Simonds has two schools on top including the Florida Gators

The Florida Gators coaching staff has been out the road during the evaluation period the last few weeks and those visits have been to prospects all around the country.

Offensive lineman Riley Simonds (6-3, 324, Buford, GA. High) received a visit earlier this month and he says Dan Mullen and his staff has been in contact with him a lot.

“I talk to them once a day or every other day,” Simonds said of his talks with Florida. “It’s either Coach Mullen or Coach [John] Hevesy that I talk to. They’ve been recruiting me hard.”

Offensive line coach John Hevesy has been building a relationship with Simonds and it’s paying off according to the lineman.

“Just saying that he wants me and talking about the personal connections we have,” he said of his talks with Hevesy. “He said that we could work well together because our relationship is really good. We usually just talk a lot.”

Hevesy has talked to Simonds about where he would play at in Gainesville and the assistant coach thinks of the lineman as an interior guy.

“Probably center or guard,” Simonds said on where Hevesy sees him playing. “We haven’t really talked about that much.”

Head coach Dan Mullen has also been keeping tabs on Simonds and making sure the lineman knows he’s wanted in Gainesville.

“He just ask me how I’m doing and stuff,” Simonds said of his talks with Mullen. “He says that I need to be a Gator because big things are happening.”

Simonds who visited Florida in April has high praise for the Gators coaching and thinks Mullen is the right guy to fix things in Gainesville.

“I think they’re an awesome coaching staff,” he said on his thoughts on the coaches. “I think he’s [Mullen” going to turn the program around.”

Heading into the summer months, Simonds has two schools standing out to him because of two factors.

“My top two schools are Virginia Tech and Florida,” Simonds said on schools standing out. “I just like the atmosphere and people at those schools.”

The Gators will have another chance to impress Simonds and pull away from Virginia Tech when the Georgia prospect visits Gainesville.

“I’m going to officially visit in June,” he said on when he plans to visit Florida.

INSIDERS TAKE: Simonds says he isn’t sure of when he will make a final decision but he says most likely it will be before his season. Official visits will be key in Simonds’ recruitment but right now Florida is in a good spot with the lineman.

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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.