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Florida coach Dan Mullen has a little more than three weeks to wrap up his first recruiting class with the Gators.

Countdown to National Signing Day as Gators remain in play for top targets

Ryan Young

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Checking in on Florida’s top recruiting targets

With a little more than three weeks left before National Signing Day, the race is on for Florida coach Dan Mullen and his staff to complete what is already a promising first recruiting class with the Gators.

Florida hosted no official visitors over the weekend, but the coaches were on the road making visits of their own as the contact period resumed Friday.

Justin Watkins, a 4-star WR from Clermont, Fla., posted a photo Friday of himself with Mullen and assistant coach Ja’Juan Seider. Wide receiver remains a top priority for the Gators in this class, and Watkins is ranked the No. 21 WR nationally by the 247Sports composite. He is expected to make an official visit to Florida this coming weekend.

Meanwhile, defensive coordinator Todd Grantham visited Dorian Gerald, the No. 1 strongside defensive end in the 247Sports composite JUCO rankings.

A former Tennessee commit, Gerald, from College of the Canyons in California, is scheduled to make an official visit to Florida on Feb. 2, less than a week before NSD on Feb. 7.

After their haul during the early signing period, the Gators can sign between 7-9 more players in this class depending on further roster attrition, with the status of six of the nine players suspended last August still unsettled. SEC Country’s Zach Abolverdi provides a closer look at the numbers here.

Meanwhile, here’s an update on what programs some of Florida’s top targets visited over the weekend and what that means for the Gators’ chances.

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In other Florida football news

  • Florida announced a date and time for the annual Orange & Blue spring game as well as a finalized list of its mid-year early enrollees.
  • Steve Spurrier shared his thoughts on the role coaches play in helping players decide to declare for the NFL draft or return to school.

Recruiting roundup

On the hardwood

  • The Florida men’s basketball team took its first SEC loss of the season Saturday, falling at Ole Miss, 78-72, in a game that featured 13 ties and 11 lead changes. Keith Stone scored a career-high 23 points, but preseason All-SEC pick KeVaughn Allen continued to struggle with only 5 points on 2-of-9 shooting. Coach Mike White reiterated his hope that Allen will breakout soon. Florida (12-5, 4-1 SEC) hosts Arkansas on Wednesday night at the O’Connell Center.
  • The Florida women’s basketball team lost 66-59 at home to LSU on Sunday to remain winless in the conference. The Gators are 8-10 overall and 0-5 in the SEC.

Gymnastics plays to a full house

  • The Florida gymnastics team hosted its first sellout in program history Friday night as a reported crowd of 9,661 filled Exactech Arena at the O’Connell Center to watch the No. 7 Gators take on No. 1 LSU. The Tigers earned a narrow victory, 197.250-197.125.

Let’s keep talking

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What they’re saying on Twitter

Florida offensive lineman Tyler Jordan, a Jacksonville native, was one of several Gators tweeting about the Jaguars’ NFL playoff win over the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday:

As was suspended Gators running back Jordan Scarlett:

Top recruiting target and 4-star WR Jacob Copeland responded to a fan that he won’t announce his college choice until National Signing Day:

The Gators equipment staff was busy getting ready for the start of the offseason program this week:

Suspended Florida WR Rick Wells posted about his optimistic outlook for 2018:

Florida athletic director Scott Stricklin had the perfect response when Gators softball coach spotted him jogging:

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