Florida Gators recruiting mailbag: December 13th edition

The Florida Gators recruiting efforts finished the regular season strong with a huge win over Florida State and the coaching staff is now out on the road visiting prospects for the third straight week.

Mullen and his coaching staff have been hitting the road hard since the day after Florida State and will host the third round of visitors this weekend.

Gator Country’s members have a lot of questions about how the 2019 class will shake out and who are the top prospects that the Gators are still after.

We answer your questions in this week’s Florida Gators recruiting mailbag.

Well let’s dive right in to this week’s recruiting mailbag:


Shade45: Predictions on defensive line after last weekend.
How would missing out on the Lakeland duo impact Bowman for 2020?

AS: Brandon Dorlus and Derick Hunter are two guys that I like Florida’s chances with on early signing day. Lloyd Summerall is still a guy that Florida is right there with. Guys signing in February like Quashon Fuller and Nathan Pickering are still in play as well.

Everything I’ve heard is that Bowman is a guy that will make his own decision but it would certainly help to have former teammates on the team.


UFMBA14: Still a pretty good shot at a top 10 finish?

AS: I still believe that Florida has a legit shot to finish with a top 10 class at this time.


Jump_pass: Seriously though, How are you feeling on Steele and Elam? Does UF get both?

AS: Florida is in a really good spot with Chris Steele and are doing much better with Kaiir Elam as of late and are the team with a slight edge of Georgia. Elam doesn’t sign until February so still time to go.


GatorFanSeth: Is everyone that’s early signing signing on the 19th?

AS: Yes, everyone says they will do it on the first day.


DylanGator: With Diaz potentially leaving, and whatever you’ve gathered from his visit over the weekend, how would you assess the chances of landing Stevenson?

AS: I’m told the chances of landing Tyrique Stevenson is very slim right now. Georgia looks to be in great shape.


Isleptinbhg: What percentage of the time do recruits mislead you (or outright lie to you) when you are working the recruiting beat?

AS: I find it very rare for a kid to just outright lie to me, now they may just ignore the question or play it off but it’s very rare that they outright lie to you. But the key to this job is to have sources and kids very rarely lie to those sources because they understand they may need those guys again one day.


Drh06: Which offensive line recruits not already committed to UF do you see as a good possibility to do so? (say, better than 33% chance)

AS: Deyavie Hammond is the guy that Florida has the best shot heading into this weekend’s visit to Gainesville. Dontae Lucas and Evan Neal are guys that Florida is still in play with but they have some work to do with both of those guys.


Macbgator: In your opinion, who do we finish with at cornerback???

AS: Chris Steele and Kaiir Elam are the two guys that I think Florida will close with at corner.


Macbgator: Any surprise recruits going on behind the scenes that have not been mentioned?

AS: Not really, the guys that are visiting this weekend like Evan Neal and Trey Sanders are the guys that Florida has been working the hardest on behind the scenes. That’s a big reason Florida got the last visit for both of those guys.


Ol2ange: How are we looking for Mark Anthony Richards?

AS: He plans to visit Florida in January and that’s a big visit for the Gators as heading into that visit, they’re battling Auburn and Miami. Florida has gained a lot of ground with Richards over the last few months and have a real shot now.


Zombieg8r: With all the coaching changes that have happened and will happen, how do you see that affecting the Gators recruiting class? Positive or negative. Also, there have been some rumors about Grantham possibly leaving. Any truth to that?

AS: It’s always positive when other teams lose coaches and you keep your coaching staff intact and that’s what Florida has done so far. The biggest prospect that Florida has gained momentum on due to a coaching change is with Kaiir Elam because of Georgia losing Mel Tucker.

As far as Grantham goes, I expect him to return to Florida as defensive coordinator next year.


Chasg25: If we miss on Zip on ESD do you expect the TE board to expand in January or will they pass on taking one this cycle?

AS: They will definitely look to see who doesn’t sign early but signing a tight end isn’t a must this year and they could use the scholarship elsewhere.


Irgator12: Still no clue who else we are getting at wide receiver. Are we done there?

AS: With Trent Whittemore likely starting out at receiver, the Gators could be done at the position. They will bring in Kennedy Lewis and possible Arjei Henderson for visits in January and those guys are ones to watch.


TheGator: Are Florida’s facilities or lack thereof still hindering Florida from having a Top 5 finish? What is stopping Florida from winning the recruiting battles with UGA and Bama?

AS: Facilities hurt Florida no doubt about it but at the end of the day most guys don’t choose a school for that reason alone. Mullen is building relationships and that’s the key to catching up to those teams.


UFMBA14: Our board has expanded like crazy recently. Everyone has been wondering how the numbers will work. Is there ANY chance that the Lakeland duo was slow played because we have a nice surprise coming to fit in to the class and Summerall/Zip weren’t as high a priority?

AS: Both guys were and are priorities for the staff and the coaching staff still wants them. Dan Mullen will be by Lakeland this week to visit with those guys and it’s still a battle between Florida and Miami for those guys.


Johnagator: Do you expect any more verbals before the early signing day?

AS: I believe that everyone will wait until early signing day to announce a decision.


Buford: Could Trey Sanders and Evan Neal be a package deal?

AS: I don’t think they’re telling everyone they’re a package deal at all but could they end up at the same school? Very possible that they do but it won’t be an influence in either one of their decisions.


Buford: I would really like to steal Dontae Lucas from FSU. Is that a realistic possibility?

AS: After his official visit to Florida, the Gators certainly are back in the conversation for Lucas. He visits FSU this weekend and they will do everything they can to solidify his commitment. Lucas however is listening to Florida and is close with running back commit Nay’Quan Wright which gives Florida a chance.


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.