The Florida Gators coaching staff hasn’t had a lot of visitors on campus recently but on Wednesday they hosted a key instate prospect.
2020 tight end Jonathan Odom (6-6, 240, Tampa, FL. Jesuit) was on campus on Wednesday and got to spend a lot of time around the coaching staff.
“We just kind of went around campus and did a photo shoot,” Odom said on what all he got to do on Wednesday’s visit to Florida. “We went and talked with Coach [Larry] Scott for about an hour and 45 minutes, watching film and he was showing me how I fit into the offense. Then we went into Coach Mullen’s office and talked for about two hours.”
During the visit, Odom got to sit down with head coach Dan Mullen and he offered the tight end while they were in his office.
“He offered me with me and my family up in his office,” he said of Mullen offering him a scholarship on Wednesday. “He said that they wanted to take at least one tight end this year but that they really wanted to take two in my class. Then he kind of broke it down and explained that I did have an offer from them and that he didn’t want me to rush anything but that I could commit anytime I was ready. He showed me how I fit into their program.”
Tight ends coach Larry Scott had a message for Odom and his family about why the Gators wanted to offer the tight end and how Florida liked him for his play and not for whose son he was.
“He told me that he has been evaluating me for about two years now, watching my film from each season,” Odom said of what Scott told him once he got the Florida offer. “He talked about how he wasn’t offering me because I was Jason Odom’s son but he was offering me because I’m Jonathan Odom the tight end. I was kind of nervous about Florida when I was getting recruited because I didn’t want an offer from them for the background because ultimately the background wouldn’t be playing at the University of Florida. He said I would create my own legacy if I come there and that I don’t have to be in anyone’s shadow.”
This was an offer that was special to Odom for several reason but the tight end doesn’t feel any pressure from his father who once played for the Gators.
“We were all very excited of course my grandma and grandpa are big Florida fans so they were a little emotional,” Odom said on what the offer from Florida means to him. “My parents were super excited but they ultimately don’t want me to go to Florida because they went there or because it’s close, if I do go to Florida they want it to be the best fit for me. They told me multiple times that they aren’t pulling for Florida but they’re pulling for what’s best for me.”
Scott and the Gators coaching staff spent a lot of time with Odom on Wednesday explaining how the tight end would fit into Florida’s offense if he chooses Gainesville for college.
“He was showing me how I could be a threat down field,” he said on how Scott sees him fitting into the offense. “He said how I’m a natural pass catcher and also how I have the potential to be a huge help in the run game as well. Just being a versatile tight end. He showed me how I could be a mismatch down the field and go up and get the ball against smaller guys. I’m not going to be a receiver that is 6-2, 190-pounds that plays tight end, so I tell schools that if they don’t want me as a tight end then I don’t want to waste their time or my time. I’m going to be a tight end, I’m going to be a big physical tight end that can get open in the passing game.”
Now that Odom has picked up the offer from the Gators, the tight end now has a timeline for how he would like his recruitment to play out.
“I have a couple of visits scheduled then I’m going to release a top 10 sometime soon,” Odom said on his plan going forward. “After spring football, I’m hoping to release a top five and then take official visits and then I’ll make a decision before the start of the 2019 high school football season.”