TWO BITS: Hamilton’s commitment, Tebow out

By Adam Silverstein
January 26, 2012

1 » One of two schools vying for the services of five-star defensive end Darius Hamilton (Ramsey, NJ), the Florida Gators were thought to be behind the Rutgers Scarlet Knights in contention for his commitment. The New Jersey boy was expected to stay in-state and play for Rutgers but his thoughts may be in the process of changing when it was reported Thursday morning that the Scarlet Knights’ head coach, Greg Schiano, is on his way to take the same job with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Hamilton has said that Florida and Rutgers were his final two and planned to make an announcement sometime before National Signing Day on Feb. 1. He was supposed to meet with Schiano on Wednesday, but it is unknown if that visit took place.

Should the Gators miss out on Hamilton and/or five-star athlete Josh Harvey-Clemons (Valdosta, GA), Florida could offer a scholarship to three-star DE Junior Gnonkonde (Lakeland, GA). According to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, UF has been calling about the former Georgia Tech commitment but will only have room for him in their class if they miss out on one or both of Hamilton and Harvey-Clemons.

2 » Originally scheduled to participate in the 2012 AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am, Denver Broncos quarterback Tim Tebow has been forced to withdraw from the event due to the multiple injuries he suffered against the New England Patriots in the second round of the NFL Playoffs. Though Tebow does not need surgery and is expected to make a full recovery, he will not be able to participate in the event from Feb. 9-12. An avid golfer, Tebow was undoubtedly looking forward to the event, and the tournament’s directors were certainly hoping he would be able to play as well.

Extra BIT » No. 5 Florida lacrosse will begin its 2012 campaign with an exhibition match Thursday against England at 6:30 p.m. The Gators are looking to build on consecutive impressive years and hope to win their first national championship in the program’s third season of existence.


  1. Elvis says:

    What I don’t get is the statement about UF “will only have room for him in their class if they miss out on one or both of Hamilton and Harvey-Clemons”???? Are you kidding me? If ware are really looking to sign 28 guys and are sitting at 20 right now, how it the world would we NOT have room? We are in on about 7-9 different guys left on our board, so they can’t honestly think we’re getting everyone one of those guys, do they?

    I think this plan blows up in our face. JUST OFFER THE GUY IF YOU WANT HIM! We are thin at LB and need all the help we can get. So if we get JHC then we all of a sudden are full at LB?!? Come on!

    Count me as one guy who hates the “we’ll offer you if someone else doesn’t come here” ploy. It rarely ever works out because the kid doesn’t feel any love AND even if you do get him, he may not be that good of a player if we didn’t go after him in the first place. I hope CM knows a lot more than we all do because with our scholarship numbers, we need at least 25 in this class, but most would prefer 28 and I don’t see that happening.

    • Not based on class size, based on players at that position. And that “we’ll offer you if someone else doesn’t come here” ploy worked for Kitchens and Westbrook and plenty of other players.

      • Ken (CA) says:

        That makes sense. I was hoping it meant that there were 4-5 silent commitments like Agholor that just hadn’t publicly announced yet so the class itself would be full.

    • Tractorr says:

      It seems to me that CWM handle different players in different ways. Case in point, the whole coaching staff has been up to see Diggs more than once while they are not giving that kind of attention to Algholor. My guess is not that they value Diggs more but that Diggs is the kind of recruit that wants the attention. He is talking to the media a bunch while Algholor is not. Diggs loves the spotlight while Algholor may be a more private person.

    • Tim G says:

      “We’ll have room for you if X player doesn’t commit” happens every year. If UF misses out on some recruits on NSD and spots open up, guess what, a player who wanted to be a Gator, but didn’t have room to join the class before, becomes one. These are basic, smart, normal recruiting practices.

    • gator says:

      Hey Evis,you need to leave the building and let the coaches take care of this

      • Elvis says:

        No kidding I’ll let the coaches take care of this. Theres nothing I can do about it. It’s just fun fodder to discuss. People can disagree all you want but if I’m a 18 yr old kid and someone tells me to wait for a “possible” phone call when I have schools that really want me and have wanted me from the get go, it would be a hard decision.

        I just hope “as a fan” that we have more of these “maybes” in the bag than we may know. We need to sign a FULL class and coming up short on numbers is not acceptable if you told kids we may not have any ships left and when you come crawling back they are gone. I know it works and coaches have been using this tactic for years, but that doesn’t mean I or any fan has to agree with it. If we had 23-24 guys already signed with all the possibilities out there then yes, I’d use that line but not when you’d like 7-8 more guys!

        Sorry, not leaving the building! Just enjoy the discussion and don’t get so worked up!

  2. Tractorr says:

    Had this happened a month ago I would have said not big deal, but they either will not have a coach by signing day or they may have to make a desperation hire in hopes of keeping the class together. Either way I bet this means that Hamilton is Florida bound.

  3. BKP says:

    @ Elvis, schools CANNOT sign more than 25 players per the new rules that were just put in place by the NCAA over the summer! So Muschamp is playing it safe and cool by keeping his number at 20 until he can secure that extra 5, all of which are high profile prospects aka 5 stars such as Diggs, Agholor, Hamilton, Howard, Harvey-Clemons, etc. All those guys will be making their decision on signing day. Know the rules dude, smh…….

