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  • Chris Rumph, University of Florida, Florida Gators, Gainesville, Florida

    Defensive line coach Chris Rumph goes in depth about the young talent he has at his disposal along the offensive line. / Gator Country photo by David Bowie

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defensive line board

Written by Andrew Spivey, June 1, 2015, 5 Comments,
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The Florida Gators coaching staff has been busy with the spring evaluation period going on since the middle of April. That will come to end at the end of the month, but the coaching staff will have no time to rest.

Jim McElwain said it best during his opening press conference when he said “recruit daily or die” and he has taken that approach this recruiting cycle. With the spring evaluation period over soon the Gators will go right into summer camp where they hope to host several big time visitors.

Over the next week GatorCountry.com will break down each position and let you know who Florida has the best chance at landing heading into the summer as well as some guys to watch that Florida could gain on this summer.

Last week took a look at the offensive side of the ball so this week we move to the defensive side of the ball and start in the trenches with the defensive line.

 

DL recruiting breakdown

 

Commits

Defensive end JaQuan Bailey (6-3, 235, Jacksonville, FL Raines) is a solid commit to Florida and he’s someone that has the Gators excited about his future. Bailey will be at Florida this weekend for a visit.

 

Defensive end Eric Mitchell (6-1, 228, Miami, FL Central) is very solid to Florida and he’s good friends with a lot of players on the Gators team. The biggest question surrounding Mitchell is where he will end up playing in college because he’s not big enough at this point to play defensive end so linebacker may be his position of the future.

 

 

Best chance heading into the summer

Below are the guys that GatorCountry.com believes Florida has the best shot with as of right now. This list is surely to change as the summer progresses and prospects visit schools.

 

Keyshon Camp (6-3, 274, Lakeland, FL Lake Gibson)

Why he makes the list: Camp likes Florida a lot, but right now the Gators aren’t pushing extremely hard for him. If they do, then Gators are likely to be his leader. Camp will visit Florida this summer.

Teams in the race: USC is the leader for Camp at this time and Miami is also in the mix as Camp was once committed to them.

 

Antonneous Clayton (6-4, 218, Vienna, GA Dooly County)

Why he makes the list: Clayton said that Florida set the bar high when he visited Gainesville earlier in May. Clayton says he grew up watching the Gators on TV and that his family loves the coaching staff at Florida. Clayton isn’t close to making a decision though.

Teams in the race: Auburn is the main contender to Florida right now as Clayton is friends with a few of Auburn’s players and he just visited Auburn this past weekend. Clayton will likely choose between the two schools when he makes a decision.

 

Darius Whitfield (6-1, 268, Mobile, AL St. Paul’s)

Why he makes the list: Florida was Whitfield’s favorite school growing up and he’s also best friends with new Florida commit La’Mical Perine. Whitfield is someone that Florida is monitoring closely and he will likely visit Florida this coming weekend.

Teams in the race: Alabama, Auburn, LSU and Miami are all teams that Whitfield talks about and if Alabama offers then the Crimson Tide will be tough to beat since his older brother plays for Alabama.

 

Jordan Woods (6-3, 235, Ocala, FL Trinity Catholic

Why he makes the list: Woods has visited Florida over a dozen times as a prospect and was on campus several times this spring. Woods is building a great relationship with defensive line coach Chris Rumph and that helps Florida. The Gators are by far the team to beat here.

Teams in the race: Florida State and Georgia are two other teams that Woods mentions as recruiting him hard but right now Woods has no plans to visit either team.

 

Names to remember

The following list are guys that have either said they will visit Florida this summer or have said that there is a chance they could visit this summer. These are prospects that like Florida but have yet to visit the Gators or are still a long ways away from making a decision. Stay tuned to Gator Country to see if these prospects will visit the Florida Gators this summer.

 

Dexter Lawrence (6-5, 290, Wake Forest, NC High)

Why he makes the list: Florida was Lawrences’ favorite school growing up and the Gators have been working hard on getting him down to campus and that looks like it will finally happen this summer. Lawrence is a big time need this year.

Teams in the mix: Alabama Crimson Tide, Clemson Tigers, Georgia Bulldogs, North Carolina Tar Heels and Ohio State Buckeyes are all schools that Lawrence talks about. He has said he will decide between Georgia, Alabama, Tennessee, Ohio State and others this summer.

 

Shavar Manuel (6-3, 262, Bradenton, FL IMG Academy)

Why he makes the list: Florida has been gaining ground on Manuel ever since Florida hired Chris Rumph and the Gators have received two visits from Manuel this spring and are hopeful he will visit this summer.

