This year’s class of signees
Once again I will break the class down by position and give a star ranking of each recruit.
QB: Jordan Reed – New London, CT.
#142 on the ESPN 150
Has the same build as Cam Newton, but is more equipped to be a pocket passer than Newton. Strong arm with a quick release. When he sets his feet has a big arm and great accuracy. Is capable of moving within the pocket and becoming a running threat. His size obviously makes him difficult to bring down when he is outside of the pocket. Still raw, needs to improve his throwing mechanics and willing to improve.
The one that got away – Denard Robinson – Deerfield Beach, FL. While it was clear that there was no way that Robinson would ever see the field as a true QB - his throwing motion is similar to Vince Young’s (read horrific) – Robinson is an exceptional athlete and would have slid nicely into a slot receiver role next year. In the end Robinson signed with Michigan and will be given an opportunity to be RichRod’s Pat White in Ann Arbor.
RB: Mike Gillislee – DeLand, FL
#129 on the ESPN 150
More of an athlete than a true RB, since he is more of an outside threat than a between the tackles runner. Dangerous and elusive in the open field, although he does have a deceptively strong lower body. Once he gets the corner, he has that “second gear” to separate from defenders. Has the frame to hold additional weight and could develop into a slashing back. Keeping in line with the current RBs on the Florida roster, possesses excellent hands and receiving skills. Will afford the OC the ability to take advantage of potential mismatches with his versatility.
The one that got away – Trent Richardson – Pensacola, FL. Committed to Alabama early in the process and then toyed with the idea of moving to another school. In the end Richardson stayed with the Tide. Richardson has the ability to be that back that Coach Meyer hasn’t been able to land since his arrival at Florida. Richardson ending up in Tuscaloosa might not be a bad thing, since it has come out that Richardson has at least two children under the age of two and more baggage is starting to emerge since his commitment.
WR: Andre Debose – Sanford, FL
#17 on the ESPN 150
The most important player on Florida recruiting board. Has the ability and skill level to replace Percy Harvin with his combination of speed, quickness and acceleration. Played in a variety of spots (QB, RB, WR) in high school, including both punt and kickoff returner. Dangerous in the open space. Kid is an absolute playmaker. Has the ability to get open quickly, gets in and out of his cuts well, and has consistent hands. Has a great attitude (pull up the video on YouTube and compare his commitment at the Under Armor game with his teammates and tell me who you would rather have representing your school). Due to the fact that he played other positions in high school, he will need to learn the nuances of the WR position.
FSU fans were clamoring about his late visit to their campus, but all their hopes were squashed when Andre and his father stopped by Gainesville after his visit in order to meet with Coach Meyer.
The one that got away – Nu’Keese Richardson? While it definitely hurt that Richardson switched on signing day, if we would have signed Richardson and lost Debose it would have cataclysmic to class. Richardson is a nice player, but at 5’9” 155lbs, he wasn’t going to contribute in Gainesville in the next two years (unless you count the hundreds of pictures of him in the tunnel of the Swamp that Coach Marotti has posted).
TE: Desmond Parks enrolled in January and was previously written about.
On the Board Still:
Orson Charles – Tampa Plant High School. Down to 3 schools, Georgia (considered the favorite), USC (visiting the weekend of Feb. 20th) and Florida (the school that most logically fits him). Would be an excellent replacement to CI (coincidentally he wants to wear #7). Playing with his high school QB at Georgia really working against us.
OL: Nick Alajajian and Jonatthon Harrison enrolled in January and were previously written about.
Xavier Nixon – OT Fayetteville, NC
#50 on the ESPN 150
Could be Florida’s Andre Smith, he is that good of a player. He is tall, has long arms and light on his feet. While consistency needs to be worked on, he gives superior effort, excels in combination blocks and is extremely quick off the ball. He is also aggressive at the point of attack and has good football instincts. Improvement in his body control and work in the weight room could make him a complete tackle.
Was a silent commit after his visit for the LSU game, public announcement was held off until the Army All-American game due to the fact that his father (currently serving in Afghanistan) would be on leave and able to see the announcement.
Jon Halapio– OG St. Petersburg, FL
A mauler in every sense of the word. Has excellent balance and has good footwork. Needs to improve his technique and consistency. Pretty much defined an under the radar prospect until he was MVP of the Gainesville Nike Camp and he started picking up offers.
Kyle Koehne – OG Indianapolis, IN
Played tackle in high school, but will in all likelihood play guard in college. Basically the opposite of Halapio, Koehne excels technically and is sound in most blocking schemes, especially when covered during the running game. Koehne was the player of the year in the State of Indiana.
The one that got away - No one. In fact Miami was nice enough to sign one of our scraps - Jared Wheeler. Wheeler was considered to be too soft to play in the SEC after the Friday Night Lights camp and was slow played until Koehne committed.
Tuesday, February 17, 2009
This year’s class of signees