Florida Gators recruits and targets to watch up to and on 2013 National Signing Day

Updated Tuesday, Feb. 5 at 5 p.m.

Twenty-six members strong, the Florida Gators’ 2013 recruiting class is hoping to expand by a few names over the next week when the vast majority of uncommitted high school football players across the country announce their decisions leading up to and on National Signing Day on Wednesday, Feb. 6.

Be sure to visit OGGOA’s live coverage of National Signing Day beginning Wednesday morning at 7 a.m. It will feature a live chat and will be constantly updated throughout the day with every signed National Letter of Intent (NLI) and new commitment.

Below OGGOA breaks down who the Gators are still waiting to hear from, when they may learn of their decision and some of the latest insights on each player.

Special thanks to InsidetheGators.com recruiting analyst Blake Alderman for his assistance on some of the finer details below.

Defensive tackle Jay-nard Bostwick (Port St. Lucie, FL)
Accolades: Rivals – No. 25 DT | ESPN – No. 286 overall (No. 27 DT)
Leaders: Florida, Miami
Contenders: Alabama
Skinny: Supposedly undecided between his final three schools (listed above), Bostwick spent his final weekend before signing day on campus in Gainesville, FL for an official visit. His decision is expected to come down to Florida or Miami and many recruiting analysts believe the Gators will get the nod when all is said and done.
Announcement: National Signing Day – 8 a.m.

Wide receiver James Clark (New Smyrna Beach, FL)
Accolades: Rivals – No. 45 WR | ESPN – No. 49 WR
Leaders: Florida, Clemson, Ohio State
Contenders: Nebraska, Northwestern
Skinny: Clark has a tough decision to make with all three of his leaders making a major push for his services over the last few weeks. Though the Gators landed four-star WR Demarcus Robinson (Fort Valley, GA) in early January, UF has stayed on top of Clark and let him know that they could very much use a sixth wide receiver in the recruiting class. He has never taken an official visit to Florida but has been on campus previously and took an official visit to the school on Saturday.
Announcement: National Signing Day – 9 a.m.

Continue Reading » Florida Gators recruits and targets to watch up to and on 2013 National Signing Day

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Florida parts ways with 2013 LB James Hearns

Long-time 2013 linebacker commitment James Hearns (Tallahassee, FL) and the Florida Gators officially parted ways on Thursday.

According to InsidetheGators.com’s Blake Alderman, Hearns and Florida decided an amicable split would be best for both parties as the player’s grades and ability to eventually qualify for admission were a continued concern for the school.

Hearns, who originally committed to the Gators on Feb. 2, 2012 as the team’s fourth 2013 pledge, is a unanimous four-star prospect who Rivals ranks as the 197th-best player in the nation.

At the time of his Florida pledge, Hearns boasted an impressive offer list that included teams like Alabama, Florida State, Georgia and LSU. Due to academic concerns, his list of potential destinations will be much more limited this time around.

Though losing a player of Hearns’s talent is not a positive for any recruiting class, the Gators have four other linebackers already committed for 2013 including five-star Alex Anzalone (Wyomissing, PA), four-star Daniel McMillian (Jacksonville, FL), four-star Matt Rolin (Ashburn, VA) and three-star Jarrad Davis (Kingsland, GA).

Landing Anzalone as an early enrollee came as a surprise for Florida, meaning Herans’s departure is even less impactful in the long run. The Gators are also still involved in the recruitment of four-star Quinton Powell (Daytona Beach, FL), who is set to decide on National Signing Day between UF or USC.

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Florida adds pledge from LB Jarrad Davis

The Florida Gators’ 2013 recruiting class is seemingly growing by the day with the team reportedly adding yet another prized commitment on Saturday from three-star linebacker Jarrad Davis (Kingsland, GA).

Jeff Herron, Davis’s head coach at Camden County High School, confirmed to 247 Sports (which first reported the pledge) that the player had decided to flip from Auburn to Florida after being extended an offer this week.