Teams in the mix: Florida State is the team to beat here and Manuel will visit them this summer and a commitment could come at any time from Manuel but Florida State has lost some momentum as of late.

 

Janarius Robinson (6-5, 225, Panamy City, FL Bay)

Why he makes the list: Robinson has built a good relationship with the Florida Gators coaching staff and visited this spring so the Gators are at least keeping in touch with the Noles commit.

Teams in the mix: Robinson has been committed to Florida State for some time now and it will be tough to break that commitment but Alabama and Florida are trying to get Robinson on campus as much as possible.

Andrew Spivey

About Andrew Spivey

Andrew always knew he wanted to be involved with sports in some capacity. He began by coaching high school football for six years before deciding to pursue a career in journalism. While coaching, he was a part of two state semifinal teams in the state of Alabama. Given his past coaching experience, he figured covering recruiting would be a perfect fit. He began his career as an intern for Rivals.com, covering University of Florida football recruiting. After interning with Rivals for six months, he joined the Gator Country family as a recruiting analyst. Andrew enjoys spending his free time on the golf course and watching his beloved Atlanta Braves. Follow him on Twitter at @AndrewSpiveyGC.

  1. landportJune 1, 2015, 6:58 am

    I have a degree of confidence in Coach Mac and the staff he has assembled. And, being outside the program I realize there is much to which I am not privacy. The people named in this article are DL prospects. My question: Do these kids seem a little undersized to be thought of as guys who will be ‘–in the trenches’? Miami Central, Miami Jackson and several other Miami area high schools typically have larger kids in the DL. And, yes, I realize that seventeen and eighteen year olds tend to get bigger. But typically the DL comes in a little bigger (Easley-258), (Floyd-310), (Orr-300) and Jacobs (290), (Brantley-300), (Bostwick-290), Cummings-305) to name a few.

    • gatorcalJune 1, 2015, 11:07 am

      They seem small, but take a look at the comparisons you’re using. Other than Easley, every player you listed is a DT. The article combines both DE and DT. The DTs in the article weigh in at 274, 268, and 290. These weights are taken at the end of their Jr year. All the weights you listed are measurements taken at the end of their Senior year. Add in another 10 lbs. or so they will gain this year and the numbers compare favorably. In the case of Jacobs and Cummings, those are actually their weights after a couple years of Junior College. Cummings was actually 255 coming out of HS.

      As for the DEs, take a look at the weights of recent DE at the end of their Sr year: Fowler-236, McCalister-220, Dunlap-250, Bullard-255, Moss-220, Harvey-235. Guys like Woods and Manuel are bigger DE, in the mold of Easley and Bullard. They may be able to go inside at times like those two did. The other on the list are pretty thin, bur similar to all these other guys in HS.

    • landportJune 1, 2015, 2:18 pm

      GATORCAL: You are likely correct on this ‘size thing’. After the past 4 years it seems that everything about Gator football makes me jumpy. Traditionally, the SEC are the best at ‘undersizing’ guys who are supposed to be large. I recall Tim Newton coming to Gainesville as a 6’2″ – 212 linebacker. Four years later he was listed as 6’0″ and 305 and an All-SEC nose guard. Bear Bryant would typically say that his OL was, ‘—very small and also not very strong or quick’. In his last game at Alabama OT, Cecil Dowdy, was listed as 6’0″ and 212 lbs. The following season he was a starting OL for the NFL NY Giants and listed as 6’3″ and 285 lbs. So, who knows or cares if they can bring the Gators back to relevancy.

    • Andrew Spivey
      Andrew SpiveyJune 2, 2015, 6:43 pm

      The defensive ends are always a little smaller.

  2. landportJune 3, 2015, 2:41 pm

    Julian Rochester – 6’5″ and 322 lbs. – 4-Star, DT commit to Georgia. (This is what I am talking about when it comes to size. This is a defensive tackle!!)

http://www.gatorcountry.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/Florida-Gators-florida-football-sixth-spring-practice-march-25-2015-Florida-Gators-defensive-line-coach-Chris-Rumph-yells-150x150.jpg Andrew Spivey FeatureRecruiting ,,,,,,,,,,
Print Friendly

The Florida Gators coaching staff has been busy with the spring evaluation period going on since the middle of April. That will come to end at the end of the month, but the coaching staff will have no time to rest.

Jim McElwain said it best during his opening press conference when he said “recruit daily or die” and he has taken that approach this recruiting cycle. With the spring evaluation period over soon the Gators will go right into summer camp where they hope to host several big time visitors.

