels so strongly about it that he is ready to commit now so he can focus on his schoolwork, improving his game and helping his team prepare for a third consecutive state championship next year."

Grier completed 324 of 414 pass attempts for 5,785 yards and 69 touchdowns with just six interceptions this year. He also ran for 813 yards and eight touchdowns on 95 carries. He was named the Gatorade player of the year in North Carolina.

The junior showed his emotions through his social-media accounts.

"I'm a gator!!" he said via Facebook. "My future is in Gainesville and I couldn't be happier. I can't thank my family and true friends enough for their support. I love all of you!! Go Gators!!!"

On Twitter, he said: "I am committed to the university of Florida!! If you ain't a gator your gator bait!!"

Grier's commitment is the third for the Gators 2014 class. He was also considering North Carolina, North Carolina State and Tennessee and Oregon. Florida, however, seemed to be the leader for weeks. Grier visited Gainesville a handful of times and showed strong interest in the school. Both Griers spoke glowingly about Florida head coach Will Muschamp and offensive coordinator Brent Pease.

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Watch List QB Grier ready to commit 

December, 18, 2012
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Junior quarterback Will Grier is set to announce his college decision.

The signal-caller from Davidson (N.C.) Day said Tuesday that he is primarily considering Florida, North Carolina, North Carolina State and Tennessee. He said he will publicly commit to his chosen school Wednesday night.

The battle for the ESPN Watch List prospect has been intense. North Carolina has placed a premium on landing the 6-foot-3, 185-pound prospect, and understandably so. He would be a good fit in the Tar Heels' spread offense and figures to be one of the top prospects in North Carolina for the 2014 class.

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