GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Florida won’t sign five wide receivers like it did in the 2016 class, but the Gators are trying to land an elite prospect at the position for 2017.
It doesn’t get better than Donovan Peoples-Jones, the nation’s No. 1 WR and No. 5 player overall. The five-star recruit visited UF on Sunday, his first trip to Gainesville since last summer.
Peoples-Jones spent most of his day with the coaches and toured the facilities, seeing Florida’s indoor practice field for the first time. The 6-foot-2, 192-pounder from Detroit (Mich.) Cass Tech told the staff he plans to return for another trip, possibly an official visit in the fall.
The Gators, currently listed in his top 10, are viewed as one of the teams that could pull Peoples-Jones from up north. He also visited Alabama, Auburn and Florida State this past week.
— Donovan P. Jones (@dpeoplesjones) April 3, 2016
UF makes the cut for three top recruits
Jacoby Stevens has yet to visit the Gators, but they’re one of his favorites.
Stevens, a five-star recruit and the nation’s No. 1 athlete, named a top seven in order Sunday and Florida was No. 4 on the list, ahead of in-state Tennessee, Southern Cal and Oklahoma.
Georgia, LSU and Florida State are the top three schools for the 6-foot-2, 200-pounder from Murfreesboro (Tenn.) Oakland.
K.J. Britt, a three-star linebacker with some big-time offers, also released a list of favorites in order Sunday. UF is No. 3 for Britt behind UGA and Auburn.
The remaining schools in his top 10 are Michigan, Clemson, Ole Miss, South Carolina, Mississippi State, Tennessee and Virginia Tech. Alabama has also offered the 6-foot, 232-pounder from Oxford, Ala.
Britt took a trip to Florida last month and called it “the best visit” he had been on.
Cesar Ruiz, the nation’s No. 1 center from Bradenton (Fla.) IMG Academy, included the Gators in his top 12 on Sunday. Michigan tops his ordered list followed by Alabama, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Ole Miss, LSU, Clemson, Florida, Auburn, Temple, Miami and Rutgers.
Alabama commit attending Florida’s spring game
UF received good news Sunday from another in-state lineman out of Pensacola.
Four-star offensive tackle Alex Leatherwood announced his plans to attend Friday’s spring game.
The 6-foot-5, 297-pounder last visited Florida for the FSU game in November. Leatherwood is Alabama’s second highest-ranked commit in its 2017 class.
The Gators are also recruiting two other Crimson Tide pledges, but their best shot at a flip might be Leatherwood.
— Alex Leatherwood (@Alskee_) April 3, 2016
Graduate transfer makes decision
A fifth-year cornerback who had a Florida visit scheduled is no longer taking the trip.
Miami of Ohio graduate transfer Marshall Taylor committed to Auburn on Sunday following his official visit. He planned to check out UF on April 15, but is now shutting down his recruitment.
Miami-Ohio grad-transfer CB Marshall Taylor will not take visits to UF or Mich St. "I'm done. I'm an Auburn Tiger." pic.twitter.com/x93a7HCk8b
— Jeffrey Lee (@JLeeAU21) April 3, 2016
New offers from the Gators
Several recruits have landed offers from the Gators in recent days.
On Friday, Florida offered four-star defensive tackle Donovan Jeter (Beaver Falls, Pa.), 2018 quarterback Emory Jones (Franklin, Ga.), 2018 defensive tackle Aeneas Hawkins (Cincinnati, Ohio) and 2019 offensive lineman Keiondre Jones (Hogansville, Ga.).
IMG Academy wide receiver Brian Hightower, a 2018 recruit, visited UF on Sunday and received an offer afterward. The Gators are now reportedly his leader.
Florida extended offers Monday to three-star offensive tackle Billy Ross (Huntington, W.V.) and 2018 offensive tackle Richard Gouraige (Tampa, Fla.).
Unless otherwise indicated, rankings and ratings come from the 247Sports Composite.