Over the next week GatorCountry.com will break down each position and let you know who Florida has the best chance at landing heading into the summer as well as some guys to watch that Florida could gain on this summer.

Last week took a look at the offensive side of the ball so this week we move to the defensive side of the ball and start in the trenches with the defensive line.

 

DL recruiting breakdown

 

Commits

Defensive end JaQuan Bailey (6-3, 235, Jacksonville, FL Raines) is a solid commit to Florida and he’s someone that has the Gators excited about his future. Bailey will be at Florida this weekend for a visit.

 

Defensive end Eric Mitchell (6-1, 228, Miami, FL Central) is very solid to Florida and he’s good friends with a lot of players on the Gators team. The biggest question surrounding Mitchell is where he will end up playing in college because he’s not big enough at this point to play defensive end so linebacker may be his position of the future.

 

 

Best chance heading into the summer

Below are the guys that GatorCountry.com believes Florida has the best shot with as of right now. This list is surely to change as the summer progresses and prospects visit schools.

 

Keyshon Camp (6-3, 274, Lakeland, FL Lake Gibson)

Why he makes the list: Camp likes Florida a lot, but right now the Gators aren’t pushing extremely hard for him. If they do, then Gators are likely to be his leader. Camp will visit Florida this summer.

Teams in the race: USC is the leader for Camp at this time and Miami is also in the mix as Camp was once committed to them.

 

Antonneous Clayton (6-4, 218, Vienna, GA Dooly County)

Why he makes the list: Clayton said that Florida set the bar high when he visited Gainesville earlier in May. Clayton says he grew up watching the Gators on TV and that his family loves the coaching staff at Florida. Clayton isn’t close to making a decision though.

Teams in the race: Auburn is the main contender to Florida right now as Clayton is friends with a few of Auburn’s players and he just visited Auburn this past weekend. Clayton will likely choose between the two schools when he makes a decision.

 

Darius Whitfield (6-1, 268, Mobile, AL St. Paul’s)

Why he makes the list: Florida was Whitfield’s favorite school growing up and he’s also best friends with new Florida commit La’Mical Perine. Whitfield is someone that Florida is monitoring closely and he will likely visit Florida this coming weekend.

Teams in the race: Alabama, Auburn, LSU and Miami are all teams that Whitfield talks about and if Alabama offers then the Crimson Tide will be tough to beat since his older brother plays for Alabama.

 

Jordan Woods (6-3, 235, Ocala, FL Trinity Catholic

Why he makes the list: Woods has visited Florida over a dozen times as a prospect and was on campus several times this spring. Woods is building a great relationship with defensive line coach Chris Rumph and that helps Florida. The Gators are by far the team to beat here.

Teams in the race: Florida State and Georgia are two other teams that Woods mentions as recruiting him hard but right now Woods has no plans to visit either team.

 

Names to remember

The following list are guys that have either said they will visit Florida this summer or have said that there is a chance they could visit this summer. These are prospects that like Florida but have yet to visit the Gators or are still a long ways away from making a decision. Stay tuned to Gator Country to see if these prospects will visit the Florida Gators this summer.

 

Dexter Lawrence (6-5, 290, Wake Forest, NC High)

Why he makes the list: Florida was Lawrences’ favorite school growing up and the Gators have been working hard on getting him down to campus and that looks like it will finally happen this summer. Lawrence is a big time need this year.

Teams in the mix: Alabama Crimson Tide, Clemson Tigers, Georgia Bulldogs, North Carolina Tar Heels and Ohio State Buckeyes are all schools that Lawrence talks about. He has said he will decide between Georgia, Alabama, Tennessee, Ohio State and others this summer.

 

Shavar Manuel (6-3, 262, Bradenton, FL IMG Academy)

Why he makes the list: Florida has been gaining ground on Manuel ever since Florida hired Chris Rumph and the Gators have received two visits from Manuel this spring and are hopeful he will visit this summer.

Teams in the mix: Florida State is the team to beat here and Manuel will visit them this summer and a commitment could come at any time from Manuel but Florida State has lost some momentum as of late.

 

Janarius Robinson (6-5, 225, Panamy City, FL Bay)

Why he makes the list: Robinson has built a good relationship with the Florida Gators coaching staff and visited this spring so the Gators are at least keeping in touch with the Noles commit.

Teams in the mix: Robinson has been committed to Florida State for some time now and it will be tough to break that commitment but Alabama and Florida are trying to get Robinson on campus as much as possible.

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