“It’s Florida” and Hand wants to visit

Woodbridge (Va.) Senior defensive end Da’Shawn Hand is considered the top prospect in the country but that doesn’t mean he is shying away from competition at The Opening.

“It’s amazing to be out here with a whole lot of top elite players,” Hand said. “You have to play hard every play like you do in college.”

For the 6-foot-4, 248-pound Hand, he is focusing on three programs, but is still in contact with two other schools as well.

“Alabama, Florida and Michigan are the three stand outs,” Hand said. “LSU and USC have been recruiting me and staying in contact with me but I’ve shut everything down until mid-July.”

Hand broke down what he liked about the three programs standing out for him:

Alabama: “I mean Bama is Bama. When I visited there I got to talk to the engineering dean and he was into football so that was cool.”

Florida: “What I really like about Florida is coach Will Muschamp and coach Brad Lawing, those guys are defensive gurus. I don’t know much about the academics there, so that’s why I’m going to take my official visit down there. I’ve always had interest in them and it’s different down there now with the new coaches and new people, so it’s good there. I have to take a visit down there because I’ve heard its nice.”

Michigan: “I had a great visit there and that’s my favorite coaching staff right now. I met with the sports management people and they blew me, my dad and my coach away.”

Hand says that while he will take an official to Florida, a stop in Gainesville this summer may happen as well. He knows what he is looking forward to seeing on the Florida campus.

“It’s beautiful down there, it’s Florida,” Hand said. “I want to the see people and the professors. I always hear about Florida football and how great of a program they have and how coach Muschamp is building an empire down there so I want to see it.”

All prospects want to play early in college, but Hand says he wants to earn his playing time, not be given it.

“They tell me I have an equal opportunity to play early at Florida,” Hand said. “I don’t like when coaches promise me stuff. If a coach promises me I’m going to start from day one than I shouldn’t be going there and obviously, it’s not a great program.”

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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.