    • Florida CAN sign more than 25, just can’t have more than 25 enroll in the fall. Six commits are already on campus. Gators want 27-28 in this class if possible.

      • Elvis says:

        Thanks Adam for “knowing the rules!” 🙂

        I guess not everyone is as smart as BKP!

        If you follow recruiting at all you’d know that Muschamp wuold prefer to sign 28 guys this year. The worst possible result on Feb. 1st is that we sign 22-23 guys because we held out hope for all these guys that we are fighting for. That’s why I say take the kid now if he wants to be a Gator. All I know is that if a school told me that they may or not offer me – and that I’d have to wait until signing day to find out – I’d probably say the heck with you. I’d like to know where I’m going before that and not have to wait on a 9:15 am phone call telling me I’m good or not. Gotta be careful in situations like that. I just hope Muschamp has a better feeling about all of the remaining guys than most people have because the chances of landing all of them are slim-to-none, but the chances of landing 1 or 2 is a lot more realistic.

  4. Jon says:

    Would you rather have Muschamp give someone this offer or take the SEC West route and Oversign. It may turn some kids off but you’ll find out if he really wants to be a Gator

  5. scooterp says:

    I’ve been following this pretty closely. Hamilton (himself) is really leaning Florida, his mother was getting in the way of him leaving his home state. Thats why the UV with his mother was so important and might have gone a long way to having him commit, if they came. Now that Schiano is out of the picture I think he went from a 60-40 lean to Rutgers to a 75-25 UF lean, this afternoon……… Chances to land JHC get slimmer by the day. Having his UGA/FSU OV after ours really hurt. He was 60-40 UF lean 2 weeks ago, now I think we’re a distant 3rd. Its a 40-40 toss up between the other two and maybe 20% for us. Young and Williams have pulled away – bot will go Auburn……. I think Fowler honestly does not know what he wants to do. Many feel a flip is going to occur, but ultimately he’ll stick with FSU. I think Howard – Diggs – Miles are the closest to a sure thing right now, but Diggs to OSU is a possibility – Urban can recruit. Some say Auburn for Diggs – no way. I don’t think there is any possibility that happens – he’s all Gator right now……. as far as Agholor goes he’s 50-50 right now with UF/USC, but making this weekend his OV out west, I just feel the great snake oil salesman himself will find away to land him. I think we finish with 6 more – Howard, Diggs, Hamilton, Miles a QB and one more under the radar. Can’t wait for next Wednesday to get here.

    • Elvis says:

      I agree with you scooterp. Although it was good that Muschamp got to visit JHC today after Richt had his exciting evening going to church and jail with him! I think he’d like to come to UF, but how often do we actual pull GA kids away from UGA – not very often.

      I would agree on your final total being around 25-26. If we end up with Howard, Diggs, Hamilton, Miles, a QB and someone else I think it’s one heck of a class. I’d like to get another OL in there if possible. If we turn Fowler or pickup NA or Young then it would be an outstanding class and probably ranked #1 (or #2 at the worst). I know it’s not about the rankings, but about filling our needs and if we can get 3 OL and some stud WR’s then I think we’ve hit the 2 biggest needs.

      Good think Hamilton just said he’s sticking with his Jan 31st announcment. That’s good. It sounds like he’s made up his mind…regardless of the situation at Rutgers. That can be a good a bad thing. If he’s Rutgers no matter the coach or he could of been UF all along and this just sealed the deal. Not sure how to read that one. I figured he’d come out and say that he was going to wait and see what happened at Rutgers before deciding. A little surprised on that front.

      Hamilton would be a huge pickup for us! And I remember reading his mom’s tweets when she was here in G-ville and she sounded like she was having a good time. She was hitting it off with some of the other parents there.

      • Elvis says:

        my bad…I might have been thinking about Diggs mom. Sorry. Not every day a recruits mother comes by herself!

      • Ken (CA) says:

        Seriously? That is one of the biggest complaints that UGA fans have had with Richt over the past 10 years. He has ad an incredibly difficult time getting the hometown kids, we get 2-3 at least virtually every year, some of our top players.

        • Elvis says:

          Are you saying that UF gets 2-3 hometown kids every year or that we steal 2-3 kids from UGA?

          If you are talking about Florida kids, we’ve let a ton of top kids go out of state every year. We get a few Florida kids, but the pool is much greater than GA. I’m sick of watching some of the biggest names in the state play elsewhere – in FL or out of FL.

          If you are talking about GA kids we are stealing then I’m not sure who you are talking about. Including this years class we have possibly one starter from GA (Hunter). We’ve signed Pridemore, Ball, Brown, Taylor and the 2 kids in this class in the past 5 years. Not sure that qualifies as some of our top players.

          Could you clarify the statement?

  6. gator says:

    Those would be some great bookends,Bullard and Hamilton.

  7. DGLBkGATOR FAN says:

    The whole “we’ll offer you if someone else doesn’t come here” is nothing new not sure why any1 has an issue. If muschamp offered and accepted every one – three star player that will jump at a UF offer he will be getting killed for a class full of “bad recruits”and where are the four and five star guys.

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