Gators five-star commit Matt Elam is solid

By Adam Silverstein
October 7, 2009

Much has been made over the last week about prized Florida Gators commitment, five-star safety/athlete Matt Elam of Dwyer, wavering on his desire to attend the University of Florida this spring. A source close to Elam told OGGOA early Wednesday that his commitment to the Gators is solid, regardless of what he is telling reporters. Elam is simply doing his due diligence and taking his official visits before signing at the deadline to enroll early in the spring.

Nevertheless, Elam’s comments over the past week have ruffled the feathers of some Florida coaches and players, who have taken it upon themselves to indirectly answer some of the questions that were brought up. Chief among those is the contention that increased positional depth in the secondary will inhibit young players from getting playing time as freshmen.

[Read Florida’s responses after the jump…]

Safeties coach Chuck Heater, speaking generally and not directly to Elam, told Rivals that the Gators have had a “pretty good track record of playing young players,” pointing out that cornerbacks Joe Haden and Janoris Jenkins and safety Will Hill all saw the field as true freshman and “played really well.”

To the talk that getting on the field as a freshman at Florida is difficult, Heater believes, “It’s obviously fueled by others, and they don’t understand the magnitude of what that means. The biggest problem is not us or anyone else, it’s are they ready? That’s what they don’t understand. They don’t understand that jump could be pretty significant. If they’re ready nobody has enough guys.”

Added Haden, “Everybody [on the Gators] was the best in their state at that position; so just knowing you have to work hard every single day to get that much better. It’s not just talent. It’s work ethic and knowing the plays and worrying about more than athletic ability. If you really think somebody’s going to give something to you, then you don’t deserve to be here at all.”

Photo Credit: Jim Rassol, Sun-Sentinel


  1. Gatormiami says:

    If you don’t have confidence in your ability, you should not attend a top school like Florida. Go to Tennessee or Miami or FSU where they’ll guarantee ?? you playing time as a Frosh. They might be lying, but probably not. You probably can play for a second-rate program & don’t have to work hard to improve & get ready to play on Sunday. Uf will send a dozen or more to NFL in 2010….

  2. Daniel M. says:

    This kid is as Gator as it gets. Of course he’s going to spread the love around a little bit. There are all kinds of fun free trips on the line.

  3. Pingback: '10 FL ATH Matt Elam - Page 52 - VolNation

  4. ReptilesRule says:

    Now this sounds more like the Matt that I have read about during his recruitment. Some of the other stuff I was starting to read was a bit disturbing and ego driven and didn’t sound right. One thing about the Florida coaches is that if you have talent, are willing to work hard and play with passion, they will find a way to get you on the field ala Will Hill. You have to know that the coaches believe in Matt Elam and his talent or Urban himself would not be recruiting him. Stick with your commitment Matt, and come get your ring(s).

  5. I was happy to hear this when I spoke with my source this morning. That person has remained steadfast that Elam is committed no matter what he says for months, but hearing it again today was nice confirmation.

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