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August 6, 2013
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Thanks to gaining two new pledges in the month of July, Florida's commitment list for the class of 2014 is beginning to fill up. Due, in part, to signing a bigger than anticipated class last year, the Gators are looking to sign anywhere from 21-22 (unless there is once again an abnormal amount of attrition) this time around. With 12 commitments already on board, that leaves but 10 or so remaining slots.
Now that Florida has at least halfway met their needs at a couple of key positions, most notably cornerback, the question is - at which positions will those final 10 openings be utilized?
It is hard to say.
That isn't a dodge.
With Florida's talent level increasing significantly across the board over the last couple of signing classes, the Gators are in an enviable position of being able to take the best available prospects rather than 'drafting for need' so to speak.
Then of course, there is the unknown. There are simply too many variables at play to say that the final number will absolutely be 21-22. Last year, at this time, no one thought Florida would in a position to take 30 plus signees. The same holds true this time around. With six months to go until Signing Day, it is unknown if there will be any further transfers, career ending injuries, players changing positions, players leaving early, etc...
Though there are multiple offers out according to the database and UF is keeping in contact with a multitude of players, because there are only so many slots remaining, the number of players UF is very actively recruiting isn't that large. The number on the board is dwindling for now, but could expand once the season begins and players begin to emerge.
So with that in mind ITG will attempt to break down how the final ten or so slots will be distributed as of today.
Committed: Will Grier (6-2, 177) Davidson, N.C.
Ones to watch: None
The Skinny: The Gators were lucky in the 2014 cycle at the quarterback position getting a talent like Grier to jump onboard the boat early. With a top tier signal caller already solid in his commitment, it is likely that the Gators use their limited scholarships elsewhere. Grier is one of the most solid commitments in UF's current class and has been working on helping to add some offensive skill players to the class as well.
Committed: Dalvin Cook (5-11, 192) Miami, Fla.
Ones to watch: Bo Scarbrough (Bradenton, Fla.) / Tony James (Gainesville, Fla.) / Joe Mixon (Oakley, Cali.)
The Skinny: With Florida already having a commitment from one of the top speedsters in the Class of 2014, right now the Gators really don't need any other running backs, but are still keeping tabs on a few. The Gators seem to be a sleeper team for five-star Mixon, as he will officially visit UF for the Tennessee game. However, you have to feel as though with Cook already in the fold, it will be Scarbrough (who is transferring to a Florida high school) or bust remaining at the position.
Ones to watch: Ermon Lane (Homestead, Fla.) / Travis Rudolph (West Palm Beach, Fla.) / KD Cannon (Mount Pleasure, Tx) / Josh Malone (Gallatin, Tenn.)
The Skinny: With the Gators signing a stellar five man wide receiver class in the last recruiting cycle, they really don't have a huge need this time around. That doesn't mean that they won't still try to take a difference maker or two, but wide out isn't a huge priority. Having said that, the Gators would love to add at least one of the "big time playmakers" remaining on the board, but quality is more important than quantity this time around. At this time it seems UF is in the best shape for four-stars Lane and Rudolph.
Committed: C'Yontai Lewis (6-5, 212) Tuscaloosa, Ala.
Ones to watch: Deandre Goolsby (Derby, Kan.) / Moral Stephens (Perry, Fla.) / Josh McNeil (Yuma, Az.)
The Skinny: At this point it seems that Goolsby is the Gators leading candidate for tight end, with his big size and athleticism. However, though UF is in his top four, there is some ground that needs to be made up. Enter JUCO tight end McNeil. If his academics are in order (he attended prep school last year and JUCO this year), he is one to keep an eye on as the second player at this position.
Committed: Travaris Dorsey (6-3, 314) Jacksonville, Fla. / Benjamin Knox (6-6, 259) DeLand, Fla. / Dontae Angus (6-6, 330) Philadelphia, Pa. / Joseph Paul (6-4, 340) New Orleans, La.
Ones to watch: Damian Prince (Forestville, Md.) / David Sharpe (Jacksonville, Fla.) / Trevor Darling (Miami, Fla.) / Nolan Kelleher (Mount Pleasure, S.C) / Andrew Shofner (Woodberry Forrest, Va.)
The Skinny: Don't take the 'needs' above to mean that Florida will take 5-6 offensive linemen in this class. While the Gators have four offensive linemen currently committed, one or two might not be on the commitment list down the road. Even with four big bodies committed the Gators spent quite a bit of time scouting offensive linemen around the country over the spring. Of those who currently have offers, Florida is in the best shape with Sharpe.
Watch for the Defensive Breakdown on Wednesday.