Image Credit: NJ.com
Not all commitments are the same. Not only was four-star defensive tackle Fred Hansard‘s pledge to the Florida Gators on Friday important for the program’s Class of 2017, it was also a spectacle.
Hansard committed through a special Bleacher Report video which included the Princeton, New Jersey, native riding a cab through New York City only to stop on a platform, hold up logo gloves and then move away from the camera so the Gators logo could shine bright in the sky like Batman’s bat signal.
Don’t believe me?
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) August 26, 2016
Anyway, Hansard is ranked No. 201 in the 2017 class per the 247Sports Composite. At 6-foot-3, 324 pounds, he’s the 11th-rated defensive tackle this cycle. He ultimately chose Florida over his hometown Rutgers and Tennessee.
Florida now has 15 commitments for 2017, including eight that are ranked as four-star prospects. The Gators have been a three-star heavy since head coach Jim McElwain took over, but they now seem to have that balance shifting in the proper direction at least recruiting-wise.
Hansard’s commitment comes at the end of a week which saw the decommitment and recommitment of four-star running back Adarius Lemons (Clearwater, FL), the second-best player in Florida’s recruiting class. According to reports and Lemons’s Twitter account, he believed an off-field issue would have jeopardized his standing with the Gators and chose to decommit, only to realize that was not the case, which led him to reaffirm his pledge.
Though Florida is still trying to add offensive talent, it is particularly good news that four of its top six commitments are on the defensive side of the ball with two defensive linemen and two defensive backs.