Linebackers coach Randy Shannon graduated from Norland High School, so it should be no surprise that he has done a great job of recruiting prospects from that school during his coaching career.
The trend is continuing for Shannon since he has arrived as a coach for the Florida Gators, and on Tuesday several players from Norland took visits to Florida.
Florida State linebacker commit Emmett Rice (6-3, 195, Miami, FL Norland) was one of those prospects who camped at Florida and working out with Shannon was the highlight of the trip.
“It was a nice trip, it was my first time in Gainesville and I liked it,” Rice said. “It was nice to work with Coach Shannon. He’s big on technique and he was able to show me a lot of things and help me with my technique. I think I learned a lot from working with him.”
Shannon watched Rice twice this spring and liked him enough to offer him. Now the Gators coach is trying to convince Rice to join him in Gainesville.
“Coach Shannon tells me that he wants me to come be a Gator,” he said. “He said that he wants me to come in play outside linebacker for him and that I can play with Vosean [Joseph] at the next level.”
Head coach Jim McElwain had never met Rice until Tuesday, but the Florida State commit was impressed by the Gators head coach.
“I talked to Coach McElwain before and after the camp,” Rice said. “He was just talking about how it is in Gainesville and what it means to be a Gator and that he would like to have me up there.”
The Florida State Seminoles were the first to offer Rice and that ultimately lead to him committing to the Noles but Rice remains open to the Florida Gators.
“I’m still considering Florida but I’m still locked in to Florida State,” Rice said. “I will say that Florida is my number two school right now. I’m going to come back up with Vosean again this summer to see everything again.”
INSIDERS TAKE: If Florida makes a big push for Rice then the Gators have a good shot here because of his relationship with Vosean Joseph, plus their relationship with linebackers coach Randy Shannon.