The Gators found a spot open in their recruiting class after four-star LB Quinton Powell (Daytona Beach, FL) decommitted on Monday. The coaching staff stopped by Davis’s house this week and gave him a scholarship offer shortly thereafter.

Florida has added five commitments and lost one since Dec. 9.

Three players – four-star LB Matt Rolin (Ashburn, VA) and three-star offensive linemen Roderick Johnson (Delray Beach, FL) and JUCO player Trenton Brown (Milledgeville, GA) – joined the team on Sunday.

Two days after Powell’s decommitment, on Wednesday, four-star wide receiver Demarcus Robinson (Fort Valley, GA) pledged to play for the Gators.

Of Florida’s five recent commitments, three were previously committed elsewhere – Rolin (South Carolina), Robinson (Clemson) and Davis (Auburn).

The Gators now have 26 total pledges including 25 that count as members of the 2013 recruiting class.

Davis joins Rolin and four-stars James Hearns (Tallahassee, FL) and Daniel McMillian (Jacksonville, FL) as linebackers committed in this class.

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Florida loses pledge from LB Quinton Powell

Just one day after four-star linebacker Matt Rolin (Ashburn, VA) committed to play for the Florida Gators in 2013, fellow four-star LB Quinton Powell (Daytona Beach, FL) chose to rescind his pledge and officially reopen his recruitment.

“Yes I Decommited from Florida,” Powell wrote Monday on Facebook, “nothing against the program just needed to re-evaluate my choices.”

One of the earliest members of Florida’s 2013 class, Powell was one of six players to commit to the program on Feb. 18 at Junior Day in Gainesville, FL.

At the time, he picked the Gators over Clemson, Florida State, Miami, Ohio State and South Carolina. He is now considering USC, Miami and Oregon, according to FOX Sports NEXT reporter Amy Campbell, who first confirmed his decision.

Considered the 207th best player in the country by Rivals and ranked 80th nationally by ESPN, Powell had just visited Florida last weekend and reportedly came away from his visit quite pleased with his experience.

Whether Rolin’s commitment has anything to do with Powell’s decision remains to be seen. Either way, the Gators’ impressive linebacker class – which featured a four-pack of four-star players – has certainly taken a hit for the time being.

Three of the six players that committed to Florida on Feb. 18 – Powell, four-star wide receiver Rodney Adams (St. Petersburg, FL) and three-star LB Dillan Lawson (Crestview, FL) – have since withdrawn their pledges.

The Gators added three commitments on Sunday but now have 24 total pledges including 23 that count as members of the 2013 recruiting class.

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Gators add commitment from LB Matt Rolin

Just hours after the Florida Gators received a pledge from junior college offensive lineman Trenton Brown (Milledgeville, GA), the team added another 2013 commitment from four-star linebacker Matt Rolin (Ashburn, VA).

Long rumored to be considering a switch to the Gators, Rolin announced Sunday on Twitter that he decided to decommit from South Carolina and commit to Florida.

“Going back on my word is something I never imagined myself doing and it hurts me to do it, bu in end I have to do what’s best for me,” he wrote. “That being said. I would like to let everyone know that I have decommitted from The University of South Carolina. I would like to thank the Carolina coaches an fans for all the support and hope you understand that I prayed about this an it’s best for me.

“I have officially committed to THE University of #Florida. I will be wearing #9 as I continue to chase my dreams at #Florida #GatorNation”

Rolin originally committed to the Gamecocks on May 25 but got a hard sell from the Gators in late November when he was visited by linebackers coach D.J. Durkin just two days before he went on his official visit to Florida. He paid an unofficial visit to South Carolina last week and apparently made his mind up this weekend.

Rolin is officially the 23rd member of Florida’s 2013 class and the 24th new player that will join the program before next season. He is the fourth linebacker to commit to the Gators for 2013, joining fellow four-star pledges James Hearns (Tallahassee, FL), Daniel McMillian (Jacksonville, FL) and Quinton Powell (Daytona Beach, FL).

