GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Florida will once again host eight prospects on campus this weekend, but two of them will be unofficial visitors.
Three targets will be on hand for the Gators, including a pair of coveted teammates from South Florida.
Here are the three best things that could happen for UF recruiting this weekend:
1) Win over teammates Burns, Eubanks
The Florida coaches are counting on eventual commitments from defensive end Brian Burns and tight end Nick Eubanks.
The four-star teammates attended the UF-FSU game together, and they named the Gators their leaders coming out of that visit.
Since then, however, Florida State has gained a slight edge with Burns, while Alabama has closed the gap on UF for Eubanks following his trip to Tuscaloosa last weekend and in-home visit with Nick Saban on Thursday.
Burns will officially visit Alabama and FSU next week, and Eubanks is heading to California for a trip to Southern Cal. With that in mind, the Gators need to regain the position they held for Burns and Eubanks in November as signing day approaches.
2) Fend off Alabama from Joseph, Robinson
Alabama sent out recent offers to Florida commits Vosean Joseph and Aaron Robinson, who earned first team all-state selections after stellar senior seasons against some of the best South Florida competition.
Joseph visited Tuscaloosa last weekend, and the Crimson Tide are trying to get Robinson on campus the final weekend before signing day. They each hold offers from other major programs, but Alabama is the biggest threat to UF for both recruits.
This weekend will be key in keeping Joseph and Robinson solid to Florida and preventing a late flip by the national champs.
3) Shore up Shavar
Under Armour All-American defensive tackle Shavar Manuel committed to the Gators earlier this month over FSU and LSU, but the Seminoles haven’t stopped pursuing him.
Jimbo Fisher and assistant coaches Lawrence Dawsey and Brad Lawing met with Manuel at his school Thursday, and the four-star recruit is scheduled to officially visit Florida State on Jan. 29.
UF isn’t worried about potentially losing Manuel, and a good trip to Gainesville will only bolster that confidence.
*RB Lamical Perine, 5-11, 211, Theodore, Ala. (Florida commit)
TE Nick Eubanks, 6-6, 230, Plantation, Fla./American Heritage
DE Brian Burns, 6-5, 209, Plantation, Fla./American Heritage
DE Antonneous Clayton, 6-4, 218, Vienna, Ga./Dooly County (Florida commit)
DT Shavar Manuel, 6-4, 287, Bradenton, Fla./IMG Academy (Florida commit)
LB Vosean Joseph, 6-2, 210, Miami, Fla./Norland (Florida commit)
LB Dee Walker, 6-3, 210, Moultrie, Ga./Colquitt County
*CB Aaron Robinson, 6-1, 178, Deerfield Beach, Fla. (Florida commit)
* — unofficial visitors
All player rankings and ratings are from the 247Sports Composite.