With the dead period now in effect, SEC Country is counting down the top 10 recruiting targets for Florida in the Class of 2017.
No. 8 is Rahyme Johnson, a 4-star linebacker from Los Angeles.
Recruiting importance of Rahyme Johnson
With the loss of senior linebackers Jarrad Davis and Daniel McMillian as well as the expected NFL departure of redshirt junior Alex Anzalone, Florida needs to replace those numbers in recruiting. The Gators already have a pair of 3-star commitments in James Houston (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.) and Ventrell Miller (Lakeland, Fla.), but adding a third prospect at the position would shore up the depth chart. UF linebackers coach Randy Shannon is pursuing 4-star linebacker Levi Jones (Austin, Texas), but his chances are better with Johnson.
Biggest competition for Rahyme Johnson
UCLA makes the most sense. Oregon was once viewed as the favorite for him, but the Ducks don’t appear to be a factor at this time following their coaching change. Johnson also has officially visited Nebraska and Oregon State. He plans to take a trip to Florida next month, and the Gators have been the one constant throughout his recruitment. Johnson expressed interest in UF since he visited last summer and received an offer.
Signing day projection for Rahyme Johnson
If he chooses to leave Los Angeles and not play for the hometown Bruins, the Gators could be the team to beat. Johnson also holds offers from Notre Dame and Texas A&M, but Florida is his best and most appealing offer among the schools he’s considering — aside from UCLA. He has a relationship with UF cornerback commit Elijah Blades from Pasadena, Calif. If their visit together goes well, Johnson likely will join Blades in Gainesville.
Top 10 recruiting targets
No. 3: C.J. Henderson, 4-star cornerback, Miami.
No. 4: Brad Stewart, 4-star defensive back, New Orleans.
No. 5: LaBryan Ray, 4-star defensive end, Madison, Ala.
No. 6: Tray Bishop, 4-star athlete, Dawson, Ga.
No. 7: T.J. Moore, a 4-star offensive tackle, Charlotte, N.C.
No. 8: Rahyme Johnson, 4-star linebacker, Los Angeles
No. 9: Tyrone Truesdell, 3-star defensive tackle, Augusta, Ga.
No. 10: Adarius Lemons, 3-star running back, Clearwater, Fla.