Last weekend the Gators hosted a rare official visitor in JUCO defensive end Jeremiah Ledbetter (6-3, 280, Hutchinson, KS Hutchinson C.C.) who was able to take an official visit this early because of him being a JUCO prospect.
“It was a good time and a good experience,” Ledbetter said. “I met the coaches and they showed me around campus, showed me the locker room and all of the facilities. Everything is very nice and Florida is a top program for a reason.”
Ledbetter may attend college in Kansas but he grew up just two hours south of Gainesville in a family that bled orange and blue and that history with Florida has propelled the Gators to the top of his list.
“Florida stands out the most right now because of the coaches and the relationship I have with them,” Ledbetter said. “I also grew up in Orlando and my family is Gator fans and Florida is very close to home. I have to say that I grew up rooting for Florida too.”
During the visit to Florida Ledbetter had the opportunity to meet Will Muschamp and defensive line coach Brad Lawing for the first time and he thinks the two have the same personality.
“Coach Muschamp is a very good guy and he seems laid back,” Ledbetter said. “He’s laid back but he also seems like a guy that would get after you during practice. He’s a really good guy. Coach Lawing is the same way and kind of old school. Coach Lawing seems very logical and he puts players in the NFL so that’s big.”
When Ledbetter spoke to Lawing and Muschamp the two defensive gurus told Ledbetter how he would fit into the Gators defense if he chooses the home state school.
“Both of the coaches told me that they see me playing defensive end right now but maybe growing into a defensive tackle,” Ledbetter said. “They said that they see me coming in and making an impact in both the 3-4 and 4-3 defenses they run. I feel like I can transition into both defenses pretty easy.”
Not only was Ledbetter impressed by what he saw but his family was also wowed by what the Gators showed them.
“I went with my parents and my brother on the visit,” Ledbetter said. “They liked it a lot. They were impressed by what the coaches had to say and by the facilities. Both of my parents were just really impressed by Florida overall.”
Florida was Ledbetter’s first official visit of his five allotted, but the JUCO defensive end says that he will probably only take one or two more visits.
“This was my first official visit but I did take an unofficial visit to Arkansas a while back,” Ledbetter said. “I want to take an official to Miami and possibly Arkansas. I really don’t have a decision date but I would like to have a decision made before the season starts because I plan to enroll in January.”