Looking at Florida Gators recruiting visitors for January

January is the busiest month for recruiting including the Florida Gators recruiting department who will host visitors for the three weekends in the month.

This is the last chance for the coaching staff to sway prospects and these official visits will be huge for the Gators.

Head coach Jim McElwain said on Monday that the Gators will have a new defensive coach in place by these visits so that will be another huge thing for defensive recruits.

Gator Country looks at the three weekends and breaks down who is expect to be on the Florida Gators recruiting visitors list for those weekends. We also look at the guys who haven’t set an official visit up yet but are said to be visiting Gainesville.


January 13th weekend

Defensive back Brian Edwards (6-3, 195, Hollywood, FL. Miramar)- Edwards is scheduled to visit Miami, Florida, and Louisville in January. The Gators are the team with the momentum but Miami the team he was once committed to is trying to lure him back in the class.

Defensive back commit Elijah Blades (6-3, 170, Pasadena, CA. Muir)- Blades has been committed since last summer but the Gators are trying to fend off Nebraska and USC. The Gators would like to have Blades end his recruitment during the visit and that’s something we will be watching for.

Linebacker commit Ventrell Miller (6-1, 225, Lakeland, FL. Kathleen)- Miller has said this will be his only visit of the month. Miller has been locked into the Gators since he committed last summer.

Defensive back C.J. Henderson (6-0, 175, Miami, FL. Columbus)– Miami, Alabama and Florida are all battling for Henderson but it looks to be a true battle between the Gators and Crimson Tide. Florida has been the team to beat since he decomitted from Miami and that still is the case but January visits will be important.

Safety Devon Hunter (6-1, 205, Chesapeake, VA. Indian River)- Hunter was supposed to commit on Christmas but pushed his decision date back so he could take January visits. Alabama and Auburn are also trying to get visits from the safety but the Gators visit is the only one locked in. Virginia Tech is the team to beat but he visited them two weeks ago.

Offensive lineman Stephan Zabie (6-6, 290, Austin, TX. Westlake)- Zabie is a guy that who isn’t talked about a lot because he wasn’t able to play his senior year but is a big time prospect. Zabie is a guy that will contribute in college at tackle and will visit Florida and Oklahoma in January. USC is also a team mentioned with Zabie.


January 20th weekend

Running back commit Malik Davis (5-11, 187, Tampa, FL. Jesuit)- Davis was waiting on an offer from Florida and jumped on quickly after picking it up this fall. Davis is solid to Florida and this visit is about him getting to know everyone better.

Defensive end commit Zach Carter (6-4, 237, Tampa, FL. Hillsborough)- Carter is recruiting others to Florida and has been that way since he committed over the summer. The Gators don’t have anything to worry about with Carter.

Receiver commit Daquon Green (6-1, 192, Tampa, FL. Tech)- Green has been committed to Florida since the summer of 2015 and hasn’t wavered since then. Green has also been recruiting others to Florida.

Defensive tackle Tyrone Truesdell (6-3, 325, Augusta, GA. Laney) – The defensive tackle is scheduled to visit Louisville and Florida in January. The Gators have been the team to beat for some time now and nothing suggests that has changed.

Defensive tackle Alec Jackson (6-5, 270, Montgomery, AL. Jeff Davis)- Jackson currently says USC leads because that was his only official visit but he plans to visit Auburn, Florida and Ole Miss in January. This looks to be a Florida/Auburn battle but Jackson did name the Gators his leader last spring.

Tight end commit Zech Byrd (6-6, 235, Millbrook, AL. Stanhope Elmore)- Byrd had hinted that he may take other visit but at this time it looks as if Florida will be his only visit. Byrd also committed over the summer and hasn’t wavered from that since committing.

Defensive back commit Marco Wilson (6-0, 180, Plantation, FL. American Heritage)- The Gators landed Wilson over the summer and been solid since. Wilson is helping recruit others to Gainesville for the 2017 and 2018 classes.


January 27th

Michigan offensive line commit Kai-Leon Herbert (6-4, 279, Plantation, FL. American Heritage)- Florida and Miami are both trying to flip the Michigan commit and the Gators get the last chance. Florida has a decent chance at flipping Herbert who sees playing time in Gainesville.

