The Florida Gators coaching staff was scattered across the state of Florida the last two weeks visiting just about every high school in the state looking for prospects.
Linebackers coach Randy Shannon made a stop in Miami to see Miami Hurricanes offensive line commit Navaughn Donaldson (6-6, 341, Miami, FL Central) practice.
“Coach Shannon came by school last week to see me and my teammates,” Donaldson said. “It went well with him but he couldn’t talk to me. He stayed and watched me practice and then he talked to my coaches and told them to have me call him.”
Shannon and Donaldson spoke over the phone later that night where the Gators coach delivered his recruiting pitch to the lineman.
“He told me that he wants me to come there and take a visit so I can see the campus,” he said of Shannon’s message. “He said he’s going to try and get me to commit to Florida because Florida is the place to be. He said that he likes the way I play and that I would be a great fit for Florida.”
Much like the rest of the Gators top recruiting targets, Donaldson speaks to several Florida assistant coaches who all have a different recruiting message for him.
“I talk to Coach Shannon mainly, but I message with the offensive line coach [Mike Summers] and some of the other coaches too,” Donaldson said. “The offensive line coach just tells me that he needs me up there and that I can play early at Florida.”
Donaldson, who has been committed to Miami since last year, says that a few things have him interested in the Gators and has an upcoming visit in mind for Gainesville.
“I have good interest in Florida, I just want to get up there and take a visit to see them,” he said of his Florida interest. “I’m going to go up there for a visit after school is over with this summer. I have some family up there that goes to school there and I like their offensive scheme so that’s what I like about them. I also like that Florida is in Florida. but it really isn’t like you’re at home, but I’m still close to home. That’s something that interests me.”
When Donaldson makes it up to campus he has a few things he wants to see, as well as a few people he wants to speak too.
“I’m looking forward to seeing campus life, seeing the players and how they workout,” Donaldson said of what he wants to see on the visit. “I want to see the facilities and I want to meet the coaching staff. I also want to speak to the players to see how they like it up there.”
Florida and a few other schools are giving Donaldson something to think about in regards to his commitment to Miami.
“I’m still solid to Miami,” he said. “I have a couple of teams that are tied behind Miami right now. Florida, West Virginia, North Carolina and Georgia are all tied behind them right now. Really I just need to go on visits and see what it looks like and then I’ll make my decision based off that.”
INSIDERS TAKE: Donaldson is one of the top offensive linemen in the state of Florida and is a big target for the Gators. Florida is a school that has Donaldson’s attention right now but the Gators need to get him on campus this summer.