The Florida Gators basketball staff has been working hard on the road recruiting the last week and a half and on Thursday they handed out a new 2016 offer to an instate player.
That player is forward Dontay Bassett (6-8, 205, Oldsmar, FL Oldsmar Christian), who heard the news from head coach Mike White on Thursday afternoon.
“Coach White was the coach that offered me today [Thursday],” Bassett said. “Coach White and Coach [Dusty] May were here on Wednesday and they told me that they were going to offer but they wanted my coach to send in my transcript. Once they evaluated my transcript they made the offer official.”
Bassett has been picking up several big offers as of late including one from the Arkansas Razorbacks, but he says the Florida Gators basketball offer was a big one to him.
“The offer from Florida means a lot to me,” Bassett said. “Florida is a great program and there is a lot of good things about them as a program. They’re also close to home, so yeah.”
When White and May visited Bassett on Thursday they talked to him about what he could bring to the table in Gainesville.
“They told me that I’m a great player and that I can do a lot of good things on the court for them,” he said. “They said that my upside is very high and that I have a high ceiling. They think I can become a really good player.”
This was Bassett’s first opportunity to meet the new Florida Gators basketball coach and he was impressed by White’s personality.
“I’ve heard [about him] and after I talked to Coach White, he seems like a really nice guy,” Bassett said. “He cares about his players and that’s one thing I like about him. I love the direction he’s going to take Florida in.”
While Bassett likes White a lot, he’s closer to assistant coach Dusty May, as the two got a chance to meet last week.
“I talk to Coach May more than any of the other coaches,” he said. “I like Coach May and he’s a really good guy that also cares a lot about his players. We have a really good relationship with each other.”
When White offered Bassett on Thursday the Florida Gators basketball coach told Bassett that he was a needed guy in Gainesville.
“They want me to run the ‘4’ for them at Florida,” he said. “They think that I can do a lot of things for them at the position. They are in need of big men like myself in this class.”
Bassett has a full schedule of official visits planned for the next few weeks but the Gators may get the last word in with Bassett next month.
“I’m going to Oregon State this weekend and then next weekend I’m going to Colorado on an official,” Bassett said. “After that me and Coach White are going to set up a date around October 10th for my official to Florida. I want to announce this fall.”
INSIDERS TAKE: Florida is a school that just offered Bassett but the Florida Gators basketball staff has been evaluating him for some time now and they are a staff Bassett likes a lot. As long as Bassett makes his official to Florida then the Gators have a good shot.