GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Florida could be close to landing a safety for its 2017 class.
But right now, that recruit is committed to another SEC school for a different position. Tray Bishop, a 4-star athlete from Dawson, Ga., pledged to Auburn as a quarterback in late July.
However, the U.S. Army All-American now sees himself lining up on the opposite side of the ball in college.
“I kind of made up my mind that I want to play defensive back,” Bishop told SEC Country. “At the end of the day, that’s what I want to do. When I made my mind up, the question I asked myself was, ‘Do I want to get hit or do I want to lay the hit?’ ”
Bishop is ranked the nation’s No. 4 athlete and No. 147 overall recruit. He said his top three schools are Auburn, Florida and Georgia, but the Gators could have the inside track because of their ‘DBU’ tradition.
“It’s a big thing,” Bishop said. “Florida is known for producing DBs, so if you want to be great then you should consider Florida. Coach (Torrian) Gray always says get over (to Florida) so he can coach me up. He’s one of the best DB coaches in America.”
UF coach Jim McElwain is also recruiting Bishop, and his pitch to him is simple but effective.
“Coach Mac’s favorite line is I’ll look good in the right orange and blue,” Bishop said with a laugh.
The 6-foot-3, 193-pound prospect attended his first Florida game last Saturday when the Gators defeated South Carolina, 20-7.
“I really liked it,” Bishop said. “For my first game, it was pretty good. I just liked the atmosphere.”
Bishop plans to set up official visits to Auburn, Florida and Georgia in a couple of weeks. He said the Bulldogs and Tigers will give him the option to play safety, and he’ll have to decide which defense is the best fit for him.
“I’m just staying open,” Bishop said. “It’s just those three schools right now.”
Florida visit solidifies DT commit
Florida defensive tackle commit Fred Hansard made a surprise trip to Penn State on Nov. 5 to attend its game against Iowa.
But after visiting UF for the South Carolina game, the 4-star recruit from Princeton, N.J. had good news for the Gators.
“After this visit, I’m in good shape with them,” Hansard said. “This visit blew me away.”
Hansard committed to Florida in late August over Rutgers and Tennesse. Last Saturday was his time first time seeing The Swamp.
“It was crazy,” Hansard said. “I was excited to get down here and finally catch a game. I had fun. It was a great time. The staff showed me a lot of love, players showed me a lot of love.”
And Hansard loved seeing UF defensive line coach Chris Rumph rotate so many young players at the position. Their performances stood out to him.
“They played an incredible game,” Hansard. “I can’t wait to come in and play with those guys. If you’re good enough to play, you’re going to get in. So that’s something that jumps out to me. I want to come in early and make a big impact for the Gators.”
The 6-foot-3, 310-pound prospect plans to return to Florida for an official visit in January. In addition to Penn State, he said Alabama, Louisville, Pitt and Tennessee are still recruiting him.
“I’m 100 percent to Florida,” said Hansard, the nation’s No. 11 defensive tackle and No. 198 overall recruit.
Unless otherwise indicated, ratings and rankings come from the 247Sports Composite.