Florida Gators football recruiting: Early National Signing Day 2023 predictions, preview

By OnlyGators.com Staff
December 20, 2022
Florida Gators football recruiting: Early National Signing Day 2023 predictions, preview

Image Credit: Hannah White, UAA

With the early signing period beginning Wednesday with the first National Signing Day for the 2023 cycle, the Florida Gators’ class is largely completed. Head coach Billy Napier put together a notably strong close just weeks into his tenure one year ago at this time, but on the surface, it does not seem like a similarly exciting Wednesday is ahead for the Gators.

In fact, it’s entirely possible Florida loses more players from its class than it adds before the early signing period concludes. And as noted below, its top remaining targets are actually announcing Thursday.

The Gators undoubtedly have a strong class. In fact, the average talent rating of their commitments in the 247Sports Composite is their highest since the last time Florida brought in a No. 1 overall class (2010). That should not be overlooked: Napier is adding blue-chip prospects.

However, the Gators will likely enter signing day sitting No. 11 in the 247Sports Composite team rankings with hardly any room to move up as most of their top remaining targets are projected elsewhere. Napier being unable to close strong would undoubtedly be a disappointment given recruiting was the one area in which he — and his army of a staff — was expected to excel immediately in Year 1.

The gap between Florida and the No. 8 overall class is thin, and if one or two recruitments had gone the Gators’ way, they might be knocking on the door of a top-five class. Unfortunately, that’s just not the case as the early signing period is about to begin.

Let’s take a look at what’s ahead for Florida on National Signing Day.

Headed elsewhere?

Four-star EDGE Isaiah Nixon (No. 267 overall): Florida flipped Nixon from UCF back in June as he proclaimed his desire to play in the SEC and specifically for UF. However, as signing day approaches, there are murmurs that Nixon may not wind up in the class and instead head back to the Knights. Whether it is a mutual parting or player-only choice is immaterial as the Gators are extremely thin at the position, which was supposed to be one of its top concentrations in the class.

Four-star WR Andy Jean (No. 357 overall): Jean visited Florida State over the weekend while Florida was playing in the Las Vegas Bowl, and there is some belief that he may ultimately wind up flipping to the Seminoles. A better prospect than his rating suggests, Jean has been … a bit of an odd bird during his recruitment with few being able to get a handle on his intentions. It is hardly a sure thing that he will move to FSU during the process, especially as some believe it wants him to play cornerback instead of wide receiver, but it’s certainly a possibility.

Even if Florida was to lose both Nixon and Jean, it would remain No. 11 in the 247Sports Composite team rankings. However, a couple programs could potentially jump it Wednesday as signing day plays out.

Flip incoming?

Four-star TE Jaden Platt (No. 230 overall): Presently committed to Stanford, Platt appears to be ready to move to the SEC instead with a choice lingering between Florida and Texas A&M. Tight end is a massive position of need for the Gators, and though Platt took his final official visit to TAMU last weekend (after officially visiting UF the weekend prior), this does seem to be a toss-up.

Announcement time: Platt committed to Texas A&M on Tuesday
Finalists: Florida, Texas A&M, Stanford
Prediction: Florida | Confidence: 40%

The Gators would move into the top 10 if Platt committed.


Five-star CB Desmond Ricks (No. 23 overall): Florida’s top remaining target, Ricks may be even better than five-star CB Cormani McClain, who spurned UF for Miami during the season. The problem is Florida had to play catch-up on his recruitment after he reclassified to 2023. LSU has long been seen as the leader for his services, but Ricks has been radio silent as of late. The Gators hired CB coach Corey Raymond from the Tigers to win battles exactly like this, and while this may be an optimistic — and perhaps not realistic — prediction, the gut says this one may goes Florida’s way.

Announcement time: Thursday, 5:30 p.m.
Finalists: Florida, Alabama, LSU
Prediction: Florida | Confidence: 33%

The Gators would guarantee themselves a top-10 class if Ricks committed.

Four-star DL Jordan Hall (No. 73 overall): Though the Gators have constantly been a contender for Hall, it seems like they have been fighting an uphill battle from the start with Georgia being the constant presence and other contenders moving in and out among the top of his list.

Announcement time: Thursday, 2:30 p.m.
Finalists: Florida, Alabama, Georgia, LSU
Prediction: Georgia | Confidence: 70%


Kelby Collins (44)
Ja'Keem Jackson (60)
Aidan Mizell (102)
Eugene Wilson (110)
Dijon Johnson (114)
Roderick Kearney (116)
Kamran James (168)
Will Norman (192)
Jordan Castell (208)
Sharif Denson (220)
TJ Searcy (257)
Gavin Hill
Aaron Gates
Treyaun Webb
Andy Jean
Bryce Thornton
Jaden Robinson
Caden Jones
Knijeah Harris
Bryce Lovett

All rankings via 247Sports Composite

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