Florida Gators recruiting: Early Signing Period predictions, schedule, announcement times

By Adam Silverstein
December 19, 2017
Florida Gators recruiting: Early Signing Period predictions, schedule, announcement times

Image Credit: ESPN Images

With the first-ever Early Signing Period on Wednesday, one of the top stories nationally is whether Florida Gators head coach Dan Mullen will be able to close strong despite only being on the job a matter of weeks.

A week after losing its top-rated quarterback and following a rash of decommitments stemming from the departure of Jim McElwain and different needs from Mullen, Florida is ranked No. 30 in the 247Sports Composite team rankings. The Gators should have their sights set much higher than that on Wednesday and beyond.

With the day now here — the Early Signing Period actually extends out through 11:59 p.m. on Friday — all that matters is which prospects Florida is still a candidate to land and whether those players will ultimately pick the Gators.


Four-star quarterback Emory Jones (Franklin, GA): UF ramped up its pursuit of Jones once Mullen took over, despite already having four-star QB Matt Corral committed. It was clear that Mullen preferred Jones’ skill set to that of Corral, who flipped to Ole Miss. Now all Mullen has to do is close the deal. Mullen was the first coach to offer Jones — now the 40th ranked player in the nation — back when he was at MSU, but now that he has the Gator Head logo on the chest, it appears Jones is leaning toward backing off his Ohio State commitment and flipping. Jones visited Florida on Saturday and Florida State on Sunday. It is believed he will be choosing between the Gators and Noles.

Announcement time: 11:30 a.m.
Finalists: Florida, Florida State, Ohio State
Prediction: Florida | Confidence: 65 percent

Four-star defensive back Trey Dean (Hampton, GA): The Gators have been pushing for a decision from Dean, who Mullen and Co. previously recruited while at Mississippi State. Ranked 249th nationally, he would be a big-time addition to a Florida secondary that is talented but young and in need of depth with a couple more upperclassmen on the weay out.

Announcement time: 1:45 p.m.
Finalists: Florida, Kentucky, Alabama
Prediction: Florida | Confidence: 95 percent

Four-star wide receiver Malik Heath (Jackson, MS): A Mississippi State pledge since April, Heath has been recruited hard by Mullen but not given any indication that he plans on flipping from MSU to UF. Still, the 184th ranked player in the country has said that Florida made some strides into his recruitment. If Heath goes ahead and signs on Wednesday, it will likely be the Bulldogs. If he decides to extent his recruitment into January, that bodes well for the Gators’ chances as they would be able to get him on campus for a visit.

Announcement time: TBA
Finalists: Florida, Mississippi State
Prediction: Mississippi State | Confidence: 50 percent


Expected to sign Wednesday* | Thursday^

Jacob Copeland (69)
Emory Jones* (85)
Richard Gouraige (81)
Justin Watkins (89)
Kyle Pitts* (161)
Amari Burney* (177)
Trey Dean* (195)
Dameon Pierce* (201)
Andrew Chatfield (213)
David Reese* (296)
Iverson Clement*
Malik Langham
John Huggins*
Chris Bleich*
Randy Russell*
Dante Lang^
Evan McPherson*
Griffin McDowell
Noah Banks*

All rankings referenced in this story are via the 247Sports Composite

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