It looks like one of the benefits of winning a decisive National Championship game is the attention on the Florida Gators now shines like a beacon to top prospects that were not otherwise considering them. Such is the case with USC commitment, five-star and number one defensive end Everson Griffen who decided to take an official visit to Florida over the weekend.
The Gators celebrated their second national championship in front of a crowd of 70,000 fans in The Swamp this weekend, which Griffin witnessed first hand. He was also undoubtedly made aware of an exodus of defensive linemen that will leave the cupboard pretty bare at defensive end and allow for immediate playing time for anyone willing and able.
Gator Country caught up with Griffen (6-4, 260) while he was at the airport and he only had a short time to chat but shared a few thoughts. He said he really liked the play of the defensive ends in the championship game and that is what caught his attention to take a visit to Florida in the first place.
“I saw the defensive ends in the game last week and that opened my eyes to come out and visit,” Griffen said. “I love how they get off the ball at the snap and then they really get after the ball.”
He also saw that the Gators truly have a need on the defensive line as five of the top six linemen on the roster will be auditioning for the NFL in the coming months.
“It was good,” he said about the trip. “I like that the position I want to play is open. It opened my eyes a little bit.”
Again, like in most reports, it seems the people on the campus and on the team are what make the University of Florida a good place to be to top recruits.
“I like Coach Mattison, he is cool,” Griffen said about the Gators defensive line coach. “Lawrence Marsh was my host and he was a cool guy. One thing that stood out was the players, they were super cool. I liked Brandon Spikes, Lawrence Marsh, and Chevon Walker, they were all great.”
He remains committed to USC and will be heading there for an unofficial visit next weekend. Still, the Gators made a good impression and the opportunity for early playing time should make an impression on Griffen. Maybe those thoughts linger a little ‘til signing day. Time will tell.