GAINESVILLE, Fla. — The state of Florida is a hotbed for high school recruiting, and the Gators are trying to do their part to keep some of the state’s top prospects from flocking elsewhere.
The Gators currently have six of the top-100 players from the state in the 2018 class either signed or committed to play at UF next season, according to the 247Sports Composite rankings. The only team with more committed or signed prospects from the state is Miami, which has 15 players from the Sunshine State in its class that is ranked No. 5 nationally following a 10-2 regular season that resulted in an Orange Bowl berth. Louisville is third with four Class of 2018 recruits from Florida in its class. No other school has more than three.
Florida’s top committed prospect from the state is 4-star offensive lineman Richard Gouraige, the 19th-ranked player in the state and the 86th overall prospect nationally. The Tampa native and Under Armour All-American committed to Florida on Oct. 20.
The rest of the Gators’ top in-state prospects signed on Wednesday. They are:
- Safety Amari Burney (No. 30 in the state)
- Linebacker David Reese (No. 53)
- Safety Randy Russell (No. 71)
- Safety John Huggins (No. 77)
- Tight end Dante Lang (No. 100)
Florida isn’t done attempting to recruit inside the state. With six weeks until National Signing Day on Feb. 7, the Gators are hoping to reel in players such as 5-star offensive lineman Nicholas Petit-Frere (No. 3 in the state, No. 17 nationally), 4-star offensive lineman William Barnes (No. 8 in the state, No. 45 nationally) and 4-star wide receiver Jacob Copeland (No. 10 in the state, No. 53 nationally).