He is ranked No. 76 on the ESPN 150 but is not listed on the Rivals250. Rolin’s commitment has since been confirmed by Rivals.

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13 Gators commits in fourth Rivals250 for 2013

Released Tuesday afternoon, the fourth edition of the Rivals250 for the class of 2013 is filled with players verbally committed to play for the Florida Gators next season. Though five Florida commits are part of the top 100 players in the group (which was released Tuesday), eight more are listed among the top 250 recruits in the nation.

Below is a breakdown of where the Gators’ commits are ranked:

9 2 – DB Vernon Hargreaves (Tampa, FL)
36 11 – RB Kelvin Taylor (Belle Glade, FL)
57 8 – DB Marcell Harris* (Orlando, FL)
81 27 – DB Keanu Neal (Bushnell, FL)
93 11 – LB Daniel McMillian (Jacksonville, FL)
101 8 – WR Alvin Bailey* (Seffner, FL)
103 13 – DT Caleb Brantley (Crescent City, FL)
117 31 – WR Ahmad Fulwood (Jacksonville, FL)
128 10 – DB Nick Washington (Jacksonville, FL)
193 NR – DE Joey Ivie (Dade City, FL)
195 12 – LB James Hearns (Tallahassee, FL)
207 8 – LB Quinton Powell (Daytona Beach, FL)
218 108 – DE Jordan Sherit (Tampa, FL)

* New commitment since last update.

Florida’s 2013 commitments as of Dec. 4, 2012:
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10 Gators commits in third Rivals250 for 2013

Released Tuesday afternoon, the third edition of the Rivals250 for the class of 2013 is filled with players verbally committed to play for the Florida Gators next season. Though five Florida commits are part of the top 100 players in the group (which was released Tuesday), five more are listed among the top 250 recruits in the nation.

Below is a breakdown of where the Gators’ commits are ranked:

7 2 – DB Vernon Hargreaves* (Tampa, FL)
47 45 – RB Kelvin Taylor (Belle Glade, FL)
82 16 – LB Daniel McMillian (Jacksonville, FL)
86 17 – WR Ahmad Fulwood (Jacksonville, FL)
90 19 – DT Caleb Brantley (Crescent City, FL)
108 142 – DB Keanu Neal (Bushnell, FL)
110 16 – DE Jordan Sherit* (Tampa, FL)
118 19 – DB Nick Washington (Jacksonville, FL)
183 9 – LB James Hearns (Tallahassee, FL)
199 26 – LB Quinton Powell (Daytona Beach, FL)

* Added to list.

Florida’s 2013 commitments as of August 21, 2012:
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Eleven Gators placed in first ESPN 300 for 2013

Released Wednesday afternoon, the first edition of the ESPN 300 for the class of 2013 is filled with players verbally committed to play for the Florida Gators next season. Though seven Florida commits are part of the top 150 players in the group, four more are listed among the top 300 recruits in the nation.

Below is a breakdown of where the Gators’ commits are ranked:

21 1 – RB Kelvin Taylor (Belle Glade, FL)
31 13 – DT Caleb Brantley (Crescent City, FL)
41 3 – LB Daniel McMillian (Jacksonville, FL)
48 4 – WR Ahmad Fulwood (Jacksonville, FL)
65 1 – DB Keanu Neal (Bushnell, FL)
83 26 – LB Quinton Powell (Daytona Beach, FL)
131 73 – DB Nick Washington (Jacksonville, FL)
166 * – RB Adam Lane (Winter Haven, FL)
204 * – WR Marqui Hawkins (Columbus, GA)
269 * – LB James Hearns (Tallahassee, FL)
279 * – LB Dillan Lawson (Crestview, FL)

* Added to list.

Florida’s 2013 commitments:
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