Offensive lineman T.J. Moore (6-5, 276, Charlotte, NC. Mallard Creek) – Moore is scheduled to visit Florida, South Carolina, and Auburn in January with the Gators getting the last visit. Florida is the team with the momentum at the moment due to his relationship with D.J. Humphries and the Gators having playing time available.

Defensive back Brad Stewart (6-0, 185, New Orleans, LA. McDonough 35)- Stewart has been very quiet in his recruitment but plans to visit Arizona State, Arkansas, and Florida in January with the Gators getting the last visit. Stewart talks to running backs coach Tim Skipper a lot and has a great relationship with the Gators.

Defensive end Labryan Ray (6-4, 255, Madison, AL. James Clemens)- Alabama and Florida are battling to land Ray who is considered one of the top defensive ends in the country. Ray will visit the Gators the last weekend of January and Florida hopes to pull him away from the instate Crimson Tide.

Defensive tackle Aubrey Solomon (6-2, 280, Leesburg, GA. Lee County) – Michigan, Georgia, and Alabama are all out ahead for Solomon but the Gators are surprisingly getting the last visit for the defensive tackle who once called the Gators his leader. Convincing Solomon’s mom is the biggest thing any school must do in order to land the tackle.

Defensive back Tray Bishop (6-3, 185, Dawson, GA. Terrell County)- Bishop decomitted from Auburn last week and Florida and Georgia are the two schools with the best chance at the defensive back. Florida has been recruiting Bishop as a defensive back since day one while Georgia has been recruiting him as a receiver.

Offensive lineman Caleb Chandler (6-5, 295, Jefferson, GA. High)- Chandler plans to visit Florida and Louisville in January with the Gators getting the last visit. Chandler is a bit of unknown guy but is someone that would depth in Gainesville.


The following prospects are scheduled to visit Florida but haven’t set a date yet.

RB Adarius Lemons (6-0, 195, Clearwater, FL. High)- Lemons was a commit then decomitted due to him being removed from his football team but the running back is back on the right track. Lemons just needs to continue to do things right and he could land back in the class.

RB Bentavious Thompson (6-0, 185, Miami, FL. Southridge)- This running back was once committed to Miami but backed off of that pledge and has quietly been talking to Florida. Thompson is someone that the Gators have a good chance at landing.

WR James Robinson (6-4, 190, Lakeland, FL. High)- The roller coast ride of Robinson’s commitment is back to looking like the Gators want him. Some off the field stuff scared some teams off of Robinson but that seems to have settled. Oklahoma is also battling for Robinson.

WR Henry Ruggs (6-0, 175, Montgomery, AL. Lee)- Ruggs isn’t just a good receiver but he’s an incredible athlete who has Florida, Alabama, Auburn and Florida State all trying to land him. The Gators look to have the best shot of any out of state team.

OL Tony Gray (6-5, 269, Lawrenceville, GA. Grayson)- Gray announced on Twitter that he would be visiting Florida in January but didn’t have a date for that yet. Gray is someone that doesn’t talk much so it’s tough to know where his head is truly at but we do know that he talks to Florida a lot.

Florida State defensive tackle commit Cory Durden (6-4, 283, Newberry, FL. High)- The defensive tackle put together a solid senior year and is now likely to visit both Florida and Florida State in January. Durden was at several Gators game this fall but has a family connection to Florida State that will be tough to overcome.

Defensive end Markaviest Bryant (6-4, 226, Cordele, GA. Crisp County- Bryant says he will visit Alabama, Georgia, Auburn and one other team in January. The Gators are the team that he says that will likely get that visit. Bryant is related to freshman defensive end Antonneous Clayton and the Gators are trying to use that connection to land Bryant.

Linebacker Levi Jones( 6-2, 215, Austin, TX, Westlake)- USC, LSU, and Texas A&M are battling with Florida for the talented linebacker. Jones’ father is close with Gators linebackers coach Randy Shannon and that gives much hope with Jones. It looks as if it will be a Florida/A&M battle for the linebacker.

Alabama offensive line commit Kendall Randolph (6-5, 290, Madison, AL. Bob Jones)- Randolph made news during the Alabama/Mississippi All-Star game when he said he would visit Florida in January. Right now I would say that’s just a free trip as Randolph has been very pro-Alabama thus far.

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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.