GAINESVILLE, Fla. — As National Signing Day nears, Florida is working to come out on top for a five-star recruit it once led for.
Lyndell “Mack” Wilson, the nation’s No. 2 outside linebacker, is one of three elite prospects visiting the Gators this weekend.
Gators coach Jim McElwain, defensive coordinator Geoff Collins and linebackers coach Randy Shannon conducted an in-home visit with Wilson on Monday night.
“It went great,” Wilson said. “I had a chance to talk with the coaches and they were telling me about the University of Florida and what type of opportunities I have there. They say I can play right away and they were telling me about what kind of coaches I’ll be dealing with. It went great overall.”
Wilson named the Gators his leader during the fall, but admitted to SEC Country late last month that Alabama and Florida were tied and ahead of Georgia in a “40-40-20” ratio.
After visits to UGA and Alabama this month, he now says all three finalists are even.
“I think everybody has the same thing to offer,” Wilson said. “They are all the same type of program. I feel like all three teams are very similar.”
If Wilson ends up at UF, he said it will be because of the chance for early playing time. Shannon drove that message home Monday by letting Wilson know the predicament Florida faced during the Citrus Bowl.
“Coach Shannon was telling me that in their bowl game, they had a walk-on playing linebacker for the whole second half,” Wilson said. “You can look at that and see what kind of opportunity I have to play linebacker right away.
“The depth chart is awful. They don’t have a lot of linebackers, so that is really a key for me in if I go there. Coach Shannon is also a really great coach.”
Wilson hoped to bring several family members with him to UF, but his mother will be the only relative coming. Despite it being almost six months since he visited Florida, Wilson said he doesn’t need to see a lot in Gainesville this weekend.
“I just want to enjoy my time with the coaches,” Wilson said. “I’ve already seen how the campus is. I just want to enjoy myself. I want to learn how the coaches will develop me as a person and a player, too.”
SEC Country’s Chris Kirschner contributed to this report.
All player rankings and ratings are from the 247Sports Composite.