June recruiting in review

Summer is a busy time in the world of recruiting. Even with June coming to an end on Monday, recruiting will still pick up steam with The Opening being held in Beaverton, Oregon in early July and, of course,  Friday Night Lights in Gainesville the last weekend of the month.

Florida only picked up one commitment for the Class of 2015 during the month, but it was a big one from quarterback Sheriron Jones (6-2, 189, Moreno Valley CA, Rancho Verde). With a quarterback secured in the class, the Gators were able to turn their attention to other positions and hosted a slew of recruits on campus this past month.

The Gators also received a commitment from 2016 defensive back Chauncey Gardner (5-11, 190, Cocoa, FL High) during the month of June.

In this article Gator Country will get you caught up on everything in the world of recruiting from this past month that has to do with the Florida Gators.

What’s new with Gators Commits?

Cornerback Marcus Lewis (6-0, 194, Washington D.C. Gonzaga) says he plans to take some official visits this fall but he still hasn’t taken a visit  to Florida this summer. Lewis plans to visit Florida in July and really the only bad news is that Lewis isn’t transferring to IMG Academy. Lewis plans to stay home at Gonzaga with his family. Unless Florida struggles on the field this fall I expect Lewis to be a Gator.

Receiver Derrick Dillon (5-11, 174, Franklinton, LA. Pine) was on Florida’s campus for Will Muschamp’s camp in June and he had the opportunity to work with Chris Leak and the feedback was positive. Dillon is solid to Florida and is actively recruiting for the Gators.

Receiver Tristan Payton (6-0, 187, Jacksonville, FL First Coast) received an offer from USC on Thursday but unless he starts taking multiple visits to Los Angeles then the Gators should be fine here. Again, Payton is solid as long as the coaching staff remains intact.

2016 defensive back Chauncey Gardner (5-11, 190, Cocoa, FL High) flipped his commitment to Florida from Miami and the Gators are getting a good player here. Gardner made news at the IMG 7-on-7 national championship this past weekend for the trash talking he did. While Gardner trash talks a lot he can back it up.

New Targets for the Gators

Linebacker/Tight end Derrick Graham (6-4, 220, Wauchula, FL Hardee Senior) picked up a Florida offer during camp and he left impressed by the opportunity to play both linebacker and tight end. The Gators are battling Arkansas and Mississippi State right now but if the Gators push for Graham they have a great shot.

Cornerback Jeremy McDuffie (5-11, 169, Snellville, GA Shiloh) wowed the coaches at Will Muschamp’s camp and walked away with an offer from Florida. McDuffie now has a top two of Florida and Duke but admits that the Gators are a little ahead due to the track program. If the Gators can get back McDuffie back on campus in July then his recruitment could end in Florida’s favor.

Linebacker Reggie Walker (6-2, 230, Ponchatoula, LA, High) picked up a Florida offer on Monday after speaking to tight ends coach Derek Lewis. Will Muschamp has yet to lay eyes on Walker but once he does then he could have the green light to commit if he wanted. Walker will be in Gainesville for Friday Nights Lights in July and that’s when things could get interesting.

Offensive lineman Mirko Jurkovic Jr. (6-5, 276, Bradenton, FL IMG Academy) isn’t a new name to the board but he did pick up a Florida offer this month and the Gators are now in his top 3 with Nebraska and Ohio State, who also just recently offered. Jurkovic is scheduled to visit Florida in July and that visit will go a long ways in his recruitment as he looks to make a decision before his season. Right now it’s toss up for Jurkovic but he does like the weather in Florida and that helps the Gators.

Guys who committed elsewhere in June

Offensive lineman Emanuel McGirt (6-5, 271, Durham, NC Hillside) committed to North Carolina in June and he was a target but never visited the Gators. Florida is likely done with his recruitment barring a visit from him.

Linebacker Austin Smith (6-3, 220, Buford, GA High) committed to Tennessee last week and he was a target of Florida. Smith loved the Gators but Florida has guys higher on the board than him at the moment. If Florida decided to push hard for Smith then maybe the Gators could get in the mix but it’s doubtful at this point.

Offensive lineman George Asofo-Adjei (6-4, 310, West Chester, OH Lakota West) committed to Kentucky on Thursday and he had received an offer from Florida this spring but he never really was a high target for the Gators. Florida was interested but wanted to see him on campus and that never happened. Things are likely finished between the two parties.

Tight end Jackson Harris (6-5, 241, Columbia, TN Columbia Central) committed to Georgia over Alabama, Florida and Vanderbilt in June. Harris was a top target for Florida at the position and the Gators will continue to recruit him but Florida need to get him on campus to have a chance.

Look ahead to July

The beginning of July will be slow as the new NCAA dead period will start on Sunday and run through July 13th. The coaches will use this time to take vacations and recharge the batteries before recruiting picks up again.

July 25th will be the Gators next big recruiting event as Florida will host its annual Friday Night Lights event. As usual, a number of top 2015 prospects will be on campus plus a number of top underclassmen as well.

Here a few names who are expected to be on campus that day Jeffrey Holland, CeCe Jefferson, Byron Cowart, Sheriron Jones, Ray-Ray McCloud and George Campbell.

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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.