What would recruiting be without a healthy, always active rumor mill? To answer my own question, it wouldn’t be much more than fans waiting around quietly for the decisions made by teenagers. Quietly, in that there would be no talk and speculation, there would be no premature excitement or disappointment, and there would be no "inside sources" or "trusted hints." No, recruiting wouldn’t be very much fun at all from a fan perspective. To some, that’s probably a very good thing; to others, it sounds like a boring world they might wish to walk away from. Count me among that second group.
I live approximately six miles from the place the nation’s top tight end does most of his footballing. It’s the closest high school to my home, but that doesn’t give me any added insight into the recruitment of Kent Taylor. The rumors I’ve heard are many of the same you have.
I’ve heard for a while now that the Gators could take three tight ends as part of the 2012 recruiting class. I’ve heard rumors of a true freshman at the position currently on the roster not being as happy with his choice to attend Florida as he once was. I’ve heard of the possibility – and now reality – of a different tight end announcing his intention to transfer. And I’ve heard of the increasing possibility that Taylor will join Colin Thompson and commit to the Gators. Mostly rumors, but some already coming to life.
On Tuesday, news came out that Gerald Christian would indeed leave Florida. Over the past few weeks, Gators’ fans have become increasingly confident of Taylor’s commitment, and with the Christian announcement, many believe it to now be a certainty. As it currently stands, Florida would enter the 2012 season with a redshirt junior (Jordan Reed), a sophomore (A.C. Leonard) and a freshman (Thompson) on the roster. There's plenty of room for Taylor and a great opportunity for Charlie Weis to add another of "his" players into the offense.
Taylor’s favorites include Florida, FSU, Georgia and Penn State, but the Gators have the upper hand. It could just be rumor, but this one seems to be sticking more than others. Whichever school will be lucky enough to land him already knows. Taylor informed the school of his decision weeks ago, but will wait until Thursday, October 27 to make that decision public. That’s when Taylor receives his U.S. Army All-American Game jersey. If that announcement favors the Gators, it would go a long way to lift the spirits of all those associated with a program currently in the middle of what can only be described as a serious funk.
Landing the nation’s top tight end would be positive for the future, but also provide the Gators a boost in the present. Until Thursday, let's hope we hear the words we all long to hear – "I will be attending the University of Florida."