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Florida Gators 2016 Recruiting Class


Gator Fan
At first glance, the overall haul looks a little disappointing. Too many 3's and not enough 4's. Hopefully, the coaches are better evaluators of talent than Rivals,etc.
This class is actually really good for a couple of reasons:

1. Stars mean nothing look at Jeff Driskel and some of our other 5 stars in the muschamp era.

2. We have filled a lot of holes in positions of need. If you look at film on these guys most of them are solid.

3. We had 13 players from the State of Florida, the Gators are back in the best state for HS Football

4. We flipped the #2 WR in the nation. That was huge. Our WR class is amazing.

5. We flipped Felippe Franks #5 QB in the country for his position, and a great fit for us. Also this kid wanted to play at Florida and Muschump didn't even breate on him. So flipping him from LSU was huge.

6. Coach Mac Developed talent at CSU that was no where near this level, and he also developed Muschamps recruits into something outside of the gifted folks. I feel like, with his own class, we have a lot of future stars in the making.


Aerospace Cubicle Engineer (ACE)
In year 2 of the Coach Mac Era, this is a good class. The only things to be disappointed in are not locking in a replacement for 4* DT Shaver Manuel (flipped to FSU) who can meet UF's academic requirements. 3* CB Antonio Nelson also failed to meet academic requirements, so he decided to do better than Manuel by going to Gulf Coast Community College to get his grades up.

Another thing that bothers me are the reports that former Gator coach Brad Lawing is doing some dirty recruiting at FSU. The report I read stated that he knew that Manuel would not academically qualify for UF, but he ordered Manuel to just tell UF recruiters what they wanted to hear rather than decommit early for academics.

Coach Mac will get a B+ to A- on this class based on the star ratings and the fact that he left 3 slots open, but if he develops his two classes as well as he did at CSU and does not get any mid-year surprises (like the Will Grier fiasco), this class may prove to be a solid A.


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Am still "evaluating" our overall results post-NSD, but obviously "Agree" with the various conments/conclusions of "the regs"--all of which are cogent and basically cover my own first impressions...It all adds up to pretty well the situation E- lays out above, where (bearing in mind the "constrictions" our coach operates under as compared to other SEC programs--their cultures, history and oversight or lack there-of) it probably means we won't likely have all the tools, parts and depth our Coach fully intends to ultimately have in place, until 2017. He has us on track, tho', and even so (along with a certain element of feeling like "the other shoe is still to drop" as far as THIS class is concerned--we may still pick up someone important to this process before the summer) I'm with those who discount these "recruiting-rankings according to so-called experts". Our Coaches, the Head Coach most of all, are the "experts" I (lets face it, ALL of us) rely on in evaluating what's happened and what it likely means down the road. A coupla apparent "misses" there--but overall most of what Mac and his people seemed fixed on coming in, with room for and (as I say, and you all have implied from different perspectives), though the possibilities are still out there for more THIS year, our own longterm "assembly line" for our climb back to the very top, and STAYING there once we make it.
More, LOTS more I could say about all this, but think better to wait'n'see, let it all finish playing out, settle down--and count on some eventual perspective...and who knows? One or two positive surprises
still to come?
Main pount for now though is, I don't think we NEED the ratification of "media-experts-rankings" OR some unforeseen secret last-minute late-commit to make this class ultimately "successful", and/or turn out to be "as good as we could hope for". It could tutn out to be pretty well exactly what was needed. Certainly our COACH seems to feel that way, "all of the above".
Anyway, for him, us and everyone else, "Time will tell". So...Whats our next "meaningful peek at the future"?


Aerospace Cubicle Engineer (ACE)
After NSD the class settled in at about #10 in the nation, #4 in the SEC, with some recruiting services ranking is at #14. Unlike most schools, Florida had 24 of 25 athletes firmly committed before NSD with half of them on campus already. Time will tell if Coach Mac's recruiting style works out.

UF grabbed fewer quality recruits from the state of Florida (12) than Miami (16), but barely more than FSU (11). FSU and Miami have a slight edge in grabbing 5* and 4* athletes. UCF, USF, FIU and FAU are grabbing a dozen 3* athletes each year. Auburn had a spike in Florida athletes with Muschamp, but even with the Flipper going to South Carolina I expect Auburn to grab 4-5 Florida kids each year. Ohio State and Notre Dame each grab 4-5 Florida kids per year, primarily linemen. Coach Mac needs to win back some offensive and defensive linemen from the state. He is already winning in-state quarterbacks, receivers, running backs, and defensive backs with only occasional "losses" to FSU and Auburn. Look for those positional recruiting battles to improve.

What I see in Coach Mac's recruiting style is that he is trying to recruit stable, talented players rather than purely going after often troublesome 4* and 5* athletes. There is some risk there, because 3* and 4* athletes need more consistent coaching from stable recruiting staffs, which UF has not provided since 2008. By comparison, Nick Saban and Jumbo Fisher have consistently recruited top five classes despite coaching turnover by grabbing more 5* athletes and by giving kids freedom to act like prima donnas. In short, I see Jim McElwain merging what he learned from Nick Saban with UF's Billy Donovan in order to separate the University of Florida from its competitors.
Mac had 24 of his 26 verbal commitments (as of January) sign with the Gators, with half of them already on campus before NSD! He only needed to flip one on NSD, and it was a more mature, JUCO player. The two key losses on NSD were a receiver and a defensive tackle, with the DT not able to meet UF academics any way.

On a side note, Muschamp gets some credit for purging some of the bad apples. Mac should have no problem filling in Muschamp's talent voids with better student athletes.
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Aerospace Cubicle Engineer (ACE)
Here are some interesting statistics on the class of 2016:
  • 4 transfers (16%), with one being after a year-long suspension. The other 3 transfers were due to lack of playing time or other personal reasons.
  • 5 players signed through 2019 NFL Draft (20%), 1 unsigned (and later arrested).
  • 36.00 % graduated (3 with BA in Sociology, 2 with BA in Sports Management, 1 with BA in Telecommunications, 1 with BA in African studies, 1 with BA in criminology)
  • Class attrition (relative to 2016):
    • 4.00 % in 2016 (failed to qualify academically)
    • 8.33 % in 2017 (2 suspensions and one transfer from 2016)
    • 16.67 % in 2018 (1 NFL UDFA, 3 transfers, plus the previous)
    • 75.00 % in 2019 (2 NFL draftees, 2 NFL UDFA, 1 unsigned)
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Aerospace Cubicle Engineer (ACE)
  • RB Mark Thompson 4*, EE
  • QB Feleipe Franks 4* (flipped from LSU), EE
  • DT Shavar Manuel 4* (flipped to FSU)
  • CB Chauncey Gardner 4*
  • OLB Lyndell Wilson 5* (Alabama)
  • WR Nate Craig-Myers 4* (Auburn)
  • CB Kristian Fulton 4* (LSU)
  • WR Tyrie Cleveland 4* (flipped from Houston)
  • WR Binjamen Victor 4* (Ohio State)
  • WDE Terrell Hall 4* (Alabama)
  • WDE Brian Burns 4* (FSU)
High Choice
  • K Eddy Pineiro 3*
  • QB Kyle Trask 3*
  • WR Joshua Hammond 4*
  • WR Dre Massey 3*
  • WR Freddie Swain 4*
  • ATH/APB McArthur Burnett 3*
  • OT Stone Forsythe 3*
  • CB Jayvaughn Myers 4* (de-committed, signed with Auburn)
  • RB Lamical Perine 3*
  • OLB Jeremiah Moon 4*
  • WDE Antonneous Clayton 4*
  • OLB Vosean Joseph 3*
  • CB Trayvon Mullen 4* (Clemson)
  • OT Landon Dickerson 4* (FSU)
  • WR Sam Bruce 4* (Miami)
  • QB Dwayne Haskins 4* (Maryland)
  • ATH Marquez Callaway 4*
  • OT Malcolm Pridgeon 4*
  • OT Jauan Williams 4*
  • OT Scott Lashley 4*
  • OG John Simpson 4*
  • WR Tre Nixon 4*
  • TE Jacob Mathis 4*
  • WDE Jordan Smith 4*
  • TE Nick Eubanks 3* (Michigan)
  • S Jeawon Taylor 3*
  • ILB David Reese 3*
  • OT Marcus Tatum 3* (Tennessee)
  • WR Rick Wells 3*
  • S Quincy Lenton 3*
  • OL Brett Heggie 3*
  • CB Devron Davis 3* (Colorado State)
  • SDE Jachai Polite 3*
  • CB Antonio Nelson 3* (signed with Florida, but did not academically qualify)
  • CB Aaron Robinson 3* (Alabama)
  • CB Christopher McWilliams 3*
  • WR Eli Stove 4* (Auburn)
  1. OL Branton Autry 6-4 320 of Coffeyville Junior College, Coffeyville KS. 4*
    5.27.2015 Commitment. 10.22.2015 commitment withdrawn. Baylor.
  2. RB/ATH Tyrek Tisdale 6-0 200 Oak Ridge High School, Orlando FL. 3* 3.27.2015 Commitment. 10.6.2015 commitment withdrawn. Maryland.
  3. ATH/WR Tyler Byrd 5-11 185 of Naples High School, Naples FL. 6.20.2013 Commitment. 2.3.2015 commitment withdrawn. Tennessee.
  4. ATH Tre Jackson 5-10 160 of University Lab, Baton Rouge LA. 7.26.2013 Commitment. 2.2.2015 commitment withdrawn. Tulane.
  5. DB/S Spencer Perry 6-3 202 IMG Academy, Bradenton, FL. 3* 3.20.2015 Commitment. 6.25.2015 commitment withdrawn. Notre Dame.
  6. DE Eric Mitchell 6-3 225 Central High School, Miami FL. 3* 2.18.2015 Commitment. 12.17.2015 commitment withdrawn. UCF.
  7. WR Isaiah Johnson 7-3 204 Dwyer High School, Palm Beach Gardens FL. 3* 3.20.2015 Commitment. 12.13.2015 commitment withdrawn. Washington State.
  8. CB Jayvaughn Myers 6-1 180 of Pasco County High School, Dade City FL. 4*
    8.3.2015 Commitment. 11.30.2015 commitment withdrawn. Auburn.
  9. DE JaQuan Bailey 6-3 235 William M. Raines Hugh School, Jacksonville FL. 3* 3.14.2015 Commitment. 12.15.2015 commitment withdrawn. Iowa State.
  10. DT Shaver Manuel 6-3 300 IMG Academy , Bradenton, FL. 4* 1.5.2016 Commitment (U.S. Army All American Game). Flipped to FSU two weeks before NSD, did not academically qualify for Florida.
  11. WR Aaron Robinson 6-1 185 of Deerfield Beach High School, Deerfield Beach FL. 3*
    6.5.2015 Commitment. Flipped to Auburn on NSD.