As Jim McElwain tries to rebuild Florida football into a championship program, one of his mottos is “recruit daily or die.” Join us here on SEC Country for a daily recap of the latest Florida recruiting news, tales from the trail and perspective on what it all means for the Gators.
Playmakers are there for Florida
Gator Nation is still steaming from Florida’s 33-17 loss to Michigan last Saturday. Everyone and their mother — no, seriously — has chimed on offensive coordinator Doug Nussmeier, his maligned offensive line and a QB mess that he still hasn’t figured out.
But one complaint has seemingly disappeared from the airwaves and social media stratosphere.
It’s more so been an excuse or explanation from the fan base for Florida’s offensive woes in the past seven years. You could see when the receivers ran their routes and or the backs hit their holes. It was obvious when the quarterbacks — any of them — dropped to pass.
The Gators had bad offensive players.
There was a drop-off in talent. The caliber of athletes we saw at Florida during its championship years were nowhere to be in Gainesville, Fla.
Instead, they’ve been going to Alabama, Clemson and Florida State. The Crimson Tide are still a step ahead of everybody on the recruiting trail, but the Gators are beginning to catch up to Clemson and FSU.
After signing just three top-300 offensive prospects in the Class of 2015, Gators coach Jim McElwain doubled that number each year that followed. He and his staff signed six top-300 overall players on the offensive side of the ball in both the 2016 and 2017 classes, according to the 247Sports Composite rankings.
A dozen in two years. That’s one more than Clemson, the same amount as Auburn and one less than FSU and LSU. So Florida’s offensive recruiting has recently been on the same level as other major programs, according to the rankings, and the Gators already have seven top-300 commits in their 2018 class.
Players should no longer be the problem, and it’s not. The Gators have 10 offensive players on their roster who were ranked in the top 15 nationally at their positions, and that doesn’t include star wide receiver Antonio Callaway and freshman All-American Jawaan Taylor.
Starting quarterback Feleipe Franks, running Jordan Scarlett, wide receivers Tyrie Cleveland, Josh Hammond and James Robinson and offensive linemen Martez Ivey, Tyler Jordan and Brett Heggie were named All-American as high school recruits.
Junior college transfers Mark Thompson and Dre Massey and freshman tight end Kemore Gamble were ranked No. 1, No. 5 and No. 7 at their position, respectively.
Florida the Jimmy’s and Joe’s. This is Nussmeier’s third year at UF and these are his players. There’s no more excuses or explanations.
The Gators have multiple issues on the offensive side of the ball, but lack of talented playmakers isn’t one of one of them.
Miss a previous Gator Chomps notebook? Find every daily recap of Florida Gators recruiting right here.
The post Florida has recruited enough highly-rated players to produce potent offense appeared first on SEC Country.
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