GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Hurricane Matthew could affect more than just Florida football players Saturday.
The weather could put a damper on UF’s biggest recruiting weekend of the season. The Gators are scheduled to host more than two dozen prospects for the LSU game, but the hurricane will prevent some out-of-visitors from making the trip.
UF cornerback commit Elijah Blades and 4-star linebacker Rahyme Johnson, both California recruits, cancelled their visits on Wednesday due to uncertain weather conditions.
Hurricane Matthew could also keep 5-star wide receiver Donovan Peoples-Jones (Detroit) and 4-star linebacker Anthony Hines (Plano, Texas) from flying into Gainesville. Both are scheduled to officially visit the Gators this weekend and would likely reschedule their trips if they can’t make it.
This shouldn’t hurt Florida’s chances with Hines, Johnson or Peoples-Jones, but they’ll miss an opportunity to see a sellout crowd in The Swamp if the game does indeed happen Saturday. The rest of the out-of-state visitors are from Alabama and Georgia and will still be able to drive to UF.
Early signing period proposal
On Wednesday, the NCAA’s Division I Council proposed early signing periods for college football recruiting.
It would consist of two 72-hour windows, one on the last Wednesday in June and another in mid-December. This would take effect for the 2017-18 recruiting year.
The proposals, which also include adding a 10th assistant coach to FBS staffs, will be considered by the Division I Board of Directors in January. If approved, they would take effect Aug. 1, 2017.
Here’s what McElwain told the AJC about early signing periods:
“Well, it’s one of those deals that as long as everybody is working under the same guidelines, (we’ll deal with it). I think there’s a lot of merit to it. At times, the things that happen to you with a lot of kids, they want to go to a place, so let’s get it over with (and sign early). I think it will really help in the long run, yet part of what happens is going to be tough.
“When are you going to be able to get some guys on campus? Obviously, you’re going to have to hustle during the season for your visits. That will be interesting. I’m not sure about the exact best way to do it. I think maybe going into a kid’s senior year (he could sign), if he’s prepared to. … That way you don’t have distractions for the high school coaches during their season.”
Florida WR target honored
James Robinson was named an All-American this week by Under Armour.
The 4-star wide receiver from Lakeland, Fla., was presented with his jersey during the American Family Insurance Selection Tour. The Under Armour All-America Game will be held on Jan. 1, 2017 in Orlando, Fla.
Robinson has previously named the Gators his leader and plans to officially